<ul>Some years ago most of people, in order to organize a travel, used to search in travelling drivers or adress to travel agencies... </ul>
<ul>Nowadays, things have totally been changed...the internet and social media have become the most widespread tools of searching and booking travels all over the world </ul>
' Travel stories' is the biggest greek forum in which members can upload photos and videos from their travels, make recommendations and exchange experiences. Also they can book their tickets, hotel and be informed about which is the most appropriate way to reach their destination.
' Tweet travelers' is connected to tweeter and through this you can have a direct contact with the other followers who use any hashtag about travels. You can also find information about accomodation, sightseeings and events http://tweettravelers.com/
'Tour Absurd.com' is a photoblog in which members upload personal photos from their experiences during their vacations and make comments. They also discuss about a variety of issues through which they broaden their views of the world http://www.tourabsurd.com/
'Airbnb' is a global network of accomodations offered by locals. It is fun and very cheap especially in big cities.It is reffered to people who don't want to stay at a hotel. Of course all members leave a review http://www.airbnb.com/ http://techcrunch.com/2011/05/30/airbnb-has-arrived-raising-mega-round-at-a-1-billion-valuation/
Our study was focused especially on Couch Surfing....
' Couch surfing' is an alternative way of travelling which offers you a totally adventurous experience. The members have the opportunity to host as many people as they want or to travel to other countries as guests. They gain lots of experiences, they make friends from all over the world and finally they meet other cultures. And all these...with no charge!
Here are some interesting reports from all over the world relatively with CS <ul><li>http://shnifti.soup.io/post/87132126/YouTube-New-Social-Movement-The-CouchSurfing-Project
The next step was to become members of couch surfing so as to come closer to this. We communicate with so many people around the world...but our concern was to explore how widespread is cs in Greece. These are interviews with some of the most interesting 'couch surfers' we came in contact... <ul><li>Πάνος Κατσανάκης http://www.slideshare.net/an8ea/ss-8060759
Θανάσης Kristen Andersen http://www.slideshare.net/an8ea/kristen-andersen
Some statics about cs in Greece <ul><li>Couch Surf in Greece is at a very initial stage
People can not understand easily the ideology of couch surfing
Most of the greek popularity is at least suspicious with cs
Most of couch surfers are men on a overwhealming majority </li></ul>
Basic features of a couch surfer... <ul><li>Can not tolerate the usual way of travelling....booking tickets, hotels, timetables...
Is a 'free spirit'...he wants always to feel free and to have space and time to do whatever he wants ..whenever he wants...no rules! No limits!
He prefers to travel mainly by bus, bicycle and whenever he has not even these...by hitchhiking </li></ul>
<ul><li>He is a little bit more 'clever' from us...because he does not spend a small fortune to book a luxurious hotel...he feels also comfortably either in a couch or in the floor
The reason that a couch surfer accepts other people at his house is because he loves hospitality, exchanging opinions and ideas, being in contact with other cultures....
He likes to have a native person who guides him to the most interesting places of his town </li></ul>
<ul><li>Most of couch surfers are 'heavy' users of internet and especially of social media. They think that internet is the most basic 'tool' for making their trips more easier. They use it for finding the most appropriate roads, sightseeings, events...
Every person who uses couch surfing is absolutely sure tha cs is safe and everyone from us can use it with no fear
Generally, couch surfers are 'alterntive',open-minded persons who like adventure
Finally, greeks need time to understand the ideology of cs and get used of it... </li></ul>
Through the above ways of searching and booking holidays we can observe the features of being a 'prosumer'. The most essential feature is that there is no mediator and members who want to organize a travel have to be in a direct contact only with the person who has a special offer for them. This is an intensively interactive procedure as members become both 'producers' ( upload photos -videos, make comments) and 'consumers' ( find interesting information, gain experiences and broaden their views) silmultaneously.