A Vagrant’s Guide To Couch Hopping (Or, How To Survive The MICF Without Paying Rent)

By Scrooge Scab-Stinge*

Hey you! Yes, you! Have you ever needed to stay somewhere without spending those barely-earned $$? Well, fear not! Here are 12 easy steps to follow in order to make the most of your couch hopping experience!


  1. If there’s more than one person staying in the offered lounge room, always get there first—‘dibs’ is a universal and all-powerful rule.
  2. Leather couches are deceptive; whilst the leather may be comfy for sitting on and smell like delicious mahogany, you may find yourself having to peel off them in the morning. A secure sheet can stop that morning sting of skin on leather.
  3. A couch that folds out is a curse dressed up as a blessing—crossbars are perilous things. An ill-placed one under a thin mattress can hamper your ability to walk for days on end, and squeaky springs have the ability to put the kibosh on any lounge room alone time.
  4. There is more than length and depth to consider when picking your desired couch; low armrests can eliminate the need for a pillow, whilst high armrests make a good shelf.
  5. If travelling without appropriate bedding, the following things can make a delightful blanket:
    • – Jacket
    • – Towel
    • – Several pairs of underpants pegged together
    • – Cat
    • – Another couch
  6. If there are none of the previous items available, many op shops sell sheets and blankets. DO NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES BUY THESE; you often don’t notice the stains until you get them back to your residence.
  7. Lounge rooms are often the epicentre for activity in the house—you may find the people you stay with have a propensity for staying up until 4AM watching ‘Gossip Girl’. Feigning concern for the characters can cause the misunderstanding that this is a shared interest and can create banter. While good for maintaining relationships, too much knowledge of ‘Chuck Bass’ can create loss of will to live.
  8. Any pets in the house have right of way; remember, you are intruding on their space and they have sharper teeth.
  9. Couch cushions are removable and can be used as a makeshift floor mattress. Any coins found under said cushions are rightfully yours. Read the previous article by the same author, ‘A vagrant’s guide to other people’s money’.
  10. Sleeping-in is a grey area. If the people you stay with are lazy enough, this shouldn’t be a problem. If they’re business types, getting up for an hour before they leave for work can create an illusion of productivity.
  11. Borrowing of the underpants (clean OR dirty) of the people you stay with is frowned upon, IF they find out about it.
  12. If the worst does happen and the couch injures your back, REMEMBER: you could be in a hostel.

*The identity and whereabouts of the author are currently unknown; however he was referred to the AdelComBlog by one Angus Hodge, who can be found on Twitter under @Angus_Hodge

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