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Guests not washing hands it seems

A lot of my guests seem to travel with their own soap.

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That is strange. I provide pump hand soap and wrapped bar soap in the bathroom, and pump hand soap and liquid dishwashing soap in the kitchen (even though I have a dishwasher with detergent pods also) and I have to refill the things all the time.

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My housekeeper says that some people put water in the soap dispensers. We can’t figure out why! Maybe your soap was thinned and more has been used than you thought?


We must have more hygenic guests :slight_smile:

Bathrooms and kitchens both got liquid soap dispensers, €1 a pop from our local Chinese bazaar. Smell nice enough and not obvious budget buys, one guest even complimented them so I gave her an unopened one to take away!

They hold about 330/350ml and we go through a couple a month during peak periods. The shampoo and body wash get well used as we get a lot of folks flying in, many on hand luggage only. If they remove the 100ml restriction on liquids (which is being discussed in Europe) then it’ll save us a few euros!



Hi RRR, That’s been my experience too. 4 years ago I bought two large containers of liquid soap from Costco to pour into my hand dispenser. I am still on the first container.

FYI - I always spray down all light switches, door knobs and remote controls. I do however refuse to use the blacklight. I think I would be totally grossed out.

OH and for the first time a guest stopped up my toilet. I had to rush home and take the plunge (gross). Now there’s an elegant plunger (as much as one can be) in the bathroom.

These guests also complained that my refrigerator was too high and froze their product. So now I have to add check Refrigerator temperature to my cleaning check list. No rest for the weary. :wink:


My god, you’ve just reminded me of our absolute nightmare scenario that happened when we got the the first of our two apartments opened up.

First Airbnb guest, lovely guy working at the US base in Rota, staying for five days.

Got a message from him after first night, “have you got a plunger, I think I’ve blocked the loo”.

Told him where it was and checked all was good. Yes he says.

Same story at check out, so we assumed he’d simply used too much paper, or had been eating too much red meat :wink:

Next guest a one nighter from BDC the following day. Couple of strange German women who sold BitCoin for a living.

Inspecting apartment after check out found several floaters :poop:

Tried flushing, no go. Used drain rod, liquid unblocking solutions, slight improvement but still not flushing like it should. Got guests coming the next day and second apartment nowhere near finished. Spoke to builder, he says someone must have flushed a nappy or something down it.

This then became a circular discussion where he says nowt to do with him and suggested we get the Dyno Rod guy out. No way, €400 minimum!

My OH was talking about cancelling next guests, which would have been disastrous to our standings. So, I started to think about it logically. I knew it was a new waste pipe, I’d been there when it was being fitted, and it connected to the main waste which was flowing (and flushing to) fine.

Only thing left is the actual lavvy. Out with the tools time.

When I removed the pan the problem was obvious, the guy who’d fitted it had used a straight connector from pan to waste, when he should have used an offset one. It meant the joint was compressed and only allowed small poos to pass, so to speak.

Quick run to hardware shop, €5 and twenty minutes work later, a perfectly flushing lavvy. I even road tested it myself :slight_smile:

It’s funny when we look back on it now, but at the time it was shaping up to be not the best start to a STR business! Both sets of guests gave us good reviews despite the problem, they probably blamed themselves. Our builder was very quiet after I told him, especially as I’d photographed the evidence, both human and hardware related :slight_smile:


He owes you a BIG favor!

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Got to be honest, he’d already done us so many (seriously) big favours, that I can’t hold it against him. We’d never have finished this project without him and he is more of a friend now, than just the builder. We joke about it now, at least I do and he laughs, sort of.



That is so strange. We’ve gone through one and a half bottles of liquid soap in about 6 months (most weekends being booked, but not all) not to mention refilling the shower dispenser with body wash and shampoo etc. Maybe they are using hand sanitizer?

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@nolabelle, like your guests, ours seem to use hand soap at a normal rate. They also use the shampoo and shower gel we provide.

For other hosts whose guests don’t use liquid hand soap, maybe check that the pump works. They can get clogged.

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Just like toilet paper, some people use minimal amounts and some seem to go through absurd amounts. Some people may only pump a bit of soap on their hands when washing them, which is all that’s really necessary, and some will use far more than required. I had an ex-boyfriend who used to lather himself up in the shower like you see on TV ads trying to sell soap or shampoo. He would also squeeze a huge worm of toothpaste on his brush, again like the TV ads. It was ridiculous how much soap, shampoo and toothpaste he went through.


The story Big Boy by David Sedaris comes to mind.


If they get used… The pumps work.


I have liquid and bar soap at the bathroom sink and the tub. They use a little, but they aren’t there much. I imagine the soap to toilet paper consumption would tell.

I had one guest who had some sort of OCD, using 16oz/500ml of liquid soap per week, two rolls of toilet paper per day and asked for more towels after going through a dozen in less than a week. He was a long term guest and I put him on limits and he could buy more on his own past that. I saw him coming in a few days later with a couple dozen towels.

He was there less than 12 hours a day and after his stay my water and gas bills showed an enormous increase. He must have been taking 3 showers a day. I’ve stopped taking long term guests after this. There were other issues that influenced my decision.


Time to introduce hand washing education camps in families and schools.

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It is possible they are using their own, or maybe they do not like the one in house.

We have a septic tank which can only cope with toilet paper. I have a laminated A5 notice on the wall by the loo paper. The heading is “Save out septic tank”. It has a photo of a toilet holder with paper and a large bold ✓

Then I have a list of things you can’t put down the loo like nappies/diapers, wipes etc. Beside this list is a large bold X
I use the picture approach because we get many guests who don’t have English as a first language. I’ve noticed that many business owners have a written notice which must puzzle foreign guests… I know there are many languages I don’t understand.

This reminds me of the Employees Must Wash Hands Before Returning to Work signs. Like the rest of the world shouldn’t bother.


I’m in California and get mostly over-nights. I’d say the same about my guests’ hand washing, with one caveat – most of my guests are Americans and young people whose “sunk cost” includes at least one shower per day. So I’m guessing, rather than just washing their hands, they’re washing whole bodies (and they easily use 100ml body soap each per day).

Someone mentioned clogged toilets, but we haven’t had one in over a year and a half and nearly 100 guest stays. Previous to this house, we were managers of an apartment building, and when we lost our handyman, we found a great local service, same day, who would use a powered snake to clear toilets for only about $40 US (no, I’m not missing a zero). I looked up charges on the internet, and the average seems to be about $140 for a simple job.

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This is our experience too. We put out the exact same items, with wall-mounted shampoo and conditioner dispensers in the shower. We sleep 10 on a regular basis for usually 1 week, but the amount of soap still in the containers and sometimes completely unwrapped bar soaps indicate that families have different bathing customs.

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