CouchSurfing as a special philosophy of travel Cover Image

CouchSurfing as a special philosophy of travel

Author(s): Liubov Bozhko
Subject(s): Media studies, Cultural Anthropology / Ethnology, Theory of Communication, Sociology of Culture, Tourism
Published by: Національна академія керівних кадрів культури і мистецтв
Keywords: CouchSurfing; Hospitality; group practice; tourism; guest network; trust;

Summary/Abstract: The purpose of the work. Over the long history of development of human travel there has developed a specific form of hospitality, which acquires a new meaning and new forms in the new information society under the influence of globalization. One of such forms is CouchSurfing. The research is dedicated to cultural study of CouchSurfing. Research methodology consists in the use of comparative, historical and logical methods. Specified methodological approach allows to reveal and to analyze CouchSurfing as a social and cultural phenomenon and new relations in tourism. Scientific novelty of work consists in the fact that the socio-cultural phenomenon CouchSurfing is considered as a special form of travel with its philosophy, conducted on the basis of cultural and historical methodology. As a result of the research theoretical principles characterized by scientific originality are formulated. It is noted that CouchSurfing is a new form of hospitality and social phenomenon, based on trust, gratitude and desire to help. Cultural analysis shows that CouchSurfing is based on collective practices implemented locally, therefore an important role is played by the socio-cultural features of a specific country. The analysis of the history of CouchSurfing and the ideology of this phenomenon has allowed to come to certain conclusions. Conclusions. The person who participates in Couchsurfing seeks alternatives to large-scale tourism experience and tries to learn the culture on the basis of the local point of view. Authentic cultural experience obtained through the Web site, and then personally, can grow into a lifelong friendship and is a new opportunity for people. Thus, functional content of tourism practices itself is changing, indicating the occurrence of new needs for wide circle of people, who are not satisfied within the frameworks of classical tourism.