Traveling in a shared economy has changed significantly since the advent of the internet. Almost all businesses and practices that have been influenced by the internet get better. Processes are improved and services conducted efficiently. Although the internet has not changed everything for the better, it has definitely transformed how people travel and book for accommodation around the world. Today more than ever, people can share, connect and collaborate in amazing ways that allow them to travel in a shared economy.
For budget travelers, among other culture enthusiasts, traveling in a shared economy has been a boon and a run to for many who wish to travel the world and save the world. Through a shared economy today, it is possible for people to connect with local and international travelers with a promise of a cheaper and fun travel experience.
Using a shared economy to travel sets you aside from the touristic travel. It allows you to meet locals and have intimate connections with the local environment. Ideally, a shared economy makes your traveling ideal since you end up saving on money and having a better experience all the same.
Since the demand for a shared economy traveling experience is on the rise, many startups have been investing in that sector. We are going to review some of the most popular and reliable sites that allow you to connect with people and travel on a shared economy.
Sites that allow you to connect on a shared economy with others
These sites use the same concept of allowing people to connect and travel cheaply by sharing the costs. Some allow you to share accommodation costs, traveling cost and so much more. Ideally, any budget that can be split by among people is shared among the travelers. Here are some of the popular shared economy websites on the internet.
These networks have been around for quite some time but since Couchsurfing was founded in 2004, it became a game changer for the other hospitality networks. As the name suggests the site allows travelers to connect with local people who will be willing to accommodate them for a fraction of a price. to put it into perspective, you get people willing to allow you to spend a night on their couch, their floor or their rooms at a very affordable price.
This allows you to get a local perspective of the destination you are visiting. Couchsurfing can be used by people of all ages. Its creators like to see it as a platform that allows for cultural exchange. Just when you thought that this is not popular, Couchsurfing alone has a membership of over 7million members. Ideally, these are people who appreciate the virtue of a shared economy. With that many members, Couchsurfing is easily the biggest shared economy site.
Other sites that offer similar services as Couchsurfing include; Hospitality club, be welcome, Global Freeloaders
Shared economy By renting shared apartments
Hotels and lounges are unarguably expensive places to spend your time in while traveling. As a matter of fact, the most significant budget of a traveler is dedicated to accommodation. Any traveler will tell you that Hotels consume a generous budget. While traveling on a budget, one of the best alternatives is an apartment.
However, in an apartment, you will take care of all your needs but the experience is worthwhile trust me. Websites like airbnb allow travelers to book shared apartments and share the cost of the apartment. Ideally, you can book a whole room, a couch or a specific place of the apartment at a much cheaper rate compared to what you would pay for a hotel room.
The beauty of sharing an apartment I believe is being able to share duties around the apartment. You can take turns to prepare meals, do dishes and go grocery shopping. This offers you a chance to explore local markets and the local cuisine as well. Airbnb is probably one of the biggest if not the biggest since it offers a huge inventory of finding spots around the world.
Camping in someone’s Garden
What gets better than camping in a foreign land and enjoying the company of other pals who share the same interests as you? Shared economy allows you to even rent someone’s backyard to camp in during your vacation. One of the popular websites that allows you to do the same is camp in my garden. This is a UK based website that allows people to rent other people’s premises.
However, with this type of shared economy, you often have to carry your own camping gear and mobile tents. You could still find families that offer camping gear. I would recommend personal gear for the purposes of hygiene and avoiding expensive fines in case the gear got damaged under you. This form of shared economy in traveling is common in Europe and is quickly becoming famous in other parts of the world.
Save on cost by eating with Locals
One of the newest ways you could save on costs during your travel is by eating with locals. Ideally, these websites allow locals to post their dinner meals and other meals. Travelers on the other hand link with them and enjoy a meal together.
This has become common especially when locals have dinner parties and want to invite visitors to the table. As a traveler, this allows you to explore the local cuisine well by consuming home cooked food of the locals. Some websites do charge a small fee for this service while some are free.
Sites that allow you to share a meal with the locals include; colunching, Mealsharing and eat with locals.
Share on cost by getting cheap taxis
This is somewhat similar to car booming in someone’s car or getting a lift. The difference with this one is that you pay a small price for the taxi. While traveling away from home you are likely to be overcharged by taxi drivers who realize you are new to the area. One of the most popular cheap taxis is Lyft. This service allows locals to pick you up and drop you off whenever you need to go.
Compared to other taxi services, Lyft is 30% cheaper which allows you to commute at a cheaper price. If lyft is not your thing, you can also rent someone’s car and pay less than renting a car from a company. The biggest limitation of saving through this method is that sites that offer the services are limited to certain cities around developed countries. Other sites that offer similar services include Drivy, CarHopper, Trailer Made, share a ride and RV share