Has anyone ever run across this kind of request?
Potential guest: Hello. I am an international student from blah blah staying in the USA and want to come to LA with my friend. It would be inappropriate for us to sleep in the same bed, so would it be okay if one of us stayed on the sofa in the living room?
Me: No, we do not allow this. It would be better for you to find accommodations better suited for you. best of luck with your travels. [Then I hit the DECLINE button.]
Uh…yeah. That’s like asking a hotel if it would be okay for someone to sleep in the lobby because it would be ‘inappropriate’ for you to share a room and you don’t want to pay for another room. Huh?
People never cease to amaze me.
Yes, I have had a similar request. It was a man and a woman who were friends. They didn’t want to sleep in the same room. They asked if one of the beds could be put in the living room. We said fine.
Yes, I’ve had this too several times. I’ve not had a problem with it but I’ve told the guests that I do not supply any extra bedding for the sofa and suggested that they bring a sleeping bag.
“It would be inappropriate for us to sleep in the same bed”
OMG Maybe they can look for a place with two beds. Or a place with two rooms. Or just stay in two BnB’s. Crazy people, good that you declined.
@EllenN I love the fact that you show great flexibility towards your guests. I also consider myself a flexible host. But didn’t you for one moment hesitate giving in to that request? What was your reasoning behind it? I would really feel that this would be pushing it a little bit, not to say that I would feel awkward about people that can’t sleep in two beds in one room.
Agree completely. The fact that she considers it ‘inappropriate’ to sleep wth her traveling companion already makes her strange (or at least someone I probably wouldn’t click very well with, and we all know this business is all about clicking). So, that’s strike one.
Wanting to take over my house for the price of a room? Strike two.
The mere thought of wandering downstairs on Sunday morning, concerning myself with tip-toeing around, not wanting to run the coffee grinder out of fear of waking up the person snoring away on my sofa because his traveling companion was too cheap to pay for accommodations that were more ‘appropriate’? Strike three.
Yeah, I’ve had several groups lately with 3 same sex friends stay in my 1 bedroom futon place. Thankfully they knew what they were getting into and flexible in these cases and ok with sharing a bed. But I had this band once staying the night while traveling on tour and there were 4 and none of them wanted to share a bed, wanted air mattresses set up, smoked in my bathroom, etc. I was a new host, I should have declined.
If you don’t want to sleep in the same bed, don’t book a place that has one bed. Stupid cheapskates.
No, I didn’t hesitate at all. I didn’t consider it a strange request, so there was no reasoning behind complying with it. Until reading this string on this forum it would never have occurred to me to view it as a strange request. The requests I’ve had that I thought were strange and irritating were people who wanted me to buy a queen size bed and store it so that guests could have choices about bed size and the guests who wanted us to move the bed away from the window because they were cold despite the fact that we provide a space heater and we’re in Los Angeles, CA. The funny thing was that my husband assumed that it was the woman who wanted separate sleeping quarters. Upon talking with the man, I learned that he was raised Mennonite so I think it was he who wanted separate sleeping quarters.
Since we are a gay couple, I would really be hesitant to host people that are so blatantly conservative, that a man and woman can’t sleep in the same room, or that two same sex friends can’t sleep in one bed. I wouldn’t want people judging us in our own home.
I haven’t had this kind of request but it takes all kinds I guess. I would not want a stranger crashing on my couch for all the reasons you mention. I once had a couple, supposedly an adult father and an adult daughter who were in the small room with a full size (at that time) futon. The dad was quite tall and so I offered my couch but they declined. I was younger then, I’m so much older now. (Apologies to Bob Dylan for riffing on his lyrics.) I don’t really know if he slept in the bed or on the floor. I don’t care if they were father daughter or boyfriend/girlfriend or…as long as they are quiet and don’t damage my stuff.
Amen to that. I think her use of the term ‘inappropriate’ was the first red flag for me. It was almost as though our room didn’t align with her value system. And, we are a gay couple too, and so kind of sensitive to any signs that we may be hosting someone who will be judging us in our own home. Nope. No amount of money is worth that.
They didn’t judge us or anyone else. Our listing has said that we are LGBT friendly from day one and they chose to stay here. It’s just as judgemental to not host conservatives as to not host liberals or any other group. When I say everyone is welcome I mean it. Many people have practices that they don’t judge others for not sharing. For example, I don’t eat meat. I don’t judge people who do.
I agree to that.
But I also think that it’s fair to not accept people that you’re pretty sure wouldn’t be a good fit if their communication makes it clear. It’s not that they’re gay or christian or whatever. It’s the way they communicate to you with what they’re expecting vs. what you provide.
As far as asking you to bend over backwards for their needs: People should be able to read listings and find a place suitable for them. It doesn’t matter if there’s two travelers, if you don’t want to share a bed, find a place with 2 beds. Don’t contact people with a private room and a large bed and ask them to provide more than they offer because you’re cheap. I guess it doesn’t hurt to ask, but there are so many places out there that have enough beds for the people in your group. Look for a hotel if you want one room with 2 beds. If it’s against your beliefs to share a room or a bed with a person, then find a place that works for your needs, don’t ask people to do it for you. There’s a severe lack of personal responsibility these days.
I agree that it’s fine to decline guests who want to sleep in you living room if people sleeping in your living room makes you uncomfortable. What I don’t think is fair is to judge and/or ridicule them.
I have a difficult time understanding why people on this forum are judgemental of others’ sleeping habits. We’ve had discussions about allowing children to sleep with their parents, whether conservatives should have to host gay couples and now about people who prefer to sleep apart. If the configuration of your listing doesn’t accommodate guests’ needs can’t hosts just decline without judging? For the record, we had a male/female long time married couple who didn’t like to sleep in the same room.
Oh I totally agree. I just think it’s on the guests to find a place that fits their needs, not asking hosts to accommodate specific needs that could be easily be met elsewhere (and usually for more money…). And this is a safe place to vent. And especially when it’s in your own home/space, there is an extra level of comfortability with the guests that needs to be met as well as making sure the guest has a met comfort level or it will result in a bad review. Power to you people that are open to whatever in your personal space, but certain people (like me with children or a single women for example) have certain safety or noise aspects if we list in our own homes that at least Air seems to account for. There’s a difference between home-sharing and a commercial bed and breakfast, and I think Chesky has forgotten that. But I also think it’s ridiculous that people who aren’t sharing their homes would discriminate against people who have a different belief system or lifestyle than them.
I have come across this in a few different ways.
- a request - Nearly identical to yours. I say that I do not permit sleeping in the common areas, as you have also stated. I do have a very nice air mattress (I am an AirBnB host after all…) that I supply for situations like this. Many guests have accepted the air mattress and none have complained.
- a request the day of arrival in person - Not the situation I like to be in where people show up with an extra one or two more. I have been hosting a long time, so I offer the air mattress as before but I also mention that I have an extra charge for additional people. This charge is stated on my listing already. I’m not trying to game people as they potentially may be gaming me.
- I find someone crashed on my couch when I get up in the morning - This is completely unacceptable. In this case I submitted a change request for the extra person to charge the guest. They weren’t super pleased, but they knew they were in the wrong to bring a rando to sleep on my couch. They didnt give me a bad review thank goodness.
I have many single female friends who use the “reasoning” that as a woman alone they need to take extra safety precautions many of which are thinly disguised profiling. I decided to check if they are correct that females are more likely to be victims of crime by a stranger. They are not. Men are appreciably more likely to be be victims of crime by strangers. Crimes against children are almost always committed by someone the child knows well.
Statistics are one thing, but people also deserve to be comfortable in their own homes.
One of our first AirBNB guests were an older married couple from Queensland. They were in Perth for the birth of their first grandchild. They lady asked if she could sleep on the couch (which click-clacked into a small bed) because her husband was the bionic man with replaced, knees, hips, etc. and it would be more comfortable for them.
We were happy to accommodate. They were lovely. I secretly thought that perhaps one of them was a snorer. I also don’t think it was based on price due to their needs - but rather our location was ideal for them and there wasn’t many options for their needs.
However, I would be hesitate if someone messaged me and used the wording in the original post. Perhaps the guest’s first language isn’t English or perhaps they are slightly judgmental. I think you should always go with your gut on whether a guest will be the right fit.
Just to have things clear: I said I would be hesitant. We are on instant book, and we never know what we are really going to get.
We are not talking about different political views here. It’s about having people in your home, your “private space”, your safe cocoon. And to me being a gay couple does add an extra layer of complexity to this. I don’t know what other LGBT-couples think about this? Maybe it’s worth an extra topic or maybe there already is an extra topic on this.
First of all, although we live in a relatively open minded city and neighborhood, we are still living in a relative conservative country and continent. This means that for professional reasons, my hubby can’t shout out to the world that we are a couple. For that reason in our listings we don’t explicitly tell that we are a couple. But of course people can always “suppose”. Although to the most ‘conservative’ people it might not even cross there mind.
Anyway, each time we have a guest, it’s deciding to come out, to leave it totally in the middle or to put up a charade. This is not ideal, but it is what it is, for the moment being we have to accept it as it is.
Why is this always a dilemma? There still is a fair deal of blatant and latent homophobia in the world. Depending on the degree of homophobia the consequences could go from an undeserved low star rating to (let’s put it extremely extreme) homicide: Putting us out of business to putting us out of life.
So I don’t think it’s fair to go calling me judgmental (If that was your intention). I would like to be able to welcome everyone in my home, regardless of who and what they are, but very unfortunately the world is what it is, and my bottomline will always be that their freedom ends where my freedom starts. And my freedom is to live a happy tranquil live with the man I deeply love.
You are totally right that e.a. females are much more likely to be raped by someone they know than by a stranger. The statistics show this, yes! But I have two questions about these statistics (which I really don’t know the answer to):
- Is a host you have known for 2 days considered a stranger in these statistics?
- Are these statistics not influenced by the fact that females, being smart and having good instincts, do thoroughly profile strangers, but let their guard down with people who have worked their way into their circle of trust?
In the end most of us do some sort of profiling. I think it’s a human thing, that we got from evolution. If profiling is still justified in the year 2017 and still useful that is totally up for discussion. And one could discuss “against” for several reasons and one could discuss “for” for as many reasons.
I wouldn’t be much annoyed by these requests IF they didn’t bring consequences for your -however small they might be-.
If you turn down too many requests indeed your listing might be pushed down, and I doubt that takes into account the fact that some of those requests were ludicrious to start with.