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I'm an innkeeper, owning and operating a B&B in Julian, California. I read about geocaching on Wikipedia, and was fascinated by it so much, I went out and bought a GPS unit. I've spent my little amounts of free time, over the last month, tracking down all the caches in my area, 15 so far. I want to create my own caches, including one that will be out in front of my B&B. I'd call it the "Mountain High Cache" after my B&B. I'd stock it with good SWAG, including business cards good for a discount at my B&B. Is this inappropriate?

 

On this same topic, is it inappropriate to leave business cards in caches that are good for a discount at my B&B?

 

I thank you for your feedback, both positive and negative. I will abide by the consensus and Groundspeak in the decision.

 

Scott

Edited by starcrwzr
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Commercial Caches / Caches that Solicit

 

Commercial caches attempt to use the Geocaching.com web site cache reporting tool directly or indirectly (intentionally or non-intentionally) to solicit customers through a Geocaching.com listing. These are NOT permitted. Examples include for-profit locations that require an entrance fee, or locations that sell products or services.

 

Solicitations are also off-limits. For example, caches perceived to be posted for religious, political, charitable or social agendas are not permitted. Geocaching is supposed to be a light, fun activity, not a platform for an agenda.

 

Some exceptions can be made. In these rare situations, permission can be given by the Geocaching.com web site. However, permission should be asked first before posting. If you are in doubt, ask first.

Taken from <a href="http://www.geocaching.com/about/guidelines.aspx">Geocaching guidelines

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I think it's a great idea, as long as the cache is available 24 hours a day, and you don't HAVE to buy anything in order to find or log the cache, or go inside the business to find it....

 

Putting discount cards or coupons in caches has been going on for a long time since the beginning of this game. Just the other day I got a free combo meal at Chik-Fil-A, thanks to a 'free meal coupon' that was a FF prize in a cache.

 

I say go for it! :)

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A cache at your B&B would probably be okay... Note, I said PROBABLY. Ask GC first.. Although it does sound a bit commercial. If you are allowed to hide such a cache, you might want to keep in mind the nature of your visitors - both for business and pleasure - and mark the cache page and keep the cache away from the building if possible. Just an observation from personal experiences.

 

As for leaving stuff in caches, I've found coupons and stuff before, but usually ripped, torn, expired, wet, etc, and in all cases ended up trashed out.

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I think it's a great idea, as long as the cache is available 24 hours a day, and you don't HAVE to buy anything in order to find or log the cache, or go inside the business to find it....

 

Putting discount cards or coupons in caches has been going on for a long time since the beginning of this game. Just the other day I got a free combo meal at Chik-Fil-A, thanks to a 'free meal coupon' that was a FF prize in a cache.

 

I say go for it! :)

 

So do I.

 

I don't think you are going to get much return advertising your location by giving info to people who are already there.

 

But I definitely like businesses that support caches.

 

 

Edit: stinking quote options

Edited by BlueDeuce
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A cache at your B&B would probably be okay... Note, I said PROBABLY. Ask GC first.. Although it does sound a bit commercial. If you are allowed to hide such a cache, you might want to keep in mind the nature of your visitors - both for business and pleasure - and mark the cache page and keep the cache away from the building if possible. Just an observation from personal experiences.

 

As for leaving stuff in caches, I've found coupons and stuff before, but usually ripped, torn, expired, wet, etc, and in all cases ended up trashed out.

 

I've asked GC, but haven't gotten a reply yet. I know, from reading the rules, that a cache can't be commercial in nature, but when I read about a cache that's located at the Geocaching shipping warehouse, I thought, "if they can have a cache on their property, why can't I?" (http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_details.aspx?guid=06cdc5d9-ca59-435a-b2cb-0a2727f38fd5).

 

The cache would be just over the fence on the easement for the public road that passes out front, a good 200' from the closest structure. It would be available 24/7 and would be a "1" hide in the bushes next to the fence.

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I thought, "if they can have a cache on their property, why can't I?" (http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_details.aspx?guid=06cdc5d9-ca59-435a-b2cb-0a2727f38fd5).

 

Because its their website and they make the rules. :)

 

Off hand I'd have to say that your cache would probably be a no go. A cache named Mountain High, fine. A cache stocked with good swag including discounts for your B&B, probably fine. A cache in front of your business, fine.

 

But a cache in front of your business, named after it and stocked with discount coupons for it seems to me like it would be a violation of the commercial cache guideline.

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I've asked GC, but haven't gotten a reply yet. I know, from reading the rules, that a cache can't be commercial in nature, but when I read about a cache that's located at the Geocaching shipping warehouse, I thought, "if they can have a cache on their property, why can't I?" (http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_details.aspx?guid=06cdc5d9-ca59-435a-b2cb-0a2727f38fd5).

  1. It's good to be king.
  2. That cache was placed over 3yrs ago. The guidelines have changed since then, but old caches are grandfathered.
  3. It's REALLY good to be king.

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I think it's a great idea, as long as the cache is available 24 hours a day, and you don't HAVE to buy anything in order to find or log the cache, or go inside the business to find it....

 

Putting discount cards or coupons in caches has been going on for a long time since the beginning of this game. Just the other day I got a free combo meal at Chik-Fil-A, thanks to a 'free meal coupon' that was a FF prize in a cache.

 

I say go for it! B)

 

I agree..as long as your description doesn't sound like you are promoting your business. If you don't mention your B&B, and if there is no requirement or connection to the B&B as part of doing the cache, I would think it would probably get approved. I like the idea of discount coupons in caches...I have found a few and left a few...I don't see them as any different than phone cards...and we've been leaving them in caches since I first started.

 

Hank

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I think it sounds fine, it looks like your intentions are out in the open. I can't say the same for the series The Word.

 

I don't think they really enforce the rule.

 

Solicitations are also off-limits. For example, caches perceived to be posted for religious, political, charitable or social agendas are not permitted. Geocaching is supposed to be a light, fun activity, not a platform for an agenda.

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I think it sounds fine too.

 

However, I think GC's rules for caches don't do much to curtail commercial exploitation of caches. They prohibit you from setting up a cache to promote religious or commercial interests, but if you look in almost any cache these days, you see a lot of advertising or religious propaganda. It's rampant. They can't control what people put in other peoples' caches, so lots of commercialism and religious promotion prevail.

 

Ironically, if you want to promote your B&B, it's better to put B&B-related swag in other peoples' caches. I'm not a big fan of that, but it seems to be all the rage, and you have companies like Jeep and Absolut and others creating their own TBs to push commercial efforts.

 

The way I figure it, in the future, there will be tons of geocache-specific advertising swag. It seems that every time some new communication medium is discovered by madison avenue, they turn it into a festering pile of commercialism. We're seeing this already, but the more popular geocaching becomes, the more likely you'll be opening an ammo can with corporate logos on everything. Maybe this will increase the quality of swag? Or maybe opening a cache will be like watching tv commercials? Ugh.

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I say go for it. Just don't expect to be earning bank off of the cache. :D

 

I have found many caches that are related to businesses and they are all fine and fun. I never feel pressured to buy anything, and that is what I want. I have even found caches inside of restuarants where the waiters know what I am looking for and just alugh at me as I 'try' to be sneaky. They are all good fun.

 

So bottom line, place the cache because it will demonstrate somehting to someone who didn't know abou ti before. But don't place it if you think you are going to earn a quick buck off of it.

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Fellow GC'rs,

Thanks for your input! My cache was approved! :) However, I took the easy way out and didn't mention my B&B in the description. I did say my home is named the same as the cache "Mountain High", which it is, but didn't mention that it is also a bed and breakfast. It will be obvious to the seekers of the cache because of our B&B sign at the entrance, and notice the coincidence. I guess that's as much free advertising as I can expect. Anyone that wants to stay at my B&B, while seeking caches in the Julian area, will get a discount if they tell me why they're there, or shows me there GPSr.

 

Again, thanks for all your input! :)

 

Starcrwzr

Mountain High B&B and Observatory

www.mountainhighbnb.com

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Fellow GC'rs,

Thanks for your input! My cache was approved! :) However, I took the easy way out and didn't mention my B&B in the description. I did say my home is named the same as the cache "Mountain High", which it is, but didn't mention that it is also a bed and breakfast. It will be obvious to the seekers of the cache because of our B&B sign at the entrance, and notice the coincidence. I guess that's as much free advertising as I can expect. Anyone that wants to stay at my B&B, while seeking caches in the Julian area, will get a discount if they tell me why they're there, or shows me there GPSr.

 

Again, thanks for all your input! :)

 

Starcrwzr

Mountain High B&B and Observatory

www.mountainhighbnb.com

 

You were lucky to get that one published with the pocket knife in the cache. The reviewer probably missed that because they are specifically prohibited and caches won't be published that list prohibited contents.

 

Nice swag though. I'm sure the locals will enjoy the cache.

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Coupons and discounts are neat to find but can be quite useless.

 

While visiting another city and picking up caches in the area I found a coupon for a free sub at a local sub shop. I took the coupon and thought that it would be nice to stop at the shop to get a sub for myself and rest of the family.

 

Now the coupon says good only at "x" location... Uhmmm not from around here where the heck is that at. Geeez wish store owners had their coordinates on the card. :)

 

Anyhow the coupon ended up in the trash later because we could not pin down where on "x" street that this sub places was at.

Edited by PCFrog
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Fellow GC'rs,

Thanks for your input! My cache was approved! :lol: However, I took the easy way out and didn't mention my B&B in the description. I did say my home is named the same as the cache "Mountain High", which it is, but didn't mention that it is also a bed and breakfast. It will be obvious to the seekers of the cache because of our B&B sign at the entrance, and notice the coincidence. I guess that's as much free advertising as I can expect. Anyone that wants to stay at my B&B, while seeking caches in the Julian area, will get a discount if they tell me why they're there, or shows me there GPSr.

 

Again, thanks for all your input! :)

 

Starcrwzr

Mountain High B&B and Observatory

www.mountainhighbnb.com

 

there's a B&B in Terlingua with a cache. I'm surprised no one else mentioned it.

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snip-

 

The way I figure it, in the future, there will be tons of geocache-specific advertising swag. It seems that every time some new communication medium is discovered by madison avenue, they turn it into a festering pile of commercialism. We're seeing this already, but the more popular geocaching becomes, the more likely you'll be opening an ammo can with corporate logos on everything. Maybe this will increase the quality of swag? Or maybe opening a cache will be like watching tv commercials? Ugh.

 

The next thing you're going to see is a commercial line of "genuine" ammo cans available for sale at your local wally world, Sears, or Home Despot. I figure Stanley, or Rubbermaid, or Craftsman will produce them, and people will look down on those old, green, 'Ammo' cans we use now.

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IT may be more to your advantage to put GPS coordinates on your business advertisement so people can locate you better when researching where to stay on their next vacation... With the push for a lot of GPS devices in cars it seems a natural... Also you (B&:unsure: webpage looks naked without coordinates....

 

(see other posts for ideas).

 

Dale

Edited by Dale_Lynn
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There are two kinds of caches I don't like to look for.

1 - a cache that is located close to a house (I found a cache that was located in front of a house in a short hedge. I rechecked the coords a number of times and still wouldn't have hopped out of the truck if I hadn't spotted the rubbermade container first.)

2 - a cache located out in front of a business - I don't like the feeling of being watched so when I am zeroing in on the cache, if I find it located right out in front of the big windows of a business I cease and desist all geocaching activity. If there is some structure there, IE a piece of artwork or large antique object that someone can pretend interest in while, I will do a quick look. Usually I will come back after the business is closed so I can cache in peace.

Exemptions to this are businesses that cater to tourists. Information buildings, US Forest Service office, gift stores, theme parks, quaint local attractions and maybe even a B&B.

I would just hope your hide is located in order not to scare away the ever elusive geocacher by allowing some nice cover and concealment for his geocaching enjoyment. :unsure:

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Leaving a few business cards or discount cards in the cache offering a discount at your B&B seems reasonable to me. It is merely a bonus for finding the cache. As long as you do not mention the discount or any other similar offer in your description, I think there should be no perception that this is a commercial attempt to solicit business.

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