DIY lodging options like Airbnb have revolutionized the way we travel. And while the hotel industry is not in any imminent danger of dying, many travelers have chosen the more personal — and often cheaper — option for their vacations.
The best way to get to know a place is through locals. With people who’ll explain the cultural quirks, know the cool local spots and can point you in a direction where you can successfully avoid being surrounded by hordes of Japanese tourists looking for the token city photo.
If you’re anything like me, food is an integral part of your trips. I will bypass an important museum for a hidden gastronomic gem 10 times out of 10. But sometimes when you travel by yourself, even the deliciousness of the best hole-in-the-wall in town won’t fully recreate the whole local experience.
But what if there was an Airbnb food equivalent? Something that allows you to, not only taste some of the place’s signature dishes, but hang out and break bread with locals in a relaxed and welcoming atmosphere?
EatWith is a global community that connects dinner party hosts with guests all over the world. Those with a culinary talent and a passion for hosting meals at their home can now organize some really memorable nights, while also making a bit of extra cash.
Travelers get to not only eat something great but they also get a much needed local perspective, while both parties get to meet interesting people and share stories.
EatWith was founded by Guy Michlin and Shemer Schwartz. Michlin was highly inspired by a superb dinner hosted by locals during a trip to Crete. Back home, he told his friend Shemer about it, and they set out to create a platform that enthusiastic guests and passionate hosts could use to connect with each other and curate their own meals; making these a sort of improvised and much more personal restaurant-esque experience.
“As a tourist, it’s easy to feel disconnected, like you’re walking in a bubble,” Michlin wrote on their website, “The best way to break the bubble and enrich your connection to a place is to interact with real people in their own private spaces.”
A number of big cities all over the globe are represented on EatWith. You just need to browse through the available options and book a date. Reviews of each experience are available, and those with the “EatWith verified” icon next to the host’s name are guaranteed to meet the quality and safety standards of the company.
Of course, you don’t need to be a tourist, or even be looking for local cuisine to use and enjoy EatWith. You can browse within the city you live in and hook yourself up for a specific craving, while also making new friends along the way. There aren’t many experiences that help people bond as quickly as with a nice homemade meal. So even if you’re just home and a little lonely, EatWith can make everything a little better.