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Safety Newsletter

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This page contains information that might not be up to date anymore. It's still here for informational purposes, and can be used as a base for something new, as well as for being updated by people like you.

This newsletter has been sent out.


Dear CouchSurfers,

Today we have over 140 000 CouchSurfers and more than 44 000 (Joe will do query and we can update this number) positive surfs took place. Most of us agree in saying that CouchSurfing is a beautiful concept, expanding the possibilities of travelling experiences, developing intercultural understanding and breaking down boundaries between different people. Some others persons abuse this system.

In October, a CSer stole:

  • Over $4000 in cash,
  • A credit card
  • and other belongings.

Here are testimonies from two of his victims:

"MrX came to stay with me on the 12th of October 2006. About a week later, he explained his financial situation to me: he sent his card home in his pants pocket by accident (so he said), and needed a bit of help. He had me deposit a Check on November 1st for $750.00. The funds were put into my account by the bank, they were used for various things throughout his stay. The bank then took the funds out of my account saying that they never really existed. He left shortly thereafter that to go see another surfer in Texas and then went back to LA. He was supposedly coming back out here to take care of everything with me, which is when he stopped returning my calls, and made a post on couchsurfing in one of the groups, and then deleted his profile after the first negative comment was left. " (Couchsurfer 1 - Connecticut)

"MrX came in town on a Friday, around 6pm. He gave me two COMChex already filled out. One for 800 and on for 935$. I deposited them via the ATM because the bank was closed. I waited a few minutes and saw that they has posted to my account. We went and spend a lot of money at the bar and eating out during the weekend. Before he left on Monday we went to the bank again and I withdrew the last of his money and handed him cash. He had also bought a plane ticket for over $300 while he was here. I took him to the airport. Two days later I checked my account and those checks ahd been returned. I called the bank and apparently those checks werent registered. I called him and he told me he would send me the money. It ended up being approx. $2200. He never sent the money and now won't answer the phone. " (Couchsurfer 2 - Texas)

You can see how this "MrX" has cleverly exploited members of our community. This nightmare can happen to any of us.

In CouchSurfing, we try to keep the community as tight-knit as possible through references, friends, etc. However, those tools are yours. Refer your negative experiences with your hosts or guests, and don't pretend to trust someone if you don't. If you cover them, such situations are likely to keep happening.

Our primary concern is our safety; it is everyone's responsibility.

In the event of a problem with other members, please refer it in the "Contact Us"[[1]] questions and use the reference system.

Travel safe,

The CouchSurfing Team

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