Do you contact a no-show on a holiday weekend?

Hey there,
We had a well reviewed guest book this holiday weekend about 2 months ago. They were supposed to arrive yesterday but messaged after check-in (around 4pm) that something came up and they’d be arriving in the am. It’s nearly 4pm and no guests or message.

What would you do? Should I message and see if we should still expect them? It’s one of the busiest holiday weekends of the year and we have a strict cancellation policy… but if there’s any weirdness about them trying to get a refund I’d like to try to book the remaining days ASAP (although at this point it’s pretty last minute).

Thanks for your thoughts!

Hosting 101.



Never had a no show so haven’t had to think about it :woman_shrugging:t2: Since we do contactless check-ins with covid precautions it’s not a biggie if someone is later than expected

Alternate opinion here.

You contacted them once already. You’re not their mama. They knew you were strict cancellation. Keep their money with a clear conscience.


I take it the message thread is on the platform? If not, it IS worth it to memorialize it on there:

“When I contacted you, you indicated you would arrive [date]. I am confirming that your booking is still active.”

That way you can demonstrate they didn’t bring up any extenuating circumstances.


Yes, all communication has been on platform. But I think I’ll reach out in a few hours using your language to back myself up. Thank you!

I have a sweet friend who has a whole house Airbnb in Virginia wine country. She contacts me to compare notes, and begins, “Since I know you’re more hardass than me, what would you do if . . .”


Why mention cancellation? And why contact them?


I would do nothing. Either they arrive or not. Either way it’s their time and their dime.



Huh? Of course it is!

Like you said, not their mama


I didn’t read it that way. I read that the guest contacted the host and said they’d be arriving the next day.

I would contact them if you aren’t the one who contacted them the first time. I’m not sure why “mama” has anything to do with it. I think it’s a matter of simple human interaction that only takes a few seconds and I would be curious to know if they are coming or not. There are a lot of strangers that I care about and those paying to stay in my home are included in that number.

If I had a stand alone house across the way maybe I’d be more hands off but since my Airbnb is attached to my house it’s helpful to know these things.


(Update: they showed up! Right before I was going to follow up. But good to gage your thoughts for if this happens again so thank you!)


I would contact them, @HudsonNY . I always send a “hope everything is okay” type message to no-shows. Once it saved me a ton of grief.
That guest tried getting a refund a week after not showing and not communicating. CS saw my two messages – check-in-day and second-day – and because I had “reached out”, they said okay when I didn’t agree to the refund. They took down the guest’s ranty revenge review without me asking. (This was four or so years ago. Those were the days.)
If nothing else, it looks good to the system.


Glad it worked out for both you and guest!


It bears mentioning here that when someone books your location, it’s a 2-way commitment. You have agreed to reserve it for their exclusive use and they have agreed to pay you. No-shows are not entitled to a refund unless you grant it - presumably your guest has a story like Grandma died suddenly and your heart (and money) goes out to them. But no-shows get what they paid for because the location is reserved for their use irrespective of whether they use it.

My cancellation terms are: full refund if cancelled at least 5 days prior. That 1) entices them to book, knowing they can cancel “almost last minute” and 2) allows enough time for someone else to re-book it (with no cancellation option since it’s now less than 5 days prior). My deepest condolences that your Grandma died but no refund* for no-shows.

  • No-shows are always refunded Cleaning Fees

Living the life this week!
2 no shows, direct bookings, paid in full…. Talk about passive income!
The cleaning team is not impressed …. But - what can you do…,:grinning:


Not unless they ask… Nothing is automatic for a no show. I do not charge a cleaning fee so it’s a moot point for me. Its all wrapped in the nightly rate so they do pay:)


Right. No-show is not the same as a last-minute cancellation (i.e. the guest initiates a cancellation before check-in), which would automatically be refunded the cleaning fee.


A clear line of communication is always recommended especially when you can sense “weirdness” so you’ll be able to back up your case if you do cancel their booking or if they try and argue your decision to cancel. I see that this was a while ago so I hope everything turned out.

we are new but we debated contacting guests when check-in time past and no one arrived. This happened 2x - we send a check-in welcome packet with check-in info (wifi pass, door codes, ect) at check-in time. Then we follow-up the next day to ensure accommodations are up to expectations. Both messages let us prod guest for status without mentioning cancellation. We had guests show up @ 9:30pm - and messaging them would have seemed weird and motherly.

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