There is an old saying: “You open your home and you open your heart.” Hosting weary travelers is an excellent way to expand your horizons, meet new people, and pay it forward. Some people are naturally inclined to this sort of thing. They’ll invite just about anyone into their home and break bread.
Most of us are a bit more reserved. It is your house, your safe and sacred space, and we get that. So, here are some thing consider before you jump in:
IS IT FOR YOU?
Of course, there are some things to take into account, like how comfortable do you feel. You don’t want to invite someone to stay, only to vibe them out the whole time. Do you have room? Some of us are already living in closet-sized apartments. Can you trust them? You don’t want to have to be looking over your shoulder or feel like you can’t leave your house.
HOW TO LAY OUT THE WELCOME MAT
Permitting all things above are a “go”, open your doors. You can make yourself available to those friends that are living that #vanlife or friends of friends who roll through town. Send an Instagram message to people passing through or just spread the word. If you’re feeling really adventurous, you can sign up for couch surfing or Airbnb if you have some extra space. The best way is to just keep an eye out on social media and through word of mouth.
WHAT TO DO WHEN THEY ARE AROUND
Just because you open your home doesn’t mean you have to put your life on hold. Your level of activity or interaction with your travelers will vary. Of course, making some time to grab a bite or coffee while they’re in town will help you move beyond a place of shelter and into friendship territory. If you don’t have any free time, make a list of your favorite places around town for them to hit up for the best impression of your city.
You never know when a lifelong connection is just around the corner. Opening your home to travelers is opening yourself to the world. There is something so special about dinner with strangers, an open bottle of wine, and stories about the places we’ve never seen. And there will come a time when you are the traveler, when your road weary and in the unknown. When that time comes, the more friends you’ve made the better.
(Featured Image via @dyslecix)