MotoStays, the home-away-from-home accommodation service for motorcyclists, announced today that it’s ending business, effective immediately. In a FaceBook post, the owners wrote that “the costs and effort to run the site and grow the community were simply too great for us to continue.”
MotoStays was founded in 2014 by Seattle-based travellers Ted Haas and Gaila Gutierrez. They told CMG contributor Liz Jansen in 2015 that they’d been burned out on corporate life, so quit their jobs, rented their house and took off on their bikes. Their 14-month trip took them over 65,000 km through 10 countries, and taught them the value of friendship on the road. When they returned, they set up a free online service that would introduce travelling motorcyclists to other riders, who would pay it forward by offering accommodation and advice at no charge.
It was more than just a free bed. As Gaila said, “MotoStays creates a safety net of people who can help with language and local culture.”
However, they just couldn’t make it work. They wrote today on their FaceBook page:
It is with sadness our MotoStays Team is crafting this communication 2/25/19. Unfortunately, the time has come for us to shut down the MotoStays.com website and service.
You have all been a great and passionate community – thank you! Unfortunately, the business models we were trying to leverage for a sharing economy approach were not sustainable. The costs and effort to run the site and grow the community were simply too great for us to continue. Changing technology, various service threats and other factors have also influenced our decision and at some level forced this course of action.
Thank you all so very much for your early and continued support. There have been so many great traveler success stories and friendships made throughout the world over these last 4 years. It has been our privilege to serve as a tool and community for global and local motorcycle travelers alike.
May your future journeys find the most interesting roads, the kind hearts and warm smiles of fellow riders and travelers alike.
Tad, Gaila & Elliot
In the Comments to the post, MotoStays also answered some Frequently Asked Questions:
1. Will I be charged for any current or future MotoStays services?
No. We stopped charging for MotoStays membership well over one year ago. There will be no recurring or future charges.
2. Will I still be able to access the MotoStays.com website?
No. Unfortunately changes and updates in necessary security protocols and similar have made it impossible for us to leave running “as-is” any longer.
3. What services do you recommend I consider or try for future travels?
We have provided some ideas below and we have used all with success.
https://www.couchsurfing.com check out their specific motorcycle related groups
https://www.airbnb.com/ Reliable option for paid stays.
https://sharetraveler.com/ This is one of the most unique sites we have seen over the years and we appreciate the previous call outs for MotoStays. ShareTraveler is all about “exploring the world cheaply” and has been keeping a running log of home sharing and related offerings for quite some time now.
http://www.motorcycle-travel.net/ The closest thing to MotoStays, but not a large network.
4. Is there anything I need to do to protect my account and profile information?
Profile and account data is no longer available to you, other members or any public service. We are currently working on final database archives and data purging, but no action is required or available.
5. Is or would MotoStays consider service partnerships with other web properties or mobile services? Or is it for sale?
Potential yes to these, but that outcome is not expected. If interested, please contact us directly.
I don’t know why something like this, un-monetized, could not just be done as a forum or facebook page. You could include home exchanges and even bike exchanges.
There is a fairly extensive “tent space” forum on ADV Rider as you suggest.