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travelers WITH a bike, but not ON a bike

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WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
travelers WITH a bike, but not ON a bike

We had some Guests recently who arrived in a hired camper truck ( with bicycles on the roof..)

When they left our city, they did so by long distance bus (for the next > 3000 km … at least !), carrying their bikes with them.

While they were with us, they spent a lot of time & energy planning their bus trip …( quite boring to us ..)

None of this was evident in their ( short) Profile, nor in their initial Request.

Now this couple have an excellent FB record, both as Guests but also as Hosts – they claimed to have Hosted many cyclists, which I believe. ( I find most FB nauseating to read…)

By coincidence, I have always thought it very important to provide FB to both Guests and Hosts, and I would like to “alert” future Hosts to this phenomenon – travelers WITH a bike, but not ON a bike.

I just can’t bring myself to “ neutral card” them, due to their good FB. If I did give them Neutral, it would be their first less-than-Positive FB.

BTW : I don't suspect any sc@mming intent in this case, it's more that I think they just don't understand how *special* is the WS ethos : that Hosts go out of their way for *bicycle travelers* , but not for people relying on motor transport.

But at least, I believe this background should be in their Profile ....

BTW : I am sure this has been discussed before, but how to find it in the massive rubble of this overly-complex website ?

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
Surely alerting them when

Surely alerting them when they rocked up at your doorstep that WS is for hosting human powered travellers only (your choice if you continue to host them or not) would have been more productive. Whether they are abusing the system or just blissfully unaware they are only going to continue doing so if nobody tells them. If they at least had a warning and it was articulated in feedback any further transgressions could be interpreted as abuse and appropriate action taken.

A word to admin might be the best course of action at this stage.

Unregistered ユーザー anon_user の写真
change your profile NOW

To avoid this difficulty in the future, change your profile. Make specific notice that your services are intended for the self-contained bicycle touring individual only. Only!! No vehicles allowed, especially SAG wagons. And it will eliminate the problem in the future. Guaranteed.

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
Except that a large

Except that a large proportion of guests don't bother reading hosts' profiles.

This is a fundamental rule of the WS community, nobody should be accepting guests travelling by non human powered means.

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
We had a similar issue once,

We had a similar issue once, but they had the grace to explain before they arrived that circumstances had changed and they'd been asked by another traveller to sell a van/camper, hence would be arriving in it.
They were a charming round the world cycling couple so we didn't mind. However we did still feel that they could have gone to one of the free camping areas in town as they were no longer true cycling travellers.

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
Make your views clear!

Please write a profile that is clear that you don't want to meet anyone who doesn't arrive by bike. This is NOT a universal preference among WS hosts, so don't assume anyone would know it. I have hosted cyclists without bikes and have been hosted while my wife is traveling along with me in a car. I have had wonderful hospitality with people who, themselves, never bicycle. The world has lots of variations of preferences and convictions; please don't assume that your host/guest shares your views. Put it in your profile, up front, and we will be able to get along without feeling animosity.

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
There should also be full

There should also be full disclosure by the cyclists in their initial contact with the host. If there is not, I would not hesitate to give neutral feedback. At the very least, my feedback would include direct reference to the mode of travel.

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
Make your views clear!

Absolutely; the request for hosting should include a clear disclosure of everything relevant -- like the inclusion of a car in the caravan. But, if this caveat (bikes only) is in the host's description, I don't think there will be many applications from people traveling with cars.

While we're at it: -- I've been laid pretty low the last couple years by health problems and now only take short rides on a bike with electric assist. It's still a bike in that, if I don't pedal, it doesn't move. But, the motor helps me by various amounts depending on terrain, etc. I wonder what those who object to motorized tourists would say if I were to go on a bike tour with this kind of bike? Would you reject me because I'm not doing it all with my own power? or welcome me as someone who is continuing a beloved practice in spite of problems? Just wondering.

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真

In more than 20 years of WS membership, I don't recall EVER refusing a request, and that has led to some less than satisfactory outcomes, when visitors omit reference to their unusual circumstances.

But I will do now, to people whose Profile is not " up to date", with a coherent explanation of their present travel.

People WITHOUT bikes are very welcome , but they can pay our AirBnB prices !

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
electric assist bike.

A friend of mine went on a long bike tour (1600 miles?) with his wife, her first tour. She used an electric assist bike, her only option to ride with her husband. I personally think that Electric Assist bikes can potentially open up bike touring to a larger segment of the population. If you show up during a bike tour with panniers without the "assist" of a car, you would be welcome.

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真

"....- I've been laid pretty low the last couple years by health problems and now only take short rides on a bike with electric assist. It's still a bike in that, if I don't pedal, it doesn't move. But, the motor helps me by various amounts depending on terrain, etc. I wonder what those who object to motorized tourists would say if I were to go on a bike tour with this kind of bike? Would you reject me because I'm not doing it all with my own power? or welcome me as someone who is continuing a beloved practice in spite of problems? Just wondering....."

I presume you will have included this "qualification" in your profile ? If not, I suggest you do. I am meeting increasing number of people with electric bikes who are NOT ( apparently) invalids or disabled, as you imply that you are . I can't ask them : " are you disabled..?" it's not polite...but the disability does not usually seem apparent in such cases..

If and when someone turns up here ( by electric bike) expecting WS from us, AND they haven't mentioned this CLEARLY in their Profile, they might become my very first Refusal.

Unregistered ユーザー anon_user の写真
e-bike in the profile

E-bikes are booming. At least here in The Netherlands. No doubt about the positive influence. Seniors who would stop cycling in the past keep on peddling nowadays. Mountainbikes are more attractive with e-support. In my village without a highschool students more and more use e-bikes to race to their daily destination at 15 km distance. Rain or no rain...
Considering the benefits for our health, environmental effects and the doubtful mentality to use an expensive, gas swallowing car for every tiny purpose, we must acclaim this development.
Yes, I've put "e-bike" in my profile to be clear. My partner and I, both seniors, even recently tested e-bikes in the mountains to look at the effect. One of our oldest US-members, Jack Day, replaced his frontwheel this year and is enthousiast.
No, he is not disabled, but this condition it is not necessary to enjoy long-distance-cycling and be a 100% WS-member with the right mentality.

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
I would want to chat with e

I would want to chat with e-bike tourers on the road before I decide whether I am comfortable hosting them through WS or not. Often I am approached by expedition motorcyclists when I tour, as they seem me as part of the same "tribe". And yet, talking with them, it is obvious that their experience is extremely different from cycling, as they are going too fast to see the same things that we cyclists see, and they don't experience the same physical exertion. E-bike owners aren't going so fast, but does the greater ease of moving that way translate into a different experience?

(Or course, even if these modes of transportation are controversial on WS, I would happily host an e-bike owner, or those crazy "Around Europe on a Vespa" people, through another, more general hospitality exchange community.)

Unregistered ユーザー anon_user の写真
I would want to chat with e-bike tourers

Having a restday at the Altmühlsee in Germany during our annual cycle tour, I have time to tell you that we are amazed about the numbers of e-bike users in Germany. Not only the seniors, but also a big part of cycling youngsters show a huge amount of E-support. It seems to be "cool"...

Personal experiences are what they say: personal. (Not only about this subject, but in wider sense about more forum discussions.)

In our daily local contacts with these (E)-people, mostly above 60 years, they tell the same: we wouldn't cycle anymore without "E".
The "E" keeps us in the seat! It's a pleasure.
These "E"-people, often following the more touristic, prepared routes like Rhineradweg, Donauradweg, etc. enjoy life. Enjoy nature. Keep on using their muscles, enlarging their mental world and boost the economy in a climate friendly way. Normally the "non-bikers' use cars, busses, motorcycles, mobile homes, or stay at home.

Question: do you/we host E-bike guests?
Our answer: that's up to you as host.
If you don't feel comfortable to host e-bikers, just write that in your profile. That's a legal preference.
Be clear in your profile conditions.
Nobody HAS to host anybody, whatever your point of view as host are.

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
My wife and I are relatively

My wife and I are relatively new to WS and a few days ago we received a request from a man who said he had cycled through England and Scotland in 2015 and was cycling in Ireland and Northern Ireland this year. He said he was hoping to stay with us.

As he has good feedback from WS members that he hosted himself, we agreed to host him and he requested my address. I provided my location and asked if he would be cycling to our house from Dublin airport (since we live about 20km away).

He later replied to say that he would be driving. A few minutes ago I replied to him;


In your first message, you mentioned that you were travelling through Ireland by bike which is why we agreed to host you - that is the principal of the Warm Showers community - to host fellow touring cyclists.

However I just realised now that you are driving? I would really only prefer to host travellers on their bikes. I think people who drive around and stay free at people's homes shouldn't be using Warm Showers. They should use Couch Surfing for that purpose."

However as he is due to arrive at our house this evening, I really hope he reads my message beforehand. Otherwise an awkward conversation would be had when he shows up at our front door. Oh dear!

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
Is it possible that he is

Is it possible that he is just arriving to Ireland and has rented a vehicle to carry his bike in a box to your house and set it up there? That's all I can think of. I hope he gets in touch with you to clarify. I suspect there has been a misunderstanding of some sort. Any chance he said "driving" as in driving his bicycle there? If it were me, I would still host him but would be clear in the feedback that he is travelling by car.

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
As it turned out he turned up

As it turned out he turned up at my front door on his bicycle. English isn't his native language so hence my confusion when he said he was driving and he was using a sat nav.

As you say, when he said "driving" he really meant "riding/cycling" his bicycle, and by "sat nav" he meant cycle computer.

I am pleased to say that all is good now, he joined my wife & I for dinner yesterday evening and we talked for a few hours. It is a little bit difficult at times to understand him though because of two things- we are deaf and so we have to work hard to lipread him speak basic english in a heavy german accent.

But we do not mind. We are helping a fellow cyclist out - he has helped out other fellow cyclists in the past so it is important to us that we embrace the community spirit of warm showers where good members receive good karma!

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
This conversation shows one

This conversation shows one of the remarkable benefits of being involved with Warm Showers. Sometimes going outside your own comfort zone allows you to appreciate someone else as they struggle with the same. He was likely a little concerned about speaking and understanding English and there you were showing him that you were ready to receive him as a guest and not only would you be speaking English but you would need to understand what he said by reading his lips. Glad to hear that it all worked out.

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
Be Up Front

To avoid future confusion, you cane also state in your profile that you only host travelers who are cycling and actually on a bike trip. If they show up in a car, it is less awkward as the boundary is already set.

Usually members who join WS and state in their profiles that they are in a car traveling, but have their bikes with them for short rides, are deleted shortly after signing up.

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
Thanks for all your

Thanks for all your suggestions guys, I have updated my profile to be more clear about our conditions for hosting.

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
Occasional bikers

The problem of occasional biker is quite common.
I don't have issue with people doing one part of their trip by bus, this might happen sometimes if you judge that some portion of law interest don't deserve to be done biking (heavy traffic, bad commute, bad weather...) however I am totally oppose to people pretending to be bike tourer when they aren't or really occasionnally, i.e. done one trip by bike for a week 3 years ago.
had once a request from someone coming to town for business reason (she commented she had no bike but I thought she wanted to keep with bikers here), so I refused.
The problem is not only from guests but also from hosts, people who don't actually bike tour nor have intention to, think it's not the best interaction possible while touring around.

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
Just to be very, very clear .....

My original Post said NOTHING about electric bikes. I referred to people arriving by car, and leaving by bus - which seemed to be a habit for them. For what it's worth, I still have not given them FB, which troubles me.

As to electric bikes : I am sure they are fine for anyone who CAN NOT ride a conventional bicycle. For anyone else, an ordinary bike is a much better idea.

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
If they showed up at my place

If they showed up at my place in a car / camper and intended in leaving in the car, I would give them the phone number of nearby motels and tell them good day.

I see nothing wrong if they arrive by car and launch their trip from your home. Or end their trip from your home and then get in car to depart. I live very near the Great Allegheny Passage and the airport so I get a number of guests that do this.''

I have mixed feelings on those that use an electric bike for touring.

WS Member ユーザー WS Member の写真
Various kinds of part-time-bikers

I have seen many kind of these cases.
From the girl that arrived by bus, with a new bicycle still packed, since was easier to her to start the trip mounting the tool in my garage than in a station where would have also had problem to dispose packing material, to the man that arrived walking, but had already sent in the request a note that he was arriving in Firenze to stay with a friend, that would have kept his bicycle while he was flying home [1400 km far] for a family event and would have been back in 4 days, but his friend was not at home for the two days before his departure so he left bicycle there and come to my home.
I had also someone that come here with a camper to carry all stuff, then left camper in front of my home got bicycle and come back after four days to get it to move to another region.
use of ebike is cheating, but i have had one case where her in a couple had an ebike, and they used in unassisted mode on day trip and in ebike one during moves with luggages (the batteries were in the panniers, to have a lighter bicycle while riding daytrip).
Should I have refused them ?
On the other way i had people that told me that at 14 where at 130 km from my home but would have make it for 1930... good even i was not sure.
When they arrived one of them had a very old city bike, in bad conditions. I asked how he could have ridden 130 km on that wreck ...
He just replied that in their trip were traveling by train for longer distance and used the bicycles to ride around in tourist places.
Normally i say that in my house precedence is for people that come here walking or cycling, then people that come here by train, then those that comes by bus or other regular scheduled service (the difference is that with train i am sure that they can get a ticket to the station near my home, when they arrive in my city by bus it is a problem at bus station to get a ticket for city bus, so is not infrequent that people is up to 40 minutes late just for having to find a bus ticket), than those that come by car (but for last minute they are before bus riders), than those that comes HH or carsharing.
So I leave the last two available places until last minute to people coming by bicycle or walking, since I know that they are tho ones more subject to come earlier or later.
It is very sad when you have accepted someone that said to arrive with bicycle and then arrives by bus,. after you have refused a genuime cyclist to save the bed for the false one, expecially if at the end this one arrives late since you gave him the instruction to come to my home by bicycle instead than the bus [it was one that said to arrive in my city by bus during a trip.
Actually he had left the bicycle at 100 km of mountains from my home and come here for a two day visit in the city by train and after my place was going back to continue his trip. So he started to follow my indications, but after a bit realized that 16 minutes were by bicycle, not walking, so looked for a bus, and at end we had to hold dinner for 20 minutes, waiting his arrival (I assumed the 16 minutes from station)
So it would be nice that the guest in the request specify what are its travel plans the day of arrival (there is nothing bad to say that they arrive by bus, but if they say that they arrive in the city at 2055 by bicycle or with their car they are still welcome, but if they arrive by bus or train at 2015 they are not.)

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