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Leaving a Guest Home Alone Unattended

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WS Member Imagen de WS Member
Leaving a Guest Home Alone Unattended

I scanned through the topics and did not see this one in a subject line. So thought I would throw it out.

I have hosted 25 guests over the 2 1/2 yrs i have been a host. 9 so far this riding season.

What do others do about morning departure time ? I have to be work fairly early ( 7 am) and really feel bad about shooing
someone who has biked 80 miles the previous day out the door at 6:45. For one thing as the summer progresses it is not light enough
that early to be on the roads.

So far I have mentioned my morning departure time over dinner then quickly add, " i will not chase you out, here is a key lock
up hide the key at such and such location sleep in to your heart's content" i love the look of relief on their faces.
I generally leave a few written instructions about closing windows and signing the guest book. I have never come home
to anything bad , always a nice note in my guest book and the key where i told them to put it.
I figure anyone with the gumption to ride like they do will not rob me blind. They also know that if they did abuse the privilege
their feedback column won't look for them finding another home. I like the check and balance of this sight.

Anyone else have good or bad experience?

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
I'm in the same situation,

I'm in the same situation, having to leave home very early. So far, I never had the guts to leave my guest all alone in our house but your comment is very reassuring. Now, I have to convince my wife !

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
Leaving guests home unattended

Hi, we've left guests alone frequently! Never had a problem. We show them where everything is, and tell them to make themselves at home. If they're going to be round a few days (and they often are), we give them a key.

I agree that those with the gumption to ride round the world aren't in it rip others off.

WS Member Imagen de saltydog
Leave them alone all the

Leave them alone all the time, even tell them to raid the fridge, cabinets, and beer stash before they depart. Never an issue. Yes, there are risks, and it is tough to tell if someone is really looking to dash off with valuables. Someday I may eat my words and someone can "tell me so", but til then I'll do it my way.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
Beer stash?

now I have to make sure to plan my next tour through your neighborhood ;)

Hi Kevin: thanks for starting this thread. Had I only read it before we gave you our keys.... ;)

We do have a plan though: We have 3 fierce attack cats guarding our treasures. That must be the reason we only had great experiences so far.

Unregistered Imagen de anon_user
Our similar experience was

Our similar experience was with a collegiate team which we host once a year. We greeted them then left for a week. No problems since we know the college and team.

There has only been one rider I really felt iffy about leaving alone in the am.

WS Member Imagen de Aispugz
Leaving someone in your House

We too have had positive experiences in this area. Once, a guest was ill and had to be hospitalized for a few days. However, we were to leave on a short cycling trip ourselves. After living with the guest and her partner for a week, my husband and I talked about it and both agreed that the couple seemed very nice and trustworthy. We gave them a set of keys and said 'Stay until you are fully recovered'.

They watered our plants, put a dinner in the freezer for us upon our return and cleaned our apartment. This time it worked and I would do it again.

BUT I would always discuss it with my husband and listen to my gut instinct. I have never had a bad experience from this website though.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
As a guest there is nothing

As a guest there is nothing that feels more welcoming than a host who trusts you with their key.
On our trip we were away from home comforts for close to 3 years. Having a place where you can be out of the cycling grind for a couple of days is awesome. It is great to get to know usually likeminded people by meeting a host, often one ends up chatting until late. Therefore it's also often tiring in its own right. To have the next day(s) partly to yourself, indoors, is the best way to have a break and recharge for the next leg of your trip.
We have been fortunate to have many hosts leaving us in their home unattended. We were often allowed to use computer, 'raid the fridge' and so on. As a guest I think most cyclists know and should know not to abuse this hospitality, that is exactly what warmshowers is all about.
With a few of our hosts we are still in touch, almost 5 years to date.
We leave our home unattended to cyclists now, they show the same gratitude we used to feel, and we thrive on their stories, sharing with us their inspiration and excitement. We have never had a bad outcome, and even if that were to happen once or twice, I don't think it would defer us from hosting.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
Hoast leaving prior to guest from house

Since I am retired this is normally not a problem as host. Believe I would handle on a individual basis but subscribe to the theory that most WS guests realize big brother has tools!!

As a guest I have stayed when host left for work and I was trusted. I think it best to offer to get up and out if that appears what host is leaning toward.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
We have done this on

We have done this on occasion, and our experience has been good. We've never had a problem.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
Trusting guests

We've hosted lots of people, more from Couchsurfing than WSL. The incredible thing is how terrific all these people have been. If you generalized from the people who have stayed in our house, you'd have peace on earth and universal generosity and honesty! So, when needed, we've given guests a key. Never a bad result. At the same time, I can't recommend that others do the same. Clearly, one can be mistaken; a pleasant guest may be faking it or could succumb to temptation or go crazy. People are people. So, we choose to trust our guests because that's the way we want to live. If, someday, it costs us something, so be it. The many, many wonderful visits with trustworthy people will have easily been worth it. It's just our personal choice.

Unregistered Imagen de anon_user
Three days 'home' alone.

Our first WS 'guest' was a shocking disappointment. Our second guests party restored our faith in the touring cycling community.

We had committed to a tour when WS guests arrived. As we usually do after becoming comfortable, we invited them in. Three days later we had to leave for our own tour. We left our guests unattended! They stayed for a few more days. Since we have exchanged visits and become good lifelong friends, if remote.

Remember that our Island is a destination and not a waypoint, but Warm Showers guests are (almost) always welcome.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
Leaving with a Guest Present

I have only had two guests so far, the first one got the key to the house from the neighbors and came and went before I got home. The second one showed up that evening and I had to leave at 0500 in the morning. I told him he could stay, but he was not comfortable staying, so he got up and left when I did.

I am completely comfortable letting people stay at my house without me and over the years the worst think I have every seen is a mess in the bathroom:)

I look forward to hosting people and hope I can be home for some of them.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
I have been on both sides of

I have been on both sides of this, as a guest and a host. It is so nice as a guest to be able to relax and take the morning slow. I have had no issues as a host with leaving people alone.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member

I'm a new member here at WS, but have been with the national "Dachgeber"- community here in Germany for some years. I just trust the people I'm hosting and also experienced the same with my hosts. It's amazing how well it works- I really do appreciate this way of easy-going hospitality- it's a GIFT!

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
See it from the opposite side

See it from the opposite side : the guest himself may also question himself about how he can trust his host !

Once some WS guest had to go back home for two weeks and asked us to keep his (very nice) bike at home during all that time. It was nice to be trusted like that.

So yes, I always give a key to my guests and I ask them to make their live and use whatever they want to use, eat or drink in the house. I never had any problem. Sometimes the fridge was more loaded with beers after our guests departure.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
Though guests shouldn't

Though guests shouldn't expect it, this is a fairly stock standard arrangement in hospitality exchange. Maybe because hosting for many on WS involves guests showing up with darkness approaching and staying for just a single night, this isn't something that occurs as often (or is even taken into consideration) here.

I have even heard it whispered around campfires on moonless nights that there are hosts who leave their keys and their houses unattended to those morally questionable non-cyclists -gasp-

I'm fairly sure they were all robbed and murdered though.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
it works both ways

as a guest last month of another hospitality exchange host he took me on a tour of the city. The last stop was after dark on an unlit road overlooking the Pacific Ocean down below. I asked him if he brought all his guests there. Then threw them over the cliff and sold off their luggage. He only chuckled. but I did live to tell the tale so he must not always do it.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
But of course...

We have a shrine with the remains of uncooperative guests in our living room (ironic ,no?), we make sure to point it out to all newly arrived travellers during the welcome tour.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
Home alone

Chances are slim you would have problems from Warmshowers members. Many are proud of their feedback (reputation) and take great care. Yet there is bound to be a jerk out there that will eventually ruin it for everyone. I have stayed in a number of homes when the owners were out of town and I was unable to even meet them, but I make sure to contact them frequently to help make them comfortable with their decision.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member

I'm an older woman living alone, and am just not personally comfortable with strangers alone in my house, sorry. (My profile starts with "CAMPING ONLY.")

I leave for work at 7:30 in the morning. All my guests (except one) seem to wake up with the rising sun around 5 - 6 o'clock, have used the bathroom, eaten breakfast, packed up, and easily on their way before I depart for work.

I have an unlocked garage and a mini-fridge full of waters, beers, and lemonades, so they do have access to some areas when I'm not home.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
It's a very personal thing.

It's a very personal thing.

I (Michelle) usually have not qualms about leaving for work at 6:00am and letting my guests sleep in. I just tell them where to hide the key and that's it. No problems so far.

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