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Surfer didn't show... what can I do ?
Posted July 12th, 2007 - 6:37 pm by from Bo'ness, Scotland (Permalink)
I've been a member for a while now and hosted some surfers. All has gone well to date but my last surfer has failed to turn up.

My wife is not over the moon with me inviting folk round but she normally gets into the spirit and enjoys it. This time as usual she cleaned the house and prepared dinner for the guests and we cut short our own trip to be home in time for them coming.

The surfer emailed me the day before to say they would be here in the afternoon.

But by 10pm last night still no sign of them and no messages by either email or phone.

And today nothing again... so we can only assume they are not coming.

It's very disappointing and disheartening.

What do people suggest we do.

Is it possible to leave negative feedback for these types of surfer who have no consideration for us hosts.

It will be some time before I invite anyone else.

Just wanted to get it off my chest.

Thanks, Gordon

Posted July 14th, 2007 - 6:26 am by from Auckland, New Zealand (Permalink)
I know how you feel and there is nothing more frustrating and totally deflating the enthusiasm. If I were you, I would leave a negative reference after a week without contact with the couchsurfer. sometimes things come up, traveling can be unpredictable. I have had people emailing me a couple of days after they were supposed to have arrived (and YES, I was waiting and had to reorganize my day!) and I just let it slide if they apologise nicely.
on the other hand, let us hope that the person is okay...i mean, bad things happen...so check if the surfer logged in on the site after the date he/she is meant to arrive.
And please keep the reference factual (as opposed to emotional), try at least.

hope your next experience turns out to be better, if you allow it to happen that is.

all the best.
CS Ambassador

Posted July 31st, 2007 - 6:40 pm from Berlin, Germany
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Posted August 14th, 2007 - 3:54 am by from Portland, United States (Permalink)
no way. I don't agree. As Dominika stated, things come up when you travel--it's usually out of your hands. That's the spirit and the facts of traveling: go with the flow and try not to get lost. Some people are meticulous, others are casual. Some have cell phones and internet access, others use old-fashioned courtesy. Rather than spend all your time trying to figure out who's who, just write in your profile: "No flakes. Please RSVP." To give them a reference when you haven't even MET them seems extreme, if not a waste of profile space.

What I do (and it's happened to me quite a bit, oddly), is write to them after a couple days and ask "are you okay?", which has a double-purpose: a) it assures that people are okay because i genuinely worry and b) gives flakes a twinge of guilt because i'm genuinely feeling put upon. Those that reply stay on my contact list. Like Dominika, perhaps, I occasionally outdo myself in preparations. On the other hand, I sometimes just leave a note saying my neighbour has the house key and I'll be home at 9pm.

I myself had to reschedule a couple times with my one host and on my second attempt I was a no show because of a death in the family. I wrote my host when i could, but she never wrote back. Neither did she give me a reference. I understand. My first host was totally cool with my high maintenance, but unintended schedule and even had to intercept phone calls between friends who were worried or lost. He was amazingly cool, like a friend and parent, simultaneously.

You never know.

chill out and
read "The Handsomest Man in Cuba" by Lynette Chiang.

Posted August 14th, 2007 - 3:57 am by from Portland, United States (Permalink)
I should also note that since the dawn of the age of the mobile phone and internet (heck, even phones), my hosts, friends and family are less and less apt to keep their appointments.

When I'm on the bus or train it seems that half of all the mobile users are having a conversation about how they're late or they're not going to make it.

Have you noticed that, too?

Posted August 14th, 2007 - 9:47 am from Berlin, Germany
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Posted July 27th, 2008 - 5:31 am by from Amsterdam, Netherlands (Permalink)
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Posted August 5th, 2008 - 7:26 am by from Seattle, United States (Permalink)
I just had 2 no-shows this week, and not only was I inconvenienced, but I had to turn down other would-be guests because I was expecting them.

My decision was to write them each one email, and if I haven't heard back in a couple of days, leave them "neutral" references in which I explained that regrettably they never showed up, nor did they respond to my messages.

I don't know about you, but if ever I were to get a "neutral" reference, it would hit me pretty hard. But not as hard as a "negative" reference, which just might prompt me to feel the need to respond somehow, explaining my side of the situation and thereby making a bit of drama.

So, I think that you're all right in your responses, but I do lean towards those who think you should leave a reference, within reason. A neutral one that indicates that the person was a no-show is fully justified, in my opinion.

Posted August 14th, 2008 - 10:45 pm by from Reston, United States (Permalink)
Don't be such a pussy, leave that person a negative review. People are so shy about leaving negative reviews, but its there to help other hosts from being screwed around. Leave the negative review and explain exactly what happened and how you were inconvenienced. If, for some reason, the would-be guest writes a letter and explains that they were stuck in an elevator for three days and uhhh, sorry, then you can change your rating. I wouldn't be as easy as Smiley, dancing around leaving "neutral" reviews, I think it would be a disservice to every other host if you didn't leave them a bad rating.

Posted March 28th, 2009 - 1:00 pm by from Brussels, Belgium (Permalink)
Yes, some (if not most) members can be afraid or want "to be nice": that's why the anonimous part is potentially so important.