Regional News

There are free alternatives to the Airbnb model in the house sharing realm

By Silvia Castro Betancourt 0 Comments NEWS, Regional News
This article was written and published in Spanish and has been translated into English via Google Translate. Click here to read the original article.
The international explosion of tourist accommodation by Airbnb has provoked an angry reaction from the neighbors affected by their side effects and by local authorities. City councils like those of Barcelona and Madrid in Spain, and of other cities with tourist saturation in other countries, are approving legal measures that are putting on the brakes on the phenomenon. According to its detractors, Airbnb has provoked the increase of the rents, gentrification, especially from the tourist centers, and the expulsion of many inhabitants from their own neighborhoods.
Faced with this issue, there are various vacation accommodation exchange platforms that maintain a collaborative and disinterested spirit in the face of the growing exclusively economic interest of the Airbnb paradigm. These are some of the most popular ones:
Couchsurfing: Created in 2004, the platform currently has more than 400,000 registered hosts and is used by some four million travelers. To offer accommodation it is enough to have a sofa (couch in English), or an additional mattress. The stay is completely free and you can check references on hosts and guests in the user community.
Bewelcome: Founded in 2007 by the non-profit association BeVolunteer, works in a similar way to the previous one, users can stay in other people's houses free. In return, there is a commitment to open your own home to other interested travelers. Registration is also gratis, although the parent organization accepts voluntary donations.
Interchangecasas: Unlike the previous ones, in this case, you do not live with the owners, but you try to match the dates of the accommodation when they are also outside or travel to the house of the applicant. There is also no economic transaction between guest and host, but registration on the platform costs 130 euros for management expenses and entitles a full year of access.
In addition to these platforms for collaborative exchange of housing, there are other more unique that also allow us to stay in other cities without spending a euro but in exchange for taking care of pets or the house itself while their owners are away. With different variants, caregivers receive a small allowance for travel and living expenses. HomeSitters or HouseCarers represent this peculiar model.
This article was written and published in Spanish and has been translated into English via Google Translate. Click here to read the original article.

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