Accommodation is not included in the CoLab seminar, because we’d like to introduce you to something so much nicer than a hotel room: local hosting. We’d like to open up the opportunity for international baristas to find a place to sleep with a local barista. We think local hosting is a nice way to meet new friends, get an insider’s perspective on a new city, and help you get the most value out of CoLab. Read on to find out how you can request hosting, or offer a bed to a new international friend!

Hosting

What is local hosting?

Hosting or being hosted by local baristas is a great way to meet new people and get to know the local culture! In our opinion, it is a fundamental part of CoLab’s exchange experience.
You live in Belfast and have a spare sofa, bed or floor space? As a host you will provide a place to sleep during the CoLab event. It's a fun and rewarding experience, and you never know, maybe your guest can return the favour when you go to an event in their city!
You are coming to Belfast and looking for a place to stay? Some local baristas would love to host you and help you with any questions you might have, from the fastest way to get to the venue to the best (secret) places in Belfast. Discover your host’s favourite places, share meals and drinks, and exchange stories. Maybe even end up geeking out about coffee at 6 in the morning, or becoming great friends. All while saving money, what’s not to like?!

How to request hosting or sign up as a host?

Request hosting or sign-up as a host by emailing: baristaguildofeurope@sca.coffee. It is important you provide us with as much information as possible, so we can do our best to pair you up.

As a guest
You can only request one place, but you can let us know any friends you'd like to be put with in the special information field. Please provide us with as many details as possible (e.g. animal allergies, gender preference, smoking preference, etc.). We'll do our best to fit in with your requests. Please remember that we cannot guarantee places: we can only place you if we have places available, so those who register first have more chance to get hosted! The hosting arrangement is for the two nights of CoLab – Nov 28th and 29th. If you want to stay any longer, you need to discuss this with your host well in advance. As soon as we have a matching host, we will put you in contact and together you can hash out the details.

As a host
Please consider how many baristas you can comfortably host, and provide us with as many details as possible (e.g. what type of sleeping space, do you own any animals, gender preference, smoking preference, etc.). We ask our hosts to make sure to have availability for the two nights of CoLab – Nov 28th and 29th. If you’re happy to have guests over for longer, you can, but you are not obliged. We also ask you to be available to meet your guests no later than during the meet-up tour on Tuesday Nov 28th from 3pm. As soon as we have a matching guest, we will put you in contact and together you can hash out the details.

Hosting Tips

So you've agreed to be a host or be hosted - that's great! Maybe you've never hosted someone or been hosted before, so here are some tips that we think will help make your hosting experience the best it can be.

As a host
You'll want to get in contact with your guest(s) early to find out about their travel arrangements, tell them how to get from the airport to your house, or where you will meet them, etc. You also need to let them know if they need to bring anything - towels, sleeping bags, local delicacies :). As a host you're not expected to accommodate your guests longer than the Nov 29th, but you may choose to do so. It is always a good idea to discuss arrangements before the event to avoid awkward conversations. If you are unable to travel to the venues with your guests, you should point your guests in the right direction for the nearest tram, metro or bus or train stop. Lastly, you are not responsible for feeding your guests but going out for dinner together on the first night is a great idea. If you are a great host your guests might return the favour and have you to stay at their place sometime during a next CoLab or barista event.

As a guest
It is a good idea to get in contact with your host and let them know your travel details. Also ask about what to bring, such as bedding, towels, etc. Ask your host where you will meet them, and how to get there from the airport. You will be responsible for feeding yourself and remember that you are a guest in your host's house so you are expected to tidy up after yourself. Offering to make coffee and breakfast in the morning is also seen as very good guest behaviour. It is also a nice idea to bring something for your host - like a thank you card, local delicacies, or some coffee from your hometown. If you are a lovely guest your host will be more likely to have you stay next time and you might want to return the favour and host them at your place one day.

Still have questions?

If you have any more questions about being hosted, just hit us up via baristaguildofeurope@sca.coffee and we will answer as soon as we can.

Registration for CoLab: Belfast is now open, and with prices starting at €85, offers amazing value. Tickets include all the activities listed in the seminar program: an incredible line-up of speakers, tours to discover Belfast’s best kept secrets, and an amazing opportunity to meet Belfast’s coffee scene and people.  Please note that tickets do not include accommodation, though we offer the opportunity to request hosting by local baristas!