At the beginning of our travel we had to look for alternative way of sleeping like in the house of locals, camping or in religious temples because of our economical situation. Big dreams but small budget so we couldn´t afford hotels. Later on we discovered sleeping in this way doesn’t means only saving a lot of money, it´s also getting rich in experiences and friends.
Another reason for us to choose a different kind of place to pass the night everyday was to don´t get crazy, if you are a couple who is traveling on a single motorbike for more than 4 years at the end of the day the last thing you need is to spend the night alone in a room.
In this article we are sharing 8 different different kind of accommodation while you are traveling:
- Outdoor free camping. we could open our small tent enough just for two of us in some of the most special sceneries of the world. We did free camping mostly in North America and in deserts like the ones we found in Namibia, Baja California or Australia.
- Religious temples. The buddhist temples In South East Asia become our home and spiritual retreat during the travel. We found easy to be accepted for the monks and very comfortable place to rest after the long day travel by the dusty and hot roads. We could learn about their way of practicing this philosophy of life, about meditation and finding balance between our body and mind in a momento when we were really tired, and also the monks always invited us for very delicious food. In India was slept in the Hindhu temples and in Africa we use to be with the old missioners of the Christian churches. We are not much into religión but in some countries priest use to be the most educated people where they are and from them we could listen also many interesting stories from the área we were visiting.
- Police Station. It may sounds strange, but in some countries the police station is not like you imagine. Mostly it was in Indonesia and India we was welcomed to pass the night in the police station. Somethimes they had to offer us just the floor where to lay down, sometimes an old mat and even some times we slept in empty prison cells. Always they invite us for dinner and funny conversations. Talking with others prisoners behind the cells was really interesting.
- Fire Station. In South America we found like the most available and easy way for sleeping the fire stations (bomberos). In every small village there was volunteer fire stations, which at the end of the day is more like a social clubs for the men of the village where to meet after job. They have service and team working for 24 hours, what means there your will find bed, shower and kitchen. We were always welcomed to share lunch, dinner or some activities with them.
- The houses of local people. Knock, knock!!! We were calling at the door of local people in every single country we visitred to ask for a place to sleep. The people open the door and there we are, dirty, tired, and hungry. Strangers? And then I ask in a completely natural way if we could sleep with them in their houses? Maybe not a question we expect to receive forma n stranger when we open the door of ur house but most of the time we been accepted. We remember specialy the hospitality in Central Asia, and it was very interesting when our hosts were the tribes of different places of the world like the himba in Namibia, massai in Tanzania or long neck tribe in Thailand.
- Couchsurfing. In the smaller cities and villages it can be easy to knock in the door and ask for place to sleep but in the big cities, it doesnt matter if is in Africa, USA, Europe or Asia, the style of life of the people is different. Less trust, more busy and more properties for what to worry about. Social life is working mostly in internet so over there you can find some platforms that makes easier to travel. Opened a profile in couchsurfing which allow us to send request to people to ask for a place to sleep for free in their houses, the differEnt is that here they have time to search in our profile and the references from previous hosts. For us it was working very good specially in Australia, USA and Europe.
- Hotels collaborations. From the 1475 days we been traveling on our motorcycle just some of them we slept in hotels. Was the days when we were needing time and space for us, to work in the computer and to rest after a long period of intense travel. But we never pay for this hotels with money. We were arriving to the reception of nice hotels and we offer them in exchange of our accommodation and food a photo session of the hotel so we provide them with few good pictures they can use for them promotions, sometimes some recomendations of the place in our blog it will work as well.
If you want to know more about this topic, you may be interested in the following posts:
- The art of knowing how to ask, your best tool for traveling
- How to become a professional guest
- Go around the world without paying for a single night in a hotel
This kind of accommodation we received for free but we want to believe that we always give back something to those people who host us. Some positive energy, inspiration, and stories from our travel that we are sure motivated them many times after we left to see life in a different way.