Being a good Airbnb guest

A quick guide

Okay, so you didn't burn the apartment to the ground. I'm proud of you, that's a good start! But maybe you're wondering if you can go beyond that, and be an even better Airbnb guest? If so, this is where I share tips from my years of experience from both sides of the Airbnb game.

This guide is for private rooms or entire apartments. For shared rooms, please see the guide on being a good hostel guest.

Hit that "Send" button

A great guest is a communicative guest.
Airbnb continously encourages everyone to be communicative, and somehow it still flies miles over the heads of some people. Hosts and guests alike.

Most Airbnb hosts are normal people living everyday lives. To check you in to their place, they take time off work, schedule their daily chores accordingly and coordinate appointments. Here you can shine as a guest with a simple thing we call "communication".

Keep your host in the loop! It's a simple gesture, but it's definitely appreciated. Even if you're on time and everything runs smoothly, let your host know that too.

I always send two messages to my hosts. The first I send while I'm in transit, to let them know if the bus/train/flight is on time. The second message is sent when I arrive. Here I provide the time it will take me to get from the station/airport to the accommodation.

If you're late, let your host know as soon as possible, and provide them with a new estimated time of arrival. That might give them time to shop for groceries, pick up their kids or stay an extra hour at work.

Pro tip: Remember to save the phone number of your host. In case you don't have cellur data access in the country you're visiting, you can still contact them.

During the stay

Some hosts are spectacular. They have thought through every possible detail, they find the perfect balance between overshowering you with local tips and ignoring you. You sense they want you to have an amazing time in their city. These hosts deserve a little extra! It's absolutely not expected, but we're here to do next-level stuff, remember?

There's several things you can do. I like bringing back some beers or a snack'esque item.

When I was in Sønderborg in Southern Denmark, I brought back a cake and shared it with my host over coffee in the summer garden. We had a really great time, and it became a good memory.

Both as host and guest, I've shared a couple of beers with my living situation peers (yes, I'm proud of that rhyme). This is also a perfect time to start picking your host's brain for local tips and learn what their life is like.

It is the host's job to make you feel at home. But there's no law against returning the favor.

And about that kitchen...

A great guest is a communicative guest.
The kitchen is where most things go south. In fact, this is not only limited to Airbnb hosting, it seems almost like a global phenomenon that people just fail epicly to keep kitchens decent. I've seen the same thing in many, many offices. Even when there's signs saying "please put mugs in the dishwasher", some people go teenage rebel style and put their dirty mugs right next to the sign. C'mon, man.

All right, that was a bit of a side track. Anyways, the point was to put some elementary effort into the kitchen. Clean the pots, pans, plates and other kitchenware. There's bonus points for doing it right away ;-) Leaving it in the sink or on the table, leaves nothing but a bad impression.

If the kitchen is shared, you might also want to quickly run a cloth over the stove to clean spills and oil. Also remember to put your food back in the cabinets and/or fridge.

When you leave

A great guest is a communicative guest.
Do you know what melts the heart of an Airbnb host? When the room, kitchen and bathroom you rented out look exactly like the day you prepared it. That's sugar-coated candy deep-fried in awesome. Oh, man, the review you're going to get for that!

Leave things in a nice condition. Put pillows back in the bed/couch, swipe a cloth on the kitchen table, open a window for fresh air and fold the linnens. You get the idea. It takes what? 10 minutes? And it leaves a big impression on hosts. You can even do a quick vaccuuming, but it's not expected.

Don't leave wet and used towels on the floor. Hang them up for drying. A balcony is a great spot.

Also, don't trash your left-over food and drinks. Offer it to your host. Not only is it considerate of you, but it also helps to prevent food waste.

If your host has been particularly amazing, you can even leave a little, symbolic gift, like a box of chocolates.

In conclusion

I hope you found some useful information. As mentioned, and as you can probably see, I've been on either side of the game multiple times. I know what a host wants to see, and I bring that with me everytime I visit a new home.