Guests bringing their own linens (not towels, just bed)

I will be recovering from knee replacement when I reopen in March (I close for two months, and hope to be going well by March, but…)
My tiny cabin has a loft bed which requires one to crawl around to make it. Would I be out of line to ask my March guests (assuming I ‘should not’ be crawling yet?) to bring their own bed linens? I’d still provide towels and other essentials of course.
OR would it be better I provide the linens and just tell them I am temporarily unable to make the loft bed. It’s the only bed ( besides a small sleeper loveseat) in the cabin and is a queen.

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You could offer them the option of which they’d prefer and offer a small discount if they provide their own linens. I’d be sure to let them know why you are offering them the option and let them know you can provide the sheets if they want but they will need to make the bed up themselves.


Is there someone in your family or a neighbor that can make the bed for you?


You might have to bite the bullet financially and employ someone to make the bed. When I’m a guest, I expect everything to be ready for me when I arrive.

Even if guests say that they are willing to make up the bed themselves, I suspect that in some cases they are just being polite.

I’d try as hard as possible to make sure that your guests have a great stay with you.


Asking guests to bring their own bed linen is a no-no imo.

When guests book an Airbnb/ hotel etc bed linen is expected as standard


I’ve seen lots of Air rentals that tell guests they need to bring their own sheets/towels. Nothing I’d want to do as a guest, but guess some don’t mind.


Funnily enough, over the summer we had several guests asking if they need to bring bed linen and towels, specifically French and Spanish guests from up near the border. Maybe it’s a regional thing there.

They all got the same answer, nope, it’s al provided. A couple of them still brought their own shit, which meant a lot less towels to wash!



During the pandemic I’ve had more guests that don’t seem to be using my towels and even the bed looks more pristine. I wonder if they are bringing their own stuff out of an abundance of caution with regard to the virus?


I don’t think so, other than their pillows they were all happy to use the bed linen already in place.


I meant at my house. I do live in Texass.

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Here’s the options I would go for:

  1. March is over 6 months away, that seems like enough time time to make arrangements to have a helper with you to make the bed during your turnovers.

  2. Leave a folded stack of linens on the bed for guests to make the bed themselves with a note explaining the situation. If you just put a note about it in the listing or send it to guests in a message, you can’t be sure they’ll read it.

I’m not sure why you would consider having guests bring their own linens when your only restriction is not being able to make the bed. Is it because you have to crawl around to get the linens off? If so, what about checking for stuff guests left behind and such?

Whether you hire a helper or ask guests to bring own linens depends on your market. In my coastal area, it is common for guests to bring own bed linens & towels to save linen fees.

@shadowmnt I think it will depend entirely on your location as whether guests will be willing to make the bed themselves or even bring their own linens with them. There are some places where bringing your linens is still done at some rentals (from before Airbnb), like Cape Cod and the Jersey shore. Are there any other listings doing the same in your area? If not, it’s probably best to hire help. Or you could provide the linens, tell them why you can’t make the bed and then tell them they are getting a discount for making the bed themselves and ask if it’s acceptable when they book/inquire.

I have a set of bunks. I definitely can no longer crawl around to make them and my cleaner has a bad back and doesn’t like it either. My solution was to increase the per head extra price to $60/day and pay her $25 extra if they need making.


That’s is correct. I will not be able to crawl around the loft bed (access is a ladder) to make it, for some time I suspect. It’s a pain in the butt anyway, but my guests love it. I’ve been told that 6 months is about recovery time to get back to doing things like that. Perhaps I’ll heal quicker, just trying to examine possibilities ahead of time. And yes, having a friend help me is a good option. Just going over all the options just in case. Appreciate the feedback.

A friend of mine had a knee replacement last year. She doesn’t have to crawl around in a loft but it also didn’t take her 6 months. She’s late 50’s and about 50 pound overweight so not like she’s a marathon runner. She is a big fan of doing the exercises to build up the muscles around the knee before surgery. So if you can do those, it will help. Good luck!

Well I’m not saying that it will take me 6 months. I am an avid hiker, not overweight, live on a farm so I usually rack up two to three miles a day on my pedometer. So being pretty fit I don’t think it will take 6 months. However I also am realistic in that several people I know who have had knee replacements, 80% of them are doing well, and 20% of them are having problems. Of course they are unlikely to be as active as I am. I’m in my mid-60s, and I’m just trying to be cautious. I don’t want to have to cancel people if something should go wrong that requires me to have additional rehab, etc. I’m already having to figure out how to get help for my farm and maintenance work on my property. I’ll work that out too. It was just a thought that I had to see if I could stay open for these months of rehab or if I should just temporarily shut down until I felt comfortable crawling around in the loft.
I had already spoken to my surgeon about it and he said that crawling around, even on a mattress, it’s just something I shouldn’t be doing for quite some time. And that pretty much takes care of some of the extreme hiking that I do! I just have to be careful because I don’t want to have to go back for a repair. And yes I am doing strengthening exercises along with my hiking.
And for anyone who’s thinking of building a tiny cabin, DON’T PUT THE BED IN A LOFT!. I should have taken the extra time and money to add on a bedroom to the back of the building. But oh well I guests love it!

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One of the issues with hiking is going to be that you’ll be at a higher risk of falling for awhile. So, if you are hiking on uneven ground, or steep slopes or step on a rock wrong, you might fall even though you wouldn’t have before. It will be 3 months minimum before you hike maybe longer depending on the kind of hiking you do. However, you should be able to do real walking for exercise on regular ground by 2 months or so.

My concern with the loft bed is you coming down from it, even more than the crawling. You can and should make therapy goals around the things you need to do for your Airbnb, ask for an OT for that and telll them what you want to work on.

Not everywhere. I thought the same, but found out some time ago that there are areas where it has always been traditional that guests bring their own linens and towels. And are accustomed to doing so. Mostly seaside or lakeside cottages in the US or Europe, it seems.

These are areas that I assume people drive to, so no big deal to pack some linens.

I think you can have some of both. Unless you get fully booked well in advance or you get a competent temporary co-host soon, I’d block off the 3-6 months after surgery. But then if you have the surgery, it goes well and you think you can handle everything but the loft bed changes then open it up to folks who will make their own bed. Take a booking or two and then see how it goes. If it goes well open some more dates and so on until you feel confident the the Airbnb isn’t going to be more trouble than it’s worth. I know it’s hard to close and give up the $$ but living alone and having a knee surgery and running a farm is more than enough to have on your plate. But stay open to changing course if things go better than expected.