FAQ

Can anyone join Gay Travel Exchange or do you have to be gay?
That's a great question and it is the same one my mother asked me. This is a site for TBLG people after all. But as we know, not only is the criteria for being a member of this community rather fluid but it is unenforceable. I mean, we don't require people to pass some sort of test. I also know people who are heterosexual who prefer to socialize with TBLG people. It is not about keeping anybody out as much as it is to create a global Queer community. If you consider yourself part of the community no one will argue with you.

What is TBLG?
We all know what GLBT is; Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Trans. I struggled for a long time about what I would call this site and there was no easy or even satisfactory answer. Calling it Gay Travel Exchange is a shorthand that is recognized globally but also leaves people out. By reversing the order of the letters it lets us hold up our Transexual sisters and brothers as first among equals, recognizing them whereas the name of the site does not.

Is this site free?
Yes, this site is free to use if you are a traveler or a host. I created this site in order to create a global community that anyone could afford to join no matter how little money they have. The cost of creating and operating the site is born by a single person. Your donations help pay for the site and are always welcome but are not required.

I don't have a place for someone to stay overnight. How can I still host?
I'm glad you asked! There are many ways to host. Gay Travel Exchange is not just an alternative to an expensive hotel, it is far more. You might offer a room if you have it but you might also offer to welcome a person to town and get them oriented. You might get them connected to the Queer community or even invite them along with you to the places and events that you go it. You might be a tour guide to show a person around town. You might meet a person for coffee or a meal so that neither of you is so isolated. Feel free to invent other ways of offering hospitality.

How can I be sure that I'll be safe?
The fact that you are asking the question will go a long way to keep you safe. Of course, when meeting anyone new you are responsible for your own safety. We have a few things on the site that can help. First, see if the person has been verified. By making a donation of any amount we are able to verify the person's name and address. If the person has posted the URL for other places on the internet where you can find them, take a look and see who they are. You can look at the stories they have posted and their photos. That will give you some idea of the person. Then, look to see what Reviews other people have left about the person and be sure to leave a Review yourself. But also, read the Reviews well. Some people may be reluctant to say something negative and others may simply be petty. Judge for yourself.

I can't find a host in the place I want to go. Why?
Gay Travel Exchange is in the Start-Up phase. That means that we do not have as many people on the site as we would like yet so there may be places that we don't have anyone to host. This is your community and the thing to do is to invite your friends to join asking them to invite their friends. Once we reach terminal velocity and we have take off there shouldn't be any problem in finding hosts no matter where you want to go.

I can't find the place I want. City not fund.
Do you know how many millions of cities there are in the world? Lots of millions. It doesn't make sense to have all of those cities in the database and so we put in the ones we think are most likely to be used. We ask you to help us crowdsource the rest. If you are looking for a place that is not in our database, use the pop-up forms to suggest it and we will include it.

Who writes for TripAdvisor?
The answer may surprise you. You do. When you write a story about a place you have visited or even your home town that gets posted on the TripAdvisor so that others can learn from you about the place you visited. It also gives you some credit for being the author. People who are interested in you because you are either a traveler or a host will get to learn what kind of things you are interested in and your take on the places you have visited. So please share your stories. You can also post your stories to your Twitter account or to your FaceBook page and send the URL for the stories to your friends and family. Writing stories is a way of creating a scrapbook of your travels.