couch surfing http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/10417/all en-US How to Get Free Accommodations (and Paid Jobs) on Boats http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-free-accommodations-and-paid-jobs-on-boats <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-get-free-accommodations-and-paid-jobs-on-boats" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/IMG_2324_0.jpg" alt="On a boat" title="On a boat" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="188" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>For two months, I <a href="http://www.theprofessionalhobo.com/2012/02/sailing-the-caribbean-video/">lived and/or sailed on five boats</a> spanning three countries. In so doing, I stumbled upon an entire culture, community, and way of life that is sustainable, adventurous, and full of variety.</p> <p>In those two months, I didn't pay for one night of accommodations, nor did I sleep on land once. Instead, I helped out with business ventures, cooked meals for charter guests, or just provided an extra set of helping hands wherever needed. Each scenario was very different &mdash; from the captain to the boat to the location. For me, that was half the appeal &mdash; incredible variety with a common theme of enjoying life on the water.</p> <p>Here are a few things to know about getting free accommodations &mdash; or even paid jobs &mdash; on boats. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-travel-full-time-for-17000-a-year-or-less">How to Travel Full-Time for $17,000 a Year (or Less!)</a>)</p> <h2>Free Accommodations on Boats</h2> <p>Similar to couch-surfing or hospitality exchanges, nomadic travelers (especially those with nautical skills) can find free passage on sailboats around the world by connecting with captains who need some extra help. (The company doesn't hurt either; it can be a lonely life on the water for a solo captain.)</p> <p>The responsibilities vary as widely as the boats do, but depending on your skills, you could be valuable for your technical expertise, sailing experience, or even your cooking talents. One of the boats I lived on operates some mobile video businesses, and aside from my own share of cooking and cleaning, my video production talents were put to use.</p> <p><strong>Things to Consider</strong></p> <p>Regardless of the agreed-upon tasks and chores, it's important to understand that you're staying in somebody's home &mdash; and a very small home at that. It's important to be adaptable, flexible, and to pitch in wherever you can with communal chores.</p> <p>Depending on the arrangement you make with the captain, you might be charged for your share of the provisions &mdash; mainly being food, water, and fuel. This is normal, and $10-25 U.S./day is a reasonable fee.</p> <p style="margin-bottom: 0cm">Here is an article written by a boat owner about <a href="http://www.yachtmollymawk.com/2011/03/hich-hiking-across-the-atlantic/">what <em>not </em>to do when looking for free passage on a boat</a>.&nbsp;Seeing things from the captain's perspective through this article might help you better position your own skills and set the right expectations.</p> <p><strong>Where to Find Accommodations on Boats</strong></p> <p style="margin-bottom: 0cm">Here are a number of (mostly free) websites where captains and passengers alike can connect and determine if there's a fit for sailing together:</p> <ul> <li><a href="http://www.findacrew.net">Find a Crew</a>&nbsp;(one of the largest resources)</li> <li><a href="http://www.desperatesailors.com">Desperate Sailors</a> (includes a section for skilled freelancers/tradesmen to advertise their skills for paid work)</li> <li><a href="http://www.7knots.com">7Knots</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.floatplan.com/">The Float Plan</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.latitude38.com/crewlist/cruising/skipper_results.lasso">Latitude 38</a>&nbsp;</li> <li><a href="http://www.crewseekers.co.uk/">Crew Seekers</a>&nbsp;</li> </ul> <h2>Paid Jobs on Boats</h2> <p>Some of the sites above also cater to people who are looking for paid jobs on boats. These jobs &mdash; and boats &mdash; also vary dramatically.</p> <p><strong>Charter Boats</strong></p> <p>Some sailboat owners make ends meet by opening up their floating home to charter guests. Depending on the arrangement, the guests might be paying for an all-inclusive fully-catered sailing holiday where they have nothing to do but enjoy the view.&nbsp;In this case, the captain might be in need of a host/hostess/cook. This person would be responsible for taking care of guest needs including meal planning and shopping, cooking, and cleaning throughout the week. Depending on the charter, meals can be multi-course affairs with <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/quick-easy-and-festive-cream-cheese-appetizers">appetizer platters</a> and drinks served through the afternoon. It's always good to clarify the charter's exact needs to ensure you can fill them before you're all stuck on a boat together and realize you're in over your head (so to speak).</p> <p>I had a chance to hostess a very small informal charter through the British Virgin Islands. I enjoyed this experience, which I found through word of mouth (the sailing community is very small, and once you're on one boat, it's easy to meet other captains). When I wasn't cooking or keeping the place tidy, I was swimming and snorkeling with the guests on a different island each day!</p> <p><strong>Mega-Yachts</strong></p> <p>When <a href="http://www.theprofessionalhobo.com/2012/02/getting-my-feet-wet-on-a-sailboat-in-st-martin/">I was in St. Martin</a>, the sheer prevalence of mega-yachts in the lagoon was overwhelming. And each yacht needs a crew to keep the boat &mdash; and the guests &mdash; in top shape.</p> <p><img width="605" height="454" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u290/IMG_2086.jpg" /></p> <p>Unless you're being hired for a boat-specific skill (like captain or engineer), work on mega-yachts is generally easy but onerous. It's comparable to working for a hotel, with a lot of cleaning, polishing, and pandering to guests' needs. The hours are often long, and from what I've heard, it can be a tough slog if you find yourself on the wrong boat. But if you're passionate about the nautical life, it might still be worthwhile. I've met people who love working on yachts, although they'll admit sometimes it takes a few boats to find the right fit.</p> <p><strong>Where to Find Paid Jobs on Boats</strong></p> <p>Many of the sites listed above have resources and sections for paid jobs on boats. But do a simple search for &ldquo;how to get a job on a mega-yacht,&rdquo; and you'll get pages of answers, including sites like these:</p> <ul> <li><a href="http://www.yachtloop.com/">Yacht Loop</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.superyachtjobs.com/jobsearch.asp?hp=Y&amp;submitted=Y&amp;latest=Y&amp;TableOrder=Jobs.DateAdded&amp;Order=DESC">Super Yacht Jobs</a>&nbsp;</li> </ul> <h2>Warning to Novice Seafarers</h2> <p>Whether you're hitching a ride on a sailboat, working on a mega-yacht, or taking up a position on a smaller boat, a few words of caution are necessary, and although this is directed largely at women, it's good for everybody to consider.</p> <p style="margin-bottom: 0cm">When you are on a boat, you are living in a very small space, largely at the mercy of the captain. There is no escape if there's tension, whether you find yourself caught in the middle of a family fight or &mdash; worse yet &mdash; if a drunk captain feels like getting frisky or violent.</p> <p style="margin-bottom: 0cm">There are a lot of dudes who have packed up to live on their boats full-time, and they'd like nothing better than to have a partner to do it with. So be aware of captains who are also looking for love when they're looking for crew; miscommunications can happen.</p> <p>Thus, it's important for <em>both </em>the captain and prospective passenger/crew to get to know one another beforehand (at least through Skype and email) and to be very forthright about expectations.</p> <p>By no means are all boat owners like this; I met so many amazing people in the cruising world &mdash; people who I continue to stay in touch with and who have offered up a cabin on their boat any time. The boating community is a very small one, so the bad seeds tend to get bad reputations before long.</p> <h2>The Cruising Life</h2> <p>Some of the things I loved about the cruising life are how sociable it is, how easy it is to meet people, how mobile it is (duh!), and how lovely it is to hop on a dingy and enjoy &ldquo;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-to-save-money-at-the-bars">happy hour</a>&rdquo; on shore, meeting other like-minded people from all over the world.</p> <p>I feel like I've somehow pulled off a coup by having found free accommodations (and even a paid gig) to live on sailboats throughout the Caribbean for two months. Pinch me!</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-to-get-free-accommodations-and-paid-jobs-on-boats&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%20to%20Get%20Free%20Accommodations%20(and%20Paid%20Jobs)%20on%20Boats.jpg&amp;description=How%20to%20Get%20Free%20Accommodations%20(and%20Paid%20Jobs)%20on%20Boats" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20to%20Get%20Free%20Accommodations%20%28and%20Paid%20Jobs%29%20on%20Boats.jpg" alt="How to Get Free Accommodations (and Paid Jobs) on Boats" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/nora-dunn">Nora Dunn</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-free-accommodations-and-paid-jobs-on-boats">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-great-jobs-for-snowbirds">9 Great Jobs for Snowbirds</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-host-a-traveler-13-tips-to-keep-it-safe-easy-and-cheap">How to Host a Traveler: 13 Tips to Keep it Safe, Easy, and Cheap</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-simple-rules-of-excellent-houseguest-etiquette">11 Simple Rules of Excellent Houseguest Etiquette</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-you-can-do-in-denver-that-you-cant-do-anywhere-else">8 Things You Can Do in Denver That You Can&#039;t Do Anywhere Else</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-travel-full-time-for-17000-a-year-or-less">How to Travel Full-Time for $17,000 a Year (or Less!)</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Job Hunting Lifestyle Travel adventure travel couch surfing housing sailing temporary work Thu, 10 May 2012 09:48:20 +0000 Nora Dunn 927930 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Host a Traveler: 13 Tips to Keep it Safe, Easy, and Cheap http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-host-a-traveler-13-tips-to-keep-it-safe-easy-and-cheap <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-host-a-traveler-13-tips-to-keep-it-safe-easy-and-cheap" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/couch-surfer-photo.jpg" alt="couch surfer sleeping in photo" title="couch surfer sleeping in" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="168" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Here at Wise Bread, we know that couch-sharing services, such as <a href="http://www.couchsurfing.com/">Couch Surfing</a>, can save you money when traveling. We have also heard that hosting travelers through these services is a great way to meet new people, get in the spirit of travel, and even <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/your-couch-can-earn-cash-and-support-a-band">make some money</a>. As good as this sounds, many have reservations about hosting strangers in their home. After all, house guests can be frustrating, expensive, and even dangerous.</p> <p>But it doesn't have to be this way. Here are some tips to help make hosting travelers safer, easier, and even cheaper.</p> <h2>Keep it Safe</h2> <p>Letting strangers into your home is a frightening thing for many people. Here are six tips for <a href="http://www.couchsurfing.com/tips_for_hosts.html">making it safer</a>:</p> <p><strong>Start slow:</strong> You are not required to hand over the key to your home and welcome a wandering stranger with open arms. If the idea makes you uneasy, start slow and only accept invitations for coffee, dinner, or a short tour of your town. Once you have met several friendly people, you may decide that having them spend a night at your place is not such a big deal. If so, arrange to meet at a neutral location, like a cafe or the library, first. If you don't like the looks of things, politely decline your invitation.</p> <p><strong>Don't be a stranger:</strong> If socializing with a stranger makes you cringe, then do everything you can to make sure the person is not a complete stranger when you meet in person. Begin by creating a complete and detailed profile on the couch-sharing network of your choice. List your interests and favorite activities, and include something about your habits. If you get up early for work and like to turn-in with the sun, state this explicitly in your profile. If you don't like guests using your computer, say so up front.</p> <p><strong>Get more information:</strong> When requests come in, check the traveler's profile. If it raises questions, don't be afraid to ask for clarification. Ask questions and get to know the person electronically before you meet in person. Most sites also offer the ability to gather information from references and the traveler's previous hosts.</p> <p><strong>Set boundaries:</strong> Again, you are not required to hand over the keys to your home. If you don't want to leave a stranger there alone, explain that the house will only be open when you are there, and that your guest must find a way to occupy his or herself while you are out during the day. Be clear about times you will and will not be there and offer your cellphone number for emergencies.</p> <p><strong>Don't do it alone:</strong> Involving a friend can make you feel a lot more comfortable. When you go to meet your guest at a neutral location, bring a friend along for support. At the very least, let someone nearby know that you will be hosting a guest and that you may contact them in the event you begin to feel uncomfortable.</p> <p><strong>Don't be afraid to say no:</strong> If you do not feel right about the person or the process at any point, from the initial request to the second day of the visit, do not be afraid to say no.</p> <h2>Make it Easy</h2> <p>If you decide to host a traveler, everything, hopefully, will go smoothly. Unfortunately, having house guest can sometimes be a hassle. Try these five tips for making it as easy as possible:</p> <p><strong>Orient your guest:</strong> When your guest first arrives, take the time to give a tour of your home. This is a good way to show the person where everything is, but it is also a subtle way of explaining anything that might be off limits. Rather than handing your guest a list of rules, mention your restrictions as you pass by. &quot;This is my bedroom, you won't need to go in there...&quot;</p> <p><strong>Provide some basic supplies:</strong> Some people leave things like guest-sized shampoo, toothpaste, and other basic necessities in plain view, keeping their personal items stowed away, while sharing their bathroom with a guest. More important, is showing your guest where to find some basic cleaning supplies, like a broom, mop, sponge, and so on, in case they accidentally make a mess.</p> <p><strong>Give them space:</strong> Most travelers participating in home-sharing programs look forward to getting to know their hosts, so expressing in interest in spending time with your guest shouldn't be a problem. Giving them space for their things, especially if you live in an apartment, might be. Still, it is important to clear a space for their luggage and even offer a basket or some shelf space to use. This helps prevent a backpack full of dirty clothes from being emptied across your living room floor.</p> <p><strong>Encourage activity outside the house:</strong> Be ready to suggest things to do in your town. Having a map ready and a list of your favorite places to eat and hangout shows your guest that they should be out exploring, not in your house, sitting around.</p> <p><strong>Ask for a hand:</strong> Finally, don't be afraid to ask for some help around the house. Most guests are very appreciative of the effort hosts go to house them and will be happy to lend a hand.</p> <h2>Save Some Money</h2> <p>Both <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/saving-money-while-hosting-guests">Wise Bread</a> and <a href="http://www.thesimpledollar.com/2007/08/09/seven-ways-to-save-money-preparing-for-houseguests/">The Simple Dollar</a> have great tips for saving money when guests are visiting. Still, hosting travelers is unique and there some special tips that can help save you money.</p> <p><strong>Buy toiletries in bulk:</strong> Specifically, toilet paper. It's the one item you can count on guests using. If you like to offer smaller items like shampoo, consider buying a large bottle at the bulk store and filling a smaller bottle before guests arrive.</p> <p><strong>Ask your guest to cook dinner:</strong> Most guests will be happy to make something from their home country. Offer your services as a &quot;prep chef&quot; to ensure they can find the things they need in your kitchen.</p> <p>Hosting a traveler is often a wonderful and enlightening experience. It allows you to learn about a new part of your country or the world and even make a new friend. Let us know how it works out in the comments.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-to-host-a-traveler-13-tips-to-keep-it-safe-easy-and-cheap&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%20to%20Host%20a%20Traveler-%2013%20Tips%20to%20Keep%20it%20Safe%2C%20Easy%2C%20and%20Cheap.jpg&amp;description=How%20to%20Host%20a%20Traveler%3A%2013%20Tips%20to%20Keep%20it%20Safe%2C%20Easy%2C%20and%20Cheap" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20to%20Host%20a%20Traveler-%2013%20Tips%20to%20Keep%20it%20Safe%2C%20Easy%2C%20and%20Cheap.jpg" alt="How to Host a Traveler: 13 Tips to Keep it Safe, Easy, and Cheap" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/david-defranza">David DeFranza</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-host-a-traveler-13-tips-to-keep-it-safe-easy-and-cheap">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-travel-full-time-for-17000-a-year-or-less">How to Travel Full-Time for $17,000 a Year (or Less!)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-frugal-fall-getaways-you-can-start-packing-for-now">10 Frugal Fall Getaways You Can Start Packing For Now</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-free-accommodations-and-paid-jobs-on-boats">How to Get Free Accommodations (and Paid Jobs) on Boats</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-fun-affordable-travel-ideas-for-singles">6 Fun, Affordable Travel Ideas for Singles</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-easy-recipes-perfect-for-the-traveling-chef">5 Easy Recipes Perfect for the Traveling Chef</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Lifestyle Travel budget travel couch surfing guests house guests safety Thu, 12 Feb 2009 13:22:03 +0000 David DeFranza 2831 at http://www.wisebread.com