A new website – www.homefans.net – is launched today by Homefans to connect fans who need to find a cheaper accommodation on match days with locals who have a room to spare. Luke Verbeek is the creator of this new site which we featured on CQN Magazine earlier in the year. That feature attracted considerable interest. We thought we’d speak to Luke again on the day he launches the site…
What is the purpose of the new website?
After years of travelling to football matches, I was tired of staying in faceless, cookie cutter budget hotels and hostels on match days. There was no connection with local fans and the prices were often ridiculous. Luke thought there must be thousands of fans who are passionate football fans who have an empty room to share at any point in time. At the same time when we travelled to watch football in Europe, we never really knew anyone in the local area. Local fans who could show us around, connect with them and most importantly share football experiences with them.
Homefans is a community driven platform that connects travelling fans with local fans of their favourite club. Its peer-to-peer service enables fans to list, search and book accommodations with locals on match days. Homefans is a service that connects members to a global community of football fans, helping them find a place to stay on match days and experience football in a way money can’t buy.
Why is Homefans interested in reaching out to the Celtic supporters?After a great number of sign ups on Homefans thanks to CQN, Celtic will become one of the first clubs and destinations on the new platform. Homefans received a lot of pre-registrations from Celtic fans around the world and is excited to see more joining the new community.
At Homefans we received so much positive support from Celtic fans which is great to see. We think there aren’t many other stadiums and fans around the world that can generate an atmosphere like the Celtic fans do at Celtic Park. I’m coming to Glasgow next month and will look for a place to stay and connect with some local fans for a pre-match drink!
Celtic fans are always friendly and supportive. We hope we can welcome a lot of travelling Celtic fans on our new platform and help them to save more money on match days and help local fans to earn an extra income by simply being a great fan.
Can Celtic fans use this service to visit other cities across Europe to watch football?
Absolutely, it’s free for everyone to use. If you don’t have a spare space, but you’d love to register your interest to use this service in the future you can sign up on the website. Fans can register as guest and create a profile to search for a club via name or location. If you have a club you like abroad you can stay with a local fan together with friends or alone and have a great time abroad. Perhaps you will even host them in your house next time!
How do you deal with trust & safety issues on Homefans?
Well, Homefans is full of people you have never seen before so, sometimes, there is a fear when dealing with them, and they feel the same. If you want to stay with locals or become a host, you need to prove that you are who you claim to be and that your intentions are good. We integrated a ‘’reputation passport’’ for fans and a review system for people to use on the platform.
We want to make sure fans have a great time with others through Homefans and that’s why we integrated several tools for fans to use. People can exchange messages on the website before they decide to book a room with a local fan. We want to make sure everyone feels confident and safe when they book. Trust and safety within our community is our highest priority. There are great ways you can prepare and protect yourself as a host and guest on Homefans.
Finally can you give us a summary on why Celtic supporters might be interested in homefans.net?
Every day more and more football fans are signing up to become on Homefans. Accommodate Bhoys from around the world in your home, meet people from around the world, share experiences and make some money. It’s free to join!
As the Homefans idea spreads, you’ll help local people earn themselves an income, you’ll help visiting fans get more deeply involved when they visit your local area. If you have a spare room, enjoy meeting new other Celtic fans and want to earn some extra money? If the answer is yes, hosting visiting Bhoys in your home could be perfect for you. Become part of our amazing new community and interact with other Celtic fans on www.homefans.net!