Guest says they'll be here at 7pm...its 11:19 pm

How rude is this? Says she’s at a conference will be here at 7pm. At 8:30pm with no word from her I ask if she’s all right…she says conference went late I’ll be there by 11pm…it’s now 11:30pm…my listing says $10 late fee for arrivals after midnight…can I enforce?

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You could alter the reservation to include the $10 fee and hope she accepts it. I’m not an expert on this, hopefully one of the more experienced hosts will chime in.

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It may be rude, but from my perspective as a brand new host, its the norm and should be expected.

My first guests checked in 2 hours early with no warning. My second guests were fine. My third guests didn’t respond to my 10 AM message and showed up 4 hours past check in, breezily explaining they’d decided to go shopping. Though I didn’t NEED to be anywhere I wanted to leave my house to run some errands, one of which was to get a charging station/Bluetooth clock radio for their room.

From a host’s perspective, this is annoying, but I don’t know that there is a lot we can do about it or expect.

From a guests perspective, people are used to showing up at hotels anytime after check-in. Why should they think it should be any different at an Airbnb?

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@Chloe, your gentle response to this thread made me realize just how horrible my current wording is regarding check in times:

"~~Please be respectful as this is not the Marriott so there is no front desk person 24/7 :slight_smile: I have a job and a life, I do need for you to communicate what time you will be checking in!
~~Keep me updated if your check in time changes, I will be available 1/2 hour prior to your stated check in time, and 1/2 hour after your stated check in time, otherwise, you may be stuck waiting for me!
~~Check in is no later than 8pm. check out is 11am. "

For now, I’ve changed it to this:

~~I’m so happy you have chosen to be part of the Airbnb community, and that you have chosen to stay at (my place)! Please realize that Airbnb is much different than a hotel, there is no front desk person to check you in. As your host, I will sometimes be using vacation hours from work or cancelling my plans to greet you, so please be respectful, and keep me updated of your arrival time.


@brook2adks - I love your original wording! I am also clear in my listing - something like - we are a busy, working family - please inform us immediately of any schedule changes so that we can be here to greet you -

I think including verbiage about yourself personally “I’m am an active person in my community…” or such clues them in better than ‘we are not a hotel’. Airbnb is all about the personal connection, so make it a very personal explanation “I may be canoeing on the lake if you arrive other than your expected time” ; )


Much better @brook2adks.

Now perhaps the next step is think of a way, that it doesn’t matter when they arrive, depending on your particular situation of course. I used to wait for my guests, now I tell them where they can find me when they finally arrive.


That’s just not possible for me, I wear many hats…full time job, direct sales biz, I also volunteer and do some freelance work. And I sometimes like to hang at the beach or go for a hike, and cell service is often non existent in this neck of the woods. Since mine is a private room/bathroom, I’m not making big bucks here. What I need to keep in mind though, and show some gratefulness for however, is that my limited earnings do allow me to send financial assistance to my college aged nieces and does pay for some household repairs and updates. Yes, so actually, I think I do need to throw out some gratefulness, maybe I’ll dedicate this mornings yoga practice to it, and maybe it will make the frustration less :slight_smile:


I hear you. Good approach, annoying things are easier to accept when one steps back and re-considers the big picture.

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Excellent! It’s cliche but we can’t control others, only our reactions to them.


THAT is our new ‘airhost forum’ mantra!!!

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Aww, thank you @brook2adks!

I like your new wording. I feel it still gets your very valid message across while not hitting people over the head with it.

I also applaud your effort to be grateful. My husband and I make a point of communicating at least 5 things we’re grateful for every day. While I won’t say the practice has “changed my life” and made everything wonderful and rosy, it really does help.

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Brook, your original wording and new wording are both equally good!


lol now she has an opinion for each way!!

Love the quote - it’s something that I’m always having to relearn. [quote=“K9KarmaCasa, post:9, topic:6280”]
Excellent! It’s cliche but we can’t control others, only our reactions to them.

I feel responsible for everything going just right, and yet there as so many variables that are completely out of my control. The last 2 guests to book have refused, absolutely refused, to let me know when they will be arriving, like it’s some kind of state secret or something. They won’t even give a general timeframe, despite multiple, sweet-as-pie requests like “so I can be sure to have your room ready” and “so I can be sure to be here”.

So I have decided that if they show up and the room is not ready yet, it is entirely their own fault (these are back-to-back listings). There’s nothing I can do to make them show up at a certain time if they don’t want to. They can sit in the living room while I vacuum.


Sounds like something Werner Erhard would say. :smiley:


I’m sure to be jinxing myself here, but…
…in over two years I’ve only had guests arrive late once (and they kept me posted via texts) and earlier than agreed twice. I’m flexible about check-in, but I contact them around three/four days before they arrive, and ask them to give me a “window of, say, an hour, when they expect to arrive” . If they’re coming by car, delays are almost inevitable, so I ask that they text when they are around half an hour away (passing Preston from the South, or Kendal from the North). I know when I’m trying to estimate arrival times when I’m he guest feels tricky in an unfamiliar place. If they’re coming by train, I ask for the arrival time (we’re 5 mins walk from the station). It pretty much always works. I let them know in my email that I’m ‘planning my diary and need to be sure that I can arrange to be there to greet them and show them in’. I think their being reminded that I’m not always simply hanging around the flat motivates them to keep me informed - or else they may not get in!
Right, slightly worried now that my next folks will really mess me about re arrivals now I’ve written this :wink:.


@Artemis, but you can make sure they arrive or even contact you ~beyond~ a certain time (the official check-in time), insuring their place is ready, right?

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Let me add two maxims that are applicable to late check-ins/now shows: “you teach people how to treat you” and “money talks.” That is just as true of each of us as individuals as it is of us as a community.

Airbnb is about bringing human beings into one another’s homes, not selling our whole lives to travelers. Of course guests will want it to be just like a hotel in all the ways that are convenient for them, like a home in all the ways that are comfortable, like a resort in all the ways that are indulgent, etc. That’s because, as humans, we want it all. But guess what? We don’t get it all. The world places limits on us, and those limits are what hone our character so that we’re not whiny little spoiled brats who make life intolerable for everyone else. Airbnb is a two-way street. Hosts are not servants and the customer is not always right. We’re human beings sharing our homes and our lives for a little while. It’s incumbent upon all hosts to reinforce that with guests, gently and respectfully, when possible, and firmly when required.

Please don’t just surrender and say guests will show up when they feel like it, in spite of your check-in timeframe or your personal needs. You have a right to set reasonable & healthy limits around the time, energy, and money you invest in your Airbnb, and especially around what you sacrifice for the sake of other people’s selfishness or irresponsibility. If you don’t, you’re helping to create an internal Airbnb culture that is abusive to hosts, and making it harder for the rest of us to uphold some basic standards of respectful behavior.

Nearly all of my guests check in on time, every time. I’ve gone to great lengths to communicate and reinforce that, because I simply can’t sit around my house all day, and stay awake all night, waiting for someone to show up. I reinforce it by 1) posting a check-in window in my listing; 2) including on-time check-in in my house rules, 3) asking for a check-in time and flight details (so I can check independently for unavoidable delays and adjust accordingly) before I accept their booking, 4) confirming the check-in time a week ahead, the day before, and same day, 5) stating that people who show up outside their check-in time (without adequate notice) will most likely find me not at home, and that I’m not responsible for any resulting problems, 6) advertising a late fee for late check-ins (never had to charge one, because money-talks), 7) mentioning in reviews whether or not they checked in/out on time, and 8) consistently not accommodating people’s disrespect of my check-in requirements (consequences for not showing up on time are their own responsibility).

I’m polite and warm with my guests when setting these limits. I don’t make drama if they don’t show up. I just go on about my life, and if they call me two hours late from the front door asking why I’m not there, I tell them I was there at their check-in time, had to move on to other things when they didn’t show, and what time I’ll be back. I suggest places they can go eat, things they can do until then, and if I can get free earlier, I do. But I stopped sacrificing my life to unreliable and inconsiderate people a long time ago. If someone can’t be inconvenienced to take 15 seconds to let me know they’re running late, I certainly won’t sacrifice hours of my day for their convenience. Even so, I have 5-star reviews and Superhost status. I think that’s because I learned that it’s possible to set healthy boundaries and still be gracious and kind (something I’m always working to get better at doing).

Disclaimer: I’m not saying my way is the best way. It’s just the way that works for me, and one way to engender a more respectful host/guest dynamic throughout the Airbnb community.


Love it so much I want to hug you through the computer screen. Bravo.


Hi @brook2adks ,

I think your original wording is Ok. Perhaps a tad on the aggressive side (e.g. the “I have a job and a life” bit), but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. And I don’t think guests will hold this against you.

Having said that, you should use whatever wording you’re comfortable with. Personally, I tend to err more on the “talk softly” side of things, but everyone’s style is different. Mostly guests just want things taken care of and want to know what is what. Of course, one should bear in mind that, especially with international travellers, their arrival time may not be under their control, and one needs to be flexible. And perhaps saying one will be flexible in the listing is not a bad thing, so that they know that. But then again, there are always inconsiderate jerks who will not keep you informed and turn up whenever. So one should not seem like a pushover either.

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