“How do you find those awesome people to stay over?”

Lately, people almost ask me this question on a daily base. So, to give you an idea I will give you some examples: most of the times I find locals out of my own network, asking friends of friends. And other days I meet some interesting locals during my trip, like Ben, who gave me a ride. During his lift offer, I decided to follow him for a couple of days.

My host gave me the keys to his apartment

When I can’t find a host, I post a public trip on Couchsurfing. A platform where travelers and hosts can find each other. I needed a place in Perth when I left Cairns last week, so I posted my trip on Couchsurfing. When you post a public trip, hosts can offer you a spot if they like your profile. Sam invited me over at his place in the center of Perth, but a couple a days before take off, he called me: “Hi Marleen, I’m sorry but I’m leaving too Melbourne to visit my family. It was a last minute decision.”

I was already panicking. How on earth can I find a new host so fast? But Sam told me right away it wouldn’t be a problem if I used the apartment. I didn’t expect that answer at all. You really have to trust people to just take a foreigner in your house.

He hide the key when I arrived and I entered the apartment. After a while, his roommate also got home. After just ten minutes of talking and getting to know each other, we decided to hang out and explore the area. I felt so lucky meeting this awesome girl. What would have happened if I was totally alone in that house?  I would be feeling lonely right away I guess, even when my visit to Perth was short.

The next morning we went out for breakfast with her brother at a cute little food cafe called Raw & More. As a tourist, you would not find this cafe easily, but the food was so amazing. Her brother took me on a bike ride and in just two hours, I saw the best spots in the city. That’s why I just love hanging out with locals.