Great Tips On How and Where to Sleep for Free!!
Warmshowers.org is a network of cyclists around the world who host other cyclists in their home without money ever exchanging hands. I’ve used it a few dozen times on both of my cross-country cycling trips and it’s been an absolutely wonderful experience. This is my first ever host, Patrick, who I stayed with in Vernal, Utah.
Long distance cycling is one of the best ways to experience the world, in my opinion. Spending time with Juanita and her husband Chris in rural Louisiana was a time I’ll never forget.
Another option is to stay with friends and family. Here’s my mom and I in Ashland, Wisconsin.
Just visit the places that you have friends or family and stay with them. Crash on the couch or in the guest bedroom or wherever they have space for you. Just make sure you contribute to the house, respect their place and communicate clearly about your plans. It’s not always easy to remember where all you’re friends have moved to so a social media shout out may be in store to find out who lives in the places you’d like to visit!o WWOOFing!
WWOOF stands for “world wide opportunities on organic farms” and for anyone that is interesting in growing food this is a truly incredible way to travel nearly for free. There are thousands of organic farmers around the world that are looking for volunteers to work on their farm.
Typically five hours of work per day is expected in exchange for lodging and healthy home grown meals. Wwoofing is a great way to learn organic farming, help the healthy food movement grow, and travel in a very low impact manner. Hitching between farms is a very simple way to travel with next to no money.
Work at a hostel. There are a lot of hostels listed on work exchange websites but you can always just walk up to one and ask them if they are in need of help in exchange for a bed in one of the bunks. You could travel from hostel to hostel working for your stay.
House-sit. Their are people all over the world who are looking for someone to watch their house while they travel. You’d be amazed at the cool places you can stay for free by house-sitting. Here’s ahouse-sitting guide from The Guardian
Volunteer. There are a lot of volunteer programs out there that cost money but there are a fair few that are completely free as well. I personally have little desire to pay to volunteer and which much prefer an exchange with no money. VolunteerSouthAmerica.net has a really great list of free volunteer programs that I would recommend checking out
Offer a service of your own. You could cook, do massage, clean, garden, or landscape in exchange for a place to sleep. Use whatever your skill is or learn a new skill;
Stay at a fire station. I’ve found that all over the world firefighters are about as kind as people come. If you are traveling through a town and are in need of a roof over your head their is a good chance that the local friendly firefighters will take you in. They may let you stay in the bunk and use the kitchen but they might just offer you a place to put your tent. Which brings me…
Back to the tent! When you have a tent with you you’ll always be able to find a place to sleep. On my cross country cycling tours and international hitch hiking tours I’ve slept at gas stations, in city parks