Did I overreact to this situation?

I previously made a thread about a guest who arrived 4 hours ahead of check-in to “drop off bags” but then made herself at home…as opposed to actually just dropping off luggage and then returning at the appropriate time.

That instance made me change my policy to allow less flexibility for that. Well, today I had the opposite problem from a guest who needed to leave bags here, and then return past check-out time for them (as opposed to dropping off early, ahead of check-in time). I should have said no but didn’t because I felt backed in a corner. He had a job interview and he really couldn’t bring the bags with him to that, and he told me he would pick them up at noon. Check-out time is a 11 AM.

Noon came and went and he didn’t show to pick them up. I couldn’t be stuck waiting until who knows when, so I left to run and errand and put the key in the lock box for him to retrieve bags and texted him to give him a heads up. I came back and he wasn’t here so I went upstairs to take a nap, figuring since he had access I didn’t need to be available. I heard him come in a little after 1 PM.

Well…what a mistake that was…I woke up at 3 PM and heard him talking on the phone downstairs, still in my house.

I ended up texting him and told him in no uncertain terms that he needed to leave immediately or I would be calling the police. I stated in the text that picking up bags meant only that, not coming in and hanging around for hours after check-out time.

He left, then texted me and said he was very sorry and was waiting on a friend to pick him up. I left him a review that told this story so that other hosts have a warning. I will also explain what happened in a public response if he leaves me a bad review over this. I felt like he was disrespectful of me and my property by doing what he did, even if he didn’t ultimately cause any harm.

Was telling him I’d call the police overreacting? He did not communicate to me that he needed a place to wait for another 2 hours.

I also will not make any exceptions ever again to the luggage storage policy. Guests will have to pay for extra nights if their luggage needs extra time here (so book the night before if they have to drop it off before 3 PM or book the night following if it has to stay past 11 AM + any wait times for rides, etc).

I am glad I don’t have any upcoming bookings for over a week because I blocked off Thanksgiving week. I am so wound up over this right now. Ugh.

You did not over-react by telling him you’d call the cops.

You under-reacted by letting him keep his bags there. He certainly could have taken bags to an interview – he either had a car, his friend had a car, or he took a cab. I once had a similar situation and left my bag at the company’s main desk, while I had my interview.

BE FIRM! Guests will not appreciate you caving in to requests.

When you came back and took a nap (mistake) you should have placed his bags on the front step and locked your door


Yeah he took a cab - didn’t have a car here.

I did consider putting his stuff outside. I don’t have a porch though, just a stoop, and it was a bit messy out there due to snow and ice this weekend.

I am going to make sure this does not happen again. I am saying no to all luggage requests unless they pay for that time. Period.

I think that you have every right to be upset, but I personally would have gone down (or up) and said - buddy, clear out. A text is a bit too mild, and the threat of police is a bit too much, in my opinion. You allowed him to pick up the bags, he took your generosity and shat on it by making himself cozy in your place. But you should have just walked up to him and let him know that picking up bags didn’t include hanging out inside.

As I’ve written here before, I like to take the stern but fair nanny approach. I want the guest to feel welcome and want to return, but I also want them to tow my line.

Good luck to you.


Maybe a little, but I’d have been pissed too.

You could have saved yourself so much grief by taking a hard line on leaving luggage in the first place. Just don’t let them do it. It ties you down and can lead to problems like this.

When it is time for them to leave, they need to leave. Be firm about it and you won’t get them taking advantage in the future.


Thank you. I am doing a hard line stance on it from now on. I even drafted an AirBNB canned response that I saved in case anyone else asks. Never again.

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You’re right to be upset. This man completely took advantage of your hospitality and the fact you were asleep. That’s a huge betrayal of trust, which is something we rely on when we open our homes to strangers.

I wouldn’t worry if you were overreacting or not. Yes you could have approached it slightly differently but in my opinion you were totally justified. Don’t worry about it, it’s done now anyway

Sigh. There’s no need to take a hard line just because. It can be very helpful to travellers to let them keep their bags there; I always let guests leave bags at both check out and check in time.

When they check in, I ask if they need the loo, take their bags and explain I will give them keys and do the check in when the allotted time comes. Then I wave them goodbye and get on with my day.

When they check out I let guests keep a set of keys to come back and get their bags; usually I have another guest checking in so I explain clearly that the room is no longer theirs. They usually leave their bags in the hallway.

Sometimes they come back a bit later than agreed but it’s no skin off my nose as they can let themselves in. Guests usually come back, use the loo, refresh their water bottles then leave. I’ve never had any issues and they very much appreciate the flexibility.


Well, my philosophy is that when WE hosts make a ‘mistake’ even yes when trying to be kind, such as allowing them to leave their luggage because you can now see what a mess it could lead to, it is best is to deal with it ~amicably~, but never forget and not make that same mistake again. Confrontations do no do anyone any good; not to the host, the guest or Airbnb. I know some can’t be avoided, but some need not have to happen in the first place, especially when it is a one-time event and over a forgivable matter…

Many, many of my guests do stupid and inconsiderate things. I learn from it and try to ~remove~ the possibility of happening again. Even the nicest people can be a bit thoughtless and inconsiderate at times. Unless they are of ill-will, I let it go. As a direct result, all my guests walk away happy and I carry no anger (or guilt) and above all it helps me remain enthusiastic toward my next guest, which is very important in this business.

So now you know @southernbuckeye - No Leaving Luggage. :wink:


I’m all in favor of being flexible, but it can be a problem if they intersect with another guest, which can certainly happen. And, for example, it can also be a problem if they use the guest bathroom if it has already been cleaned for the next guest.

I think that falls under no longer having access to the guest area which I covered in my original response.

They have also intersected with each other on a few occasions; it’s never been an issue but then I’ve always been very clear I’m holding their bags, not continuing to host them. Guests have usually chatted with each other briefly and then gone on their way. All supervised by me obviously but it’s encouraged a friendly and slightly less formal atmosphere from the beginning. And I find that guests who feel relaxed and able to talk to me give good reviews.

I have one bathroom and it’s used constantly throughout the day. I also have 98% 5 stars for cleanliness so my flexibility in this area has clearly never caused me a problem.

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I wouldn’t have reacted like you did.

I would have gone down and had a chat with him to see how the interview went, query why he hasn’t left yet and see if I could get him to leave. Just because his communication is poor doesn’t mean my communication has to be.


Nope I don’t think you overreacted at all. This dude put himself in a position to have this sort of thing happen. And also if he did this at a hotel he’d have had the manager knocking on his door and if he didn’t get the hell out they would indeed call the cops. Dude took advantage of the situation because he figured he could.

Yes, the manager would have approached him. The manager would have ascertained what was going on and if necessary either call the police or charged the guest extra for the extra time spent or another way to resolve the issue.

The hotel would have also held bags and the guest could have hung out in the hotel lobby or the hotel bar.

They would not have sent a text saying to get out or they’d call the cops.


That may be true but they don’t live in the place where the guest is staying.

Bottom line is to each his own. If this host felt that she needed to talk about calling the cops then there is a reason for that. My read on the situation is that this dude acted shady when he was there a few hours after check out time because he obviously assumed that the host wasn’t there to make sure that he left. Then the host wakes up from her nap and guess who’s still there? The person who was supposed to be gone quite a while ago. Who is no longer welcome at the house which is a private residence not any kind of public space. Not everyone would talk about calling the police but if this host talked about that then clearly she felt she had a reason to. People don’t throw those words around without reason. But that’s just my opinion.


One of my house rules is “we will not be able to hold luggage for you for liability reasons”.

Had an experience years ago where I was “holding” a bag for someone until about 6pm. They, of course, decided they wanted to pick it up at lunchtime. What a massive pain that was… once burnt, never again!


Erm, you’re the one comparing the experience to a hotel.

Was there something about him as a person you found threatening? If not, then saying you’d call the police was an overreaction, in my view. I would have messaged him over the Airbnb system to have a record of it, and I would have said that I thought he was just going to pick up his bags and go. I’d ask him what was going on and if he needed any help. That shows you’re aware of his being there and that it was not what you agreed to. I wouldn’t resort to talking about calling the police unless there was some danger involved.

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He was not behaving in a threatening manner, but he was trespassing on my property, because all he had permission to do was come in, grab the bag and leave.

Instead he stayed because he thought I wasn’t going to be home to make him leave. He could have called, texted, or messaged through the Air platform to ask “Hey, my friend is picking me up but can’t be here for a couple hours. Is it OK with you if I wait in the kitchen area?”

Instead he just went ahead and did it - I assume one of those “easier to ask forgiveness than permission” type people.

There was no respect for me, my property, or my flexibility whatsoever. So, I texted and said to leave immediately or I will call the police. You get what you give in the way of respect.


Has he left a review yet? Wasn’t this the doctor interviewing for a position? I inevitably find doctors and residents to be super air headed.

I also recently had a couple who lingered well after check out. I don’t think they realized I was upstairs. When they sent a text to say thank you, I told them I’d say goodbye in person. I think they were surprised I was upstairs. I just don’t know how someone can blatantly see that your check out is 11am and they linger until almost 12. I was pissed but didn’t show it as they were on their way out.