What does chum around mean?
A chum can be a friend, pal, buddy, mate, comrade, acquaintance or companion. It’s also one who shares interests or activities with another. When you chum around, you display good-natured friendliness as you accompany someone during a short activity or journey.
Is ChumAround a tour operator or travel agency?
ChumAround is not a tour operator nor is it a travel agency. ChumAround is a technology company. As our name suggests our role and responsibilities are strictly limited to facilitating the connections between the Local Hosts and Visitors in arranging their meeting.
What is a ChumAround host?
On ChumAround, a ‘host’ is a broad definition of a person who resides in a certain location and wishes to share his/her personal local experience with visitors he/she meets on ChumAround, so that they could become acquainted with each other and the area from the perspective of the local host.
Is being a host the same as being a tour guide?
No. Local hosts are not tour guides and Chumaround does not offer tour guide services or pre-packaged itineraries. Local hosts are people that simply hang out and have fun experiencing cities with like minded people they connect with on the ChumAround platform. They offer practical advice or share their personal experiences about ‘best bars and restaurants’, ‘non-touristic spots’, ‘shopping areas’ etc.
I don’t have any experience, can I be a host?
You don’t have to be an expert to chum around with visitors to your city. All you need is a vibrant personality, intimate knowledge of your city and a passion for meeting people and having fun.
Is there an age requirement in order to be a host?
Yes. You must be eighteen years of age or over to enter and register as a user on ChumAround. Children under eighteen years of age are prohibited from using our Site, Application and services.
Does it cost me anything to be a host on ChumAround?
No. Being a host and offering your services on ChumAround is 100% free. If you decide to receive pre-payments by connecting your Stripe account, there will be a 14.5% service fee. This contribution allows us to effectively and efficiently manage the community as well as provide you with online payments, marketing, and customer support. It’s a win-win situation because your contribution is made only after you get booked.
As a host, am I an official employee of ChumAround?
No. ChumAround is simply a platform that makes it easy for people to connect. As a host, you are an independent contractor working for yourself.
How much do I get paid to be a host and chum around with people?
You determine how much you want to make and can set your hourly rate accordingly. Remember that people visiting your city are more than happy to pay you for your companionship, insight and knowledge. It’s ok to set a high hourly rate, but make sure that your profile and booking page are written in a way that connects with people and encourages them to select you. For every hour you’re out exploring and having fun, you’ll be earning.
When do I get paid?
On ChumAround you have two options in which you can receive payment. You can have your guests pre-pay immediately for a planned chum around with you, or you can accept cash payments at the time of your meeting. The option to accept cash payments is automatically created when you create your host booking page. If you prefer to receive immediate pre-payment to guarantee a booking, you will need to connect Stripe to your listing. Stripe is a third party payment processor that will allow you to accept all major credit cards for your service. It’s quick, easy, and free to set up your Stripe account. Once your Stripe account is set up and connected, you can accept payments immediately when someone books hours to chum around with you.
Can you send payment directly to my bank account?
As a ChumAround host, you can accept cash payments at the time of your meeting or accept pre-payments when a guest books you. Pre-payments are processed via Stripe. If you accept pre-payments via Stripe, you can transfer any payments received directly from your Stripe account to any bank account you’ve connect to it.
How do I connect Stripe to my listing in order to be paid?
To connect Stripe, simply follow these instructions:
*It’s important to note that you can use one ChumAround account to create multiple listings if you want to be a host in more than one city. For each new listing that you create you MUST connect your Stripe account If you do not connect Stripe, you can accept cash payments at the time of your meeting.
- Select Become a Host and create your listing.
- Once you create your host page, click My Listings.
- Find your new listing and select the Manage icon for that listing.
- Click the Payment Settings tab.
- Connect Your Stripe account and Click Save.
Can I accept money directly from guests?
Yes. When you create a host listing on Chumaround, the default cash payment option allows you to accept cash payments for your host services at the time of your meeting.
Is the money i make as a host taxable?
As an independent contractor you are not employed by ChumAround and we are not required to report any income you’ve generated by using our platform. It is your responsibility to report earnings according to tax laws in your country. If you have more questions about how to file or that are specific to your tax situation, we suggest speaking with a tax professional.
Do i have a specific schedule that i need to follow in order to be a host?
You decide who you want to meet and when. You’re completely in charge of your schedule. Get to know interesting people from around the world!
What should i do when i chum around with guests?
You and your guest have the complete freedom to decide the activities you want to do. You can turn down any twisty street, or browse any fancy shop that catches your eye, giving you the option to make on-the-spot decisions and enjoy whatever comes your way.
Do you have any suggestions on how i can be most successful as a host?
It’s important to remember that people will book a chum around host because they want to do more and see more than landmarks and places they might read about in a travel guide. They want to see what’s happening ‘behind the scenes’; the hidden gems, local customs, rituals and etiquette. They can teach you basic conversation skills, give you transportation suggestions, safety tips, and more.
Can I choose the people I chum around with?
Absolutely. You are totally free to decide who you’ll chum around with. If someone request a chum around with you, you should review their profile and see if it’s someone you would be ok hanging out with.
How do I cancel a reservation?
Cancellations are inconvenient for guest that have made a confirmed booking, however we realize that emergencies do occur. If you need to cancel a confirmed booking, you should first attempt to reschedule your appointment with your guest. If you are unable to agree to a new schedule, then you must initiate the cancellation by sending a message to your guest via the ChumAround messaging system. You will also need to immediately initiate a full refund to your guest if any pre-payments have been made.
I’m very motivated. How can I host even more?
You can gain guest confidence and increase the number of reservations by: Making a complete and personable profile on the site; Receiving recommendations from people that know you; Uploading high quality photos; Responding as quickly as possible to reservation requests; Doing a great job and get positive ratings; Sharing your profile on social networks like Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Instagram.
I signed up as a host, but my host page isn’t visible in the search.
You should allow for an average of 30 minutes before your profile is visible on the search engine. It’s important to remember that for best results you should write yoru location in English using the format City/State -or- City/Country. For example:
What happens if a Guest cancels a reservation?
As per the ChumAround Terms of Service, a guest cancellation must occur 3 days (72 hours) before the scheduled appointment. The cancellation must be initiated via the ChumAround messaging system.
3 days before - If a guest cancels before the 72 hour cancellation deadline, you are required to refund 100% of your booking fee.
Within 3 days -If a guest cancellation request occurs anytime within 72 hours of their appointment, the payment is non refundable.
If a guest qualifies for a refund, you should initiate that refund within 3 business days (72 hours) after the cancellation occurs. If any problems should occur during this process, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
How does the payment process work?
There are 2 payment options available on Chumaround: (1) Payment in the local currency at the time you meet, and (2) Pre-payment for booking requests. By default, all hosts are allowed to accept cash payments at the time of their meeting. If you would like to be pre-paid for your agreed meeting, you can set up your listing to accept all major credit cards. These payments are processed via Stripe payment processing. Accepting pre-payments is a great option because you create a fully automated booking experience, so neither the Host nor the Guest needs to worry about the money when you meet. When making a booking request, the Guest enters his or her payment information, after which the amount due for the booking is charged. Payment will be sent immediately to your Stripe account less a 14.5% service fee.
Can I accept tips?
Yes you can. Tipping is never mandatory, but if you provided an amazing experience for your guest and he/she wants to show you their gratitude by offering you a tip, then we encourage it.
Do i need to pay for my own food and transportation when I host?
Extra expenses such as transportation, entrance fees, or any third party services you decide to acquire have to be paid by you and are not included in your hourly rate. We recommend that as you discuss and plan to chum around with your guest, you consider these extra expenses. It’s ok to ask your guest if they are willing to pay for any additional expenses that might occur, but that conversation should occur before you schedule your appointment so that your interactions don’t become awkward.
Why do you use Stripe to process online payments?
We’ve selected Stripe as our payment processors because: It aligns with our goal of providing a secure, and easy to use experience for users of the ChumAround platform; They provide superior customer service; They have an incredible 250 million worldwide users, and; They allow ChumAround members to pay or get paid in over 203 countries and markets and in 26 currencies. With Stripe we know our customers will have peace of mind when booking you on the ChumAround platform.