Is BeWelcome safe?
We are sometimes asked questions like: ‘How can I be sure that BeWelcome members are trustworthy?’ ‘What information will I have about my potential hosts or guests?’ ‘What is my protection against criminals coming to visit me?’
Any activity, including travel, carries some risk, but remember that you always have a choice about whether to accept a host or guest. BeWelcome offers several features to help you make informed decisions about who you think is trustworthy.
Some detailed arrangements may be easier through phone etc., but it is important to keep at least the initial messages and requests via the site. In that way, they are recorded on BeWelcome. This makes unsafe activities more difficult.
The member’s profile is the first place to find information about that person on BeWelcome. Essentially, it is a self-presentation and you should always keep this in mind. However, a profile can give you an impression of that person, how they present to others, and what their interests, preferences and quirks are.
A profile may also include comments from other members. These comments will tell you what experiences other members had with this person. However, when reading comments, please bear in mind that, for various reasons, many find it more difficult to write honest comments about a not-so-good experience than to write flattering comments about a good experience. Comments may therefore not always tell the whole story, or may never be written at all.
BeWelcome also has a Safety Team, that can investigate complaints, warn, and if necessary ban members with unsafe behaviour.
Please always remember that your safety relies on your own judgment and decisions. BeWelcome is there to help you make informed decisions about hosting/staying with other members and to support you in critical situations. While we do what we can to help you, we cannot take any responsibility for your personal actions and the final decision and responsibility for your safety is yours. If you are nervous about hosting or meeting someone, don't do it. Always use common sense in protecting yourself and your property.
Each member contributes to keeping our community as safe as possible by reporting abuse quickly in order to prevent it from spreading. If you become aware of a member abusing the services or displaying misconduct, please inform BeWelcome through the contact us form or by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org and write a comment as appropriate to warn others who interact with that person.
For more information, please visit our Safety pages.
What are profile ‘comments’?
‘Comments’ are feedback given about you and by you about other members. They may be given after a hosting experience, but they do not have to be linked to a specific event, and they can be given at any time. Comments written by others cannot be changed by you. (If you object to a particular comment, please use the flag icon in the comment to report it to the Safety Team, who will consider whether it should be changed.)
Before writing a comment about another member, please read our Profile Comment Guidelines.
Spam and abuse
I have an idea or suggestion to improve BeWelcome. How can I share it with you?
The best way is to create a topic in the Feature requests group, in order to submit your idea to the community and get reactions from other people. If the idea is widely supported, it may become reality in a future site update. However, please be aware that we can’t always implement all suggestions, even when we wish to, because of limited development resources.
Alternatively, you can contact our Support Team to share your idea.
<p>How can I change which notifications I receive from BeWelcome?</p>
For newsletters and notifications from local events, you can set your notification parameters on the "My preferences" page, "website" tab.
For subscriptions to groups or forum threads, you can change your settings on the "Subscriptions" page (accessible from the Discussions page).
Notifications for incoming personal messages and hosting requests are always active. There is no option to turn them off, as we consider it an essential part of using BeWelcome. If you don't wish to receive such messages, please consider changing your status to "not hosting" or temporarily deactivating your profile.
Notifications will always be sent to your email address, we presently don't have app notifications. If you don't receive mail notifications, it may be because there is a problem with your email provider sorting out our mails as spam. You can try adding bewelcome.org to the list of authorized domains in your anti-spam parameters, or contact your email provider.