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Hosts asking to be contacted a week - at least - before the meeting.

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WS Member Imagen de WS Member
Hosts asking to be contacted a week - at least - before the meeting.

I read A LOT of warmshowers profiles and I often see: "please contact me at least a week before".

I was wondering: what do you think about that?
My point of view is : when you travel by bike, it s virtualy impossible to plane so long in advance, because of the weather, technical problems and so on. Personnaly I allow people to contact me the day before, or even that day. Of course the reception won't be perfect that way. But does it always have to be?

Honestly, I sometimes wonder if it's not a "tactic" to avoid some demands.... but maybe I'm wrong :-).

What is your point of view on this?

Jean-Denis

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
visitor notice

hi jean denis,
you raise a valid point in this age of easy texting and good cellphone service. i live in a remote area of central alaska. if guests are coming, i like to make sure i have plenty of food and beverages available, as the nearest store is 25 miles away. i also like to clear my schedule of mundane chores so i can fully engage with my guests- i relish hearing their stories and looking at their photos. often there is detailed routing for their future journeys to discuss. perhaps we will paddle the local river, or go to the hot springs. cycle tourists have put a lot of money and effort to reach alaska, i want it to be a memorable visit. frequently they are completely drained from riding the 500 miles of the dalton highway from prudhoe bay to fairbanks- i provide a rejuvenating and recharging sanctuary. i also want to know something about the guests before they arrive- exchanging a few emails helps a lot. warm showers is not like couch surfing where you can really sift through guests/hosts for preferences.
when i first signed up for warm showers 15 years ago, i could only receive email messages- no phone or texting. i had to go to the library in town for the internet. communications have improved vastly, i think i will modify my notice request to be a little more lenient ( i am one of the "one week" people). however, i have received calls from folks wanting to know about that very night, which puts me in a bad spot- i want to be accomodating, and it is hard to say "no".
as long as i have a general idea when folks will arrive, and have time to prepare- they can show up whenever they want!
cheers,
janet

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
One week notice?

At heart, this is based on what a host feels they need in order to do just that, host. Who knows what constraints the host operates under?

That said, it may well be a ploy on the part of some to avoid hosting. It COULD be one of those "meeting the letter of the law but not the spirit of the law" things but there is no way to know what motivates such a request.

Knowing that bicycle touring involves a lot of "plasticity" regarding time, routes, weather, and other unknowns, it comes down to what the rider feels they can do or are willing to do. Not willing to commit to being somewhere in a week? Don't commit!

I've hosted well over 100 tourists over the past 3 seasons and don't require that much advanced notice. Curiously, this past week I've been contacted by two different riders nearly a month in advance of their arrival. It kind of throws me for a loop because I know that there is a lot of slip in bicycle touring and don't really expect them to arrive on a date given so far in advance, but that's on me.

I suppose the reality is, both hosts and guests post what they are comfortable with and make their decisions based on that.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
The last sentence says it

The last sentence says it all. A host can put as a requirement that you are in a top hat and tails at all times within his house - as long as he makes it clear on his profile what is the problem? It's up to the guest to decide whether they wish to stay under those conditions or not.

I'm really not sure why a 'host' would ask for a certain amount of notice to falsely give the impression of wanting to host. Why wouldn't they just mark themselves unavailable? Or do as many do and just ignore dozens and dozens of requests? The majority of members on this site haven't hosted, and many of them have no intention of hosting - it's not a crime. Isn't it more believable that due to work/family/whatever circumstance they need that notice. Not everyone is the same - is empathy so hard to come by?

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
As a host myself, I would say

As a host myself, I would say it's within their right to require this.
For us the earlier we know the better, we got kids, three of them, I work during the week, the kids got activities during weekend, it can be hard to fit everything together.

You got to remember that everyone has different situations, had I not had a wife and kids, you could basically knock on my door and I could give you a place to stay. but without time to prepare, move kids around, make sure we are home and all, I might not feel comfortable hosting at a short time, and for me (and I would guess a lot of others) being comfortable hosting is more important in the long run!

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
Hi Jean,I want to add more

Hi Jean,

I want to add more variety to what Mark said as Ole mentioned too. I think it is not only that different person prefer different routine but also for one unique person the situation may differ along the time. human ha?!! :)

Personally, I prefer the one week earlier notice and if they give me the notice 2 week or more in advance I think about them as more suitable guests. though this kind of guests 20% ( this statics is just based on my 6 requests I received :))of the time ended in other hosts house. that is not a good feeling to lost what you planned for but, what is the main goal? the cyclist has felt some kind of security because has had some appointment with a host and at the end of story he/she got a host for staying.
and yes this early notices have some , let say , floating appointments and one day sooner or later is in common and it followed by several message for synchronizing guest and host time!

but it happens to me the times that it is more practical to plan just "tomorrow" or even "today" and I do this way. sometimes I can just find someone else to help them.

And about mentioned "tactic":)
Frankly, I think a few people may act as you said. but a lot of people not. all the communities, virtual ( cyber) or real , are made of different people . completely pure is impossible in this matter. I experienced some great personalities because of WS, which helping them has been a pleasure for me. And keep in mind this second group can be different too. a person like Mark has had about 100 guest and someone like me just 3 or 5 guest. and last year I hasn't one !

have a good ride

P.S. To Mark or Randy: may I move this post to following sub-forum?
https://www.warmshowers.org/forums/general/community-experiences/hospitality-concerns-problems-and-...

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
advance notice

I think a week's notice is way too much to expect or need. I have hosted folks on anywhere from 2 months ( well one time) to a few days , most often the next day, once even all of 4 hours. I have always been able to accommodate requests whatever amount of time
they give me. But the same day request do not get catered to with special menu request
that I gladly offer ones with a bit more notice.
Like jean-davis says there are too many variables to think that bike routes can be planned
that far in advance. And a host that needs a week to prepare a place for a weary pedaler to put their head down, needs to either lighten up on the preparations or learn to be more efficient.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
One week?

In my opinion a week is way too much. Personally, all I really expect from a host is place to put my tent/sleep and a hot shower. How is a week needed for such simple accommodation? I don't expect food or company, I've proven I can take care of myself, c'mon, but I am totally down to share a meal or socialize if my host is inviting. Either way I am so appreciative of whatever they want to give. But at minimum, what I expect, and what I think all other tourists should expect, is just a place to sleep and shower. How much planning does that take?

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
Maybe it's for the cyclist's benefit

I find some of the judgements being made here quite extraordinary.

From where came the assumption that a host requesting notice doesn't grasp the plasticity of a touring cyclist's schedule, and expects their visitor at a time and date fixed a week in advance?

Contacting a host in advance allows the host to communicate to you any constraints on their availability, and reduces the likelihood that they will make plans that prevent them being able to host you when you show up. For example, if you contacted me I might say "Tuesday and Wednesday next week are out because I have other visitors here, but any other night you want to show up is fine", and you can factor that into your plans.

For me there's also the consideration that the weather where I live can kill the unprepared at any time of year, and I don't want someone expecting me to help them when I'm not home and not contactable.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
"Ten minutes notice" on my Profile

I have often noticed the long lead times that some Hosts specify. I wonder, why not a quick competition to find the longest on the whole site..? Say, six months ..?

All jokes aside, just think ; if the host specifies " one week' ( as many do), but the Guest cannot do that, then often the ( genuine) Host, who may be very ready & eager to host that day, will not get a request from that Guest ; while the Guest makes other, less interesting, arrangements. I call that a "lose/lose" outcome.

So, for me, while a lead time of a few days (or more ..) is useful, I realise there may be a need for a much shorter time, depending on circumstances ( weather, mechanical problem, injury, illness, accident...)

So for me , it's "ten minutes" notice required. / BTW I happen to be the longest serving WS in my country, and I have thought about this for quite a while...

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
Hey Bicycle Fish, great to see you're still here!

You sent a few lovely people my way 15 years ago when I was living in the Pilbara and last on WS. (From memory I got about a month's notice, but the outback is like that.)

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
I find some of the judgements being made here quite extraordinar

I thought so too but thanks to the wisdom of this forum I have discovered that there exists a diabolical underground network of faux hosts who will stop at nothing to give false hope to guests and through some unknown dastardly mechanism steal them from 'genuine' hosts! The invasion of the guest snatchers must be stopped!!

BTW I haven't been serving here anywhere near long enough but I have had guests who have inspired me to turn to the works of Schopenhauer in search of a little light hearted relief and I do hope to one day attain similar levels of host fatigue as some of our respected elders here.

WS Member Imagen de Rendellstanbridge
Jean I totally agree with

Jean I totally agree with you, unreasonable for us we can not tell exact day of arrival a week in advance I think people who ask this dont really know what its like on the road or have forgotten ! wind mountains dirrohea stolen bike !! all happen to us at various times which muck up our timings!!! Breige