Guest booked for 2 but checks in with 4 persons. I saw them on my IP camera. How to handle this?

Dear hosts,

I feel a bit deceived by this guest who booked for 2 persons and 4 showed up for check in. They self checked in and I saw them on my IP camera. For the record the camera is fully disclosed in my house rules. For me they can stay as long as they update the booking to reflect the correct number of guests and pay the extra frees. How should I proceed?

Send them a request for payment for the extra guests through the resolution center.

“Hi, Welcome! Glad you got checked in with ease. I noticed on the security camera that there are 4 guests in your party. This covers their fees. Hope you all have a great time. Let me know if you need anything!”


Same thing happened to me:

“Hi Chris,
Just checking in - I heard from my second floor tenant that your group had arrived. I just want to confirm the number of people in your party (he seemed to think it was more than two) and also offer to bring you additional towels; I think my cleaner only put enough out for two. Thanks!”

Like you, I had video evidence showing there were four people entering the apartment, but I didn’t want to say that was how I knew about the extra guests (no one wants to be spied on). I was very careful not to accuse him of sneaking people in, and after he admitted to having four people, I simply treated it as if he had made a mistake while booking. Had he not immediately copped to the extra guests and accepted my Resolution Center request for payment, I would have been on the phone to Air immediately to have the reservation canceled.


Did you do make the request under “trip related issues”? When I choose “Change dates or guests” I get a message saying " Please update your reservation with our Alterations Tool" but when I do an alteration it does not let me as the reservation has already started.

You can’t alter the number of guests after the booking has started @travellinbug

I believe you raise the request for the extra guests through the resolution centre.

You should also call Airbnb to change the booking to four guests and so if there is a record if the guest refuses to pay.

Do give them a deadline by when the payment needs to be made.


That’s because they USED to allow alterations after the reservation started. Sloppy coding, making the change without updating all the related systems. Now you have to call Air to get it changed on the reservation itself.

For that reason I started charging $50 for late notice of extra guests, rather than $30. It takes at least 30 minutes to go through the hassle of calling. I’m already in a sour mood if they brought extras, so the extra $20 at least buys a martini.


This happens all the time at my place. Just contact the guest and let them know that extra guests require them to be on the booking for insurance reasons and let them know about your extra guest fees. Then call Airbnb and ask them to make the alteration after the guest consents.

Here is an update:

I got in touch with Airbnb and they said that the way to go about this is to ask for the extra persons fee through the resolution centre. If the guest does not accept the amendment after some time Airbnb would get involved. This is how the rep explained it to me.

I was really anxious this week with this guest situation. Not because of the money but because I felt so cheated by the gust by sneaking in two extra guests and acting like he didn’t know it was not allowed. The guest was not responsive through the app and although he agreed to pay the difference for the unregistered guests it took him 2 days to get in touch about it. I admit this left a very bad feeling towards the guest as I kept wondering what could this cheeky guest be up to next? I admit I am quite a worrier :slight_smile:

Yesterday I got a phone call in the afternoon, it was my guest. He and his friends locked themselves out leaving the key inside. I jumped at the opportunity to visit the property to have a look. I told them to give me 45 minutes and I will be there. They are messy, their stuff was all over the place BUT other than that everything seamed to be in order!

This morning the guest tried to pay through the resolution centre but was getting an error. I contacted Airbnb and they agreed I could collect this in cash (I used Revolut). They phoned the guest to let him know as well and guess what! The guest payed up finally !! :smiley:
The rep told me to confirm in writing as soon as the guest makes the payment. The only strange thing about this is that Airbnb never amended the booking to show 4 persons are staying instead of 2.

Anyway tomorrow hopefully they guest and his friends will be checking out. Fingers crossed that all will be well. Just another day in the life of a host :slight_smile:

Thank you all for your feedback.


In the future when you send the resolution center request, detail in the memo box what it’s for.

Extra guest fees, $10 per day x 5 days x 2 guests:
Adult child 1
Adult child 2
Total = $100

This way you do have a record of the extra guests because as you have learned, you can’t alter the booking after check-in.

I detail it out like that when I do the pet fees. I am getting regular bookings with multiple dogs and expect that to continue because I’m specifically catering to 4-legged guests and their humans.


P.S. Glad it all worked out for you. You can breathe easy now.

What do you think about this review for these guests?

"F***** was a first time Airbnb guest.

My house rules state that unregistered guests are not allowed. The guest booked my apartment for 2 guests however when he self-checked-in I noticed that there were 4 guests in total. When I messaged the guest about this he said he was not aware that he could not bring extra guests with him. I don’t think the guest was aware of my house rules. The guest agreed to amend the booking and pay the extra guest fees.

Communication with the guest through the Airbnb message system was a problem for some reason I wasn’t getting any replies. However communication via SMS was not a problem.

Other than these issues, F***** was a good guest. He checked in and checked out on time. He and his friends where independent and left my apartment in good condition."

Allowing them to stay only compounds the problems for the next host…!


I think it is a mistake to ask for money before the review is written. I would just keep my mouth shut, send the guest a text on check out day something like this: Thanks for staying we strive to offer you a five star stay! I will review you this afternoon, please take a moment and review me as well. Then I would leave an honest review and the moment they review me I would then put in the request for money. Putting in a request for money for an extra guest prior to the review is likely to end up badly for the host.


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I am not sure I agree. I think it is always better to ask guests for money while they are in residence as they have an incentive to pay as they know you can kick them out if they don’t.

I am not in the camp of hosts who won’t ask for money owing due to guests breaking house rules or causing damage for fear of a bad review. @RiverRock

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A bad review is not worth the $30 extra person fee to many hosts. I really do not care if they pay it or not, Air will probably step in and pay it if the guests refuse.

People can be really vindictive, I am not going to set myself up to get a bad review for a few bucks that if I am persistent I can get Air to pay.


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Hi @RiverRock… I have a very large home, (5000 s/f, 7 bedrooms, etc.) so extra guests “stopping by” and/or staying is a massive problem for us. It’s also against the law in our city.
Of course, we have the “No unregistered, unpaid for guests” all over our listing, on our acceptance form, etc…but that still does stop people from trying to cheat under the guise of “Oh, I didn’t know.”
Some guests will admit they have extra guests.

You only have 2 weeks (or when the next guest checks in, in our case, that’s usually just a few days at best,) to make a Resolution request for extra guest fees but the now irate guest has a solid 2 weeks to write you a bad review.
This is our #1 issue with Airbnb… guests really hold the power because of bad review power they have. Personally, I don’t think anyone should be allowed to write a review if Airbnb has to get involved because the review is never going to be good. But Airbnb is truly pro guest, so that is never going to happen.

My guestion is this…
If you say you’ll rely on Aribnb to pay if the guests won’t because you don’t want a bad review, how do your guests not get mad when Airbnb gets involved and not write you a bad review?

Please advise on how you handle this issue.

Wow. @jaquo Just gave some brilliant advice on this issue in another thread. I don’t know how to link to it, sorry. But the gist is that it might be best to just charge enough to cover your guest maximum so you don’t have the hassle of ‘extra guests’.

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True POSSIBILITY but they can review DEFINITELY and it will be less than it could have been PROBABLY. I’m no longer taking those chances and getting fewer bad reviews as a result. Although, I am also getting less support from airbnb when I request it after the fact now too… so maybe you could be right.

This is NOT true. It is for damage claims.

Great idea!

Because we wait until after they either reviewed already or the 14 day window is closed. That was RR’s point about waiting to request.

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MIGHT is the key word. That is NOT the case for me and my listings. Take my whole house listing with max 12. I charge base $60 ($50 cleaning) and $20/ extra person over 1. That would be $280 for the 12 people. No way one person is going to pay that, or even a couple.

Remember that everyone has different situations so what is brilliant for one is very dark for another and vice verse.