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How much time do you expect to spend with your guests/hosts?

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How much time do you expect to spend with your guests/hosts?

We've recently had some guests who wanted to stay with us for 2 days. We normally always accept it because we like to have guests at home. However, we ended up only seeing them on the first night, when we gave them dinner and chatted with them. They spent the rest of the time either in their room or out. Now we are wondering if we are expecting too much.

After hosting so many guests over the last 3 years, we have heard many anecdotes and we have even met other regular hosts. We've heard about hosts who are away but leave the key under the mat, others who let their guests camp in their garden but don't share any meal with them, etc. I think people understand Warmshowers from different perspectives and have different expectations.

I just wanted to know how other hosts see this issue. What do you expect from your guests?

I think it would be 'strange' to mention in our profile that we expect to spend some time with our guests if they stay more than one day.

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As a guest i normally ask for

As a guest i normally ask for one or two nights stay. if the hosts are in normally i spend most of my time with them, ether out and about or chatting around the table. i like to spend the days sight seeing, and if it's inconvenient for them, then everyone always seems to understand me going of by my self during the day. but when i'm back at the hosts place, i wouldn't stay in my room. seems a bit rude, no?! it's always a bit tricky figuring out the food status quo, but normally if they're not gonna feed me, they'l let me know before hand.

good post btw

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We usually host guests for 4

We usually host guests for 4 or 5 days as we are in a large city its not really worth their while staying one night then moving on to another host the next day. They often have lots of things to do whether its sightseeing, repairing/replacing gear or packing their bikes and arranging for their flight back home. We don't really have expectations with regards to the amount of time they spend with us, we always invite them to accompany us for dinner and usually take them out at least one night for drinks/dinner at one of our haunts the rest we play by ear.

I'm always mindful of giving guests their own time and space so they can do what they want rather than sitting them at the kitchen table and chewing their ears off. Having been on long tours myself I know there can often be long lists of things to catch up on when arriving in large cities. But they're all different some like to go out all day everyday to see the sights, others like to talk and spend time with us at home, we don't mind. What peeves me a bit is all the hours online dedicated to blogs etc, this really creates a barrier, but I understand it is the way of the modern touring cyclist.

I'm not sure if it would be strange to put that in your profile - maybe put something like 'We like to spend time with our guests - if you'd like to join us around the table for a cuppa or a meal or on the bikes for an outing we'd be happy to oblige'

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guests and hosts

it can be difficult to meet your own expectations, and those of your guests. i do recommend finding a way to encourage what you want, and discourage those who have other desires. i haven't used couch surfing, but i've heard that their filters are very specific regarding both parties. things also change over time as you experience more guests, and their general behavior.
as i do not care to host cyclists who want to be on the internet the entire time they visit, i have stressed in my profile the lack of wifi/cellphone service availability and our distance from town (all true). i also list what you can and can't do at our place due to the isolation and our off grid life style. this seems to have weeded out the folks who want a single night stay or more access to town amenities. my goal to to host cyclists who want a restful stay in a lovely remote site with lots of socialization. i often facilitate trips to town for errands and resupplying.
when i changed my profile a few years ago, at first i thought it was too harsh. but it has succeeded in the sense that folks know what they're getting in to before they arrive & seems to attract the right bunch which ensures a better fit for us. this is a big help as most of our visitors stay 3-5 days, or return after an out-and-back trip.
good luck, and i hope you find the right balance for your kind hosting generosity!

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How much time do you expect to spend with your guests/hosts?

I think it is good to put in your profile that spending time with your guests is meaningful. For us, having a mix of independent time and social time together works well. I've also had to realize that having a comfortable bed and a lovely long sleep is the most wonderful experience we can offer some very tired cyclists!!

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I have been fortunate to have spent many evenings with various hosts as well as hosting many cyclists (and non-cyclist through participating in Couchsurfing).

As a guest, I can converse for hours; I can also pick up signs from my hosts that they don't have a lot of time to host me. I try to remember that things can change from the time I accept a guest's request to their arrival at my front door. Also, I have arrived dead tired, wet, in need of food, and in need of laundry - and bless my hosts when they sense this and step up to the plate to meet these needs. My experiences allow me to accommodate others when they arrive with needs that I may not have considered.

You are doing a wonderful job of meeting your fellow travelers' needs. Some guests will do a better job of meeting YOUR needs, and some travelers will need THEIR needs met. Be glad that those that can "give" give and be glad that those in need have you.


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guests are like a box of chocolates - you never know what you gunna get.
(feedback is great of course along with a blog or facebook page)

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Expected stay

I normally ask to stay just one night unless something unusual is up. Many times I am asked to stay longer and I oblige, but expectations are for a one night stay. Warmshowers is a social organization. Manners and courtesy cause me to arrive in town around 3 pm to take care of wifi and shopping needs before meeting my hosts. This way I can get to know them and do not offend anyone by going in my room for the evening or taking off without asking them to join me. If you are a loner, you should not be a member of WS. If a host feels unappreciated or used once you leave, you have been rude.

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At least one evening meal!

Hi Macia and Steve,

We are one of a handful of active hosts in a large Asian city, which acts as a starting point or ending point for many cycle tourists in this region. It's not practical for most of our guests to stay just one night, so we often have guests who stay for several days. We make it clear in our profile and our initial emails that we enjoy sharing at least the first evening meal with our guests, so that we can get to know each other. Given that we are opening our home -- and family life -- to strangers over many days, I think it is not unreasonable to expect some time getting to know our guests.

After the first night, we generally tell our guests that they are welcome to join us for meals if they wish (and often they do) or to stay out sightseeing, but kindly ask them to let us know their plans either way. Alternately, if we are busy, we tell our guests that we aren't able to dedicate much time to helping them or guiding them around the city, give them a key and a city map, and let them get on with it.

Each host and each guest probably approaches the Warmshowers arrangement differently, so we generally find it works best to assume nothing and communicate your preferences clearly. Happy hosting!

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Luckily i've never had to

Luckily i've never had to deal with that sort of problem because i prefer my guests only stay one night and if they stay more, its because we have discussed up front the reasons and so on.

I can see that it is a delicate matter though to put in your profile that you expect guests to eat with you or spend more time with you. If that is your expectation, you will need to find a way to get the information out of them. For instance you could ask them what their plans are either before they arrive or on the first evening. I agree it would seem a little odd to put your expectations into your profile but at least you wouldn't have people come to stay who didn't want to spend time with you.

People on a tour do have jobs to do and can be tired but even so, i agree it seems a little rude if your guests are avoiding you in which case you might just mention their behaviour in the feedback.

I nearly forgot to say that for my part, i wouldn't mind at all if my guests didn't spend the second day with me but i would like to know in advance what they are doing so that i know i dno't have to worry about them, au contraire, if i wanted to cook for them, whether they'd turn up to dinner.

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How much time do you expect to spend with your guests/hosts?

I feel so positively about touring cyclists, and have so much respect for them generally, that I make many more allowances for how they spend their time than for Couchsurfers or Wwoofers- be it their patterns of sleeping, visiting local attractions or socialness.

I have found recently, though, that I am put off by certain cooking and eating patterns- specifically people who eat very late at night. We are early risers in the morning, and do not enjoy going to bed on a full stomach from dinners eaten after ~ 8 - 11 pm. I think it is important that guests respect the hosts patterns of meal times and not expect their host to adjust, in our instance, to their preference for late evening meals. We are not running a hostel and the kitchen as such is not open for business 24/7 for our guests use in meal preparation. There are patterns that get out of sync which may seem petty-- like filling the dishwasher after the evening meal, cleaning the counter, sweeping and mopping the floor - and thus for us everything being cleaned up, put away and tidy in the kitchen by 9 pm. It is, after all, our house and kitchen and basically our equipment and food - and the guests need to adjust to our schedule and patterns and not disrupt our harmonious flow of activity and house husbandry. Okay to be different for a 1 night late arrival stay perhaps, but when guests are staying more than 1 night-- respect for the hosts timetable works best.
Sometimes our guests do not want to cycle around the local sites and our favourite bike routes, which I find a little disappointing. We always have such a good time when we do go cycling together on our country roads and urban coastal walkway/bikeway.

Warmshowers is wonderful and so are the people who host and the guests who travel. Flexibility, honesty, and kindness go a long way in making this a successful and enjoyable social network,

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