Author Topic: Warm Showers Reliability  (Read 9619 times)

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Offline mucknort

Re: Warm Showers Reliability
« Reply #15 on: April 13, 2019, 08:24:38 pm »
I understand your frustration Neil, but I respectfully disagree with starting over with a “core list”. I feel the WS system has a great checks and balances with the reputation system. That’s why I always read what has been reported about potential hosts and guests (and write honestly about hosts and guests I’ve encountered). I sincerely hope that you wrote in the comment section that one guest showed up on foot (and reminded them there is another appropriate online community called “Couch Surfing” that is for folks walking, driving, and any travel mode besides bike touring) and that another changed their mind 2 hours before arrival. This is the kind of info I look for when someone sends a request to stay at my house. If a previous host or guest of someone writes something adverse on someone’s profile I’ll certainly take that into account in my decision whether to host or be a guest. I’ll just throw in that with dozens of hosting and guesting experiences I’ve never had a bad one, and in asking other hosts I’ve only heard of 1 bad experience. I’ll add that I do a final assessment on a guest’s suitability by attempting to talk to them on the phone as they get close, if possible (one benefit to the prevalence of cell phones).

Offline adventurepdx

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Re: Warm Showers Reliability
« Reply #16 on: April 13, 2019, 08:37:25 pm »
Good response  :)
Finally, we had a bad year in 2017 with Warm Showers, 4 requests, one looking to do a cider tour with their friends, nope. Another turned up on foot, didn't even own a bike and had no intention of ever hosting. Another did the contact multiple contact thing (hence the comment) The last though was the worst. They booked , we agreed, and as we do we prepared the room, I arranged an earlier finish from work and we bought something for dinner (OK it's not in the rules, but that's what we do) She E Mailed 2 hours before arrival saying they were feeling strong, so would stay somewhere else.
When it works it's a beautiful thing, we used the original USA list in 1999 before Warm Showers. Maybe 250 Nationwide and we stayed with 5 families on a 7 month trip. It added to the holiday and we have fond memories of every stay. Today 200 sign ups to warm showers when an article talks about it, yes folks it's too big, what's needed is a core list again.

I agree with mucknort, a "reboot" isn't needed, it's about parameters.

I've used WS for almost 10 years. The good experiences outweigh the bad, on both the hosting and hosted side. As for hosting I try to be as clear in my profile description of what i can/cannot do:
  • I try to give a good li'l snapshot of me and my touring history. So many WS profiles are barely two sentences and no photo.
  • I note that I need a certain amount of warning to host. I'd rather have the bandwidth to be able to engage with my guest, rather than simply giving them a bed or floor space.
  • After getting one request by someone who was not on tour, I made it explicit in my description that I'd only be hosting people on a bike tour
  • And I keep my address and phone number turned OFF so I don't get anyone randomly showing up or those last minute text messages

Offline EmilyG

Re: Warm Showers Reliability
« Reply #17 on: April 20, 2019, 12:10:20 am »
Our strategy on tour last year was similar to mucknort's.   When we knew we might need/desire a Warm Shower host (we wanted to socialize/meet folks, we weren't sure about camping opportunities, we wanted to cook a meal in a kitchen for others....) looking at the week ahead, we would scan the map, and contact possibilities 3-4 days before we thought we might be passing through.  If we heard back from multiple folks, we chose the one who was closest to our route.  We really enjoyed cooking meals for our hosts.  For us, Warm Showers is a way to meet people and share the love of cycling, and we were not disappointed. 

We were diligent about communicating our trajectory realistically, and if our plans changed due to weather or any other factors, we would check in to see if the new timeline still worked.  Several times, we got sidelined by thunderstorms and delayed, and once we were able to boomerang ahead by a day due to favorable winds.  It all worked out, with communication.

As hosts ourselves, we have had great experiences. Just wish we were closer to a main route!

Offline geegee

Re: Warm Showers Reliability
« Reply #18 on: April 23, 2019, 02:42:21 pm »
I host more than I use Warmshowers as a guest. With very few exceptions, I've practically accepted everyone who has asked. However, when I do tour, I never use it as a means to save money, I look at it as a way to meet other cyclists. I'm pickier when it comes to finding hosts, if I don't find anyone interesting to stay with in a particular area, I don't bother asking and look for paid accommodations which I budget for anyway.

Offline CanvasAndSteel

Re: Warm Showers Reliability
« Reply #19 on: May 08, 2019, 05:09:40 pm »
From April 15 through 24, I contacted 16 WS hosts to see about availability for a tour starting June 9.  To date I have heard back from 8.  I think a 50% response rate is pretty fair. 

Offline hikerjer

Re: Warm Showers Reliability
« Reply #20 on: May 08, 2019, 05:57:23 pm »
I'd agree. That's a pretty good response rate.