Late denied request to add an uninvited guest turns to cancelation

Hi…my 2nd Airbnb guest was in town to ski. He checked in and left for the ski hill. Messaged me at 9:00 pm that a friend was also in town that was skiing also, and could his friend crash at my house? His friend’s family was at an Airbnb but the friend didn’t want to sleep on the floor (not sure where he was going to sleep in my house…I only have one queen bedroom downstairs).
I replied that it was a breach of my house rules, no uninvited visitors or guests and that I needed to meet anyone that was going to stay in my home (it is a shared space). The friend left, and I found out the next day that my guest left as well and canceled the weekend stay! Apparently, I am still getting paid for both Friday and Saturday nights by Airbnb.
So, my guest and his friend used my sauna, shower and towels but didn’t sleep overnight. Would you refund him for one night’s stay? He has NOT requested it, but it seems like he’s paying so much money for not even sleeping here one night.

Absolutely not. Zero reason to refund him anything. It was his choice to leave just because his buddy couldn’t stay. Him “paying so much” is not your concern. His booking prevented other guests from booking, why would you want to lose money over it?


No refunds. You’re in business to make money, not to have nutjobs think you’re a lovely kind person.


this is NEVER a reason for handing back money from a guest.

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His choice, his loss.

He made a decision – knowingly walk away from prepaid accommodation or spend the night alone – and he chose the former.

If you’re worried about being “fair,” is it fair to you to forego revenue because a guest made a deliberate choice when it was too late for you to clean up and find a replacement guest?.. Of course not!



He hasn’t asked you for a refund.

If you paid a refund you would lose money vs what you have now.

You fulfilled all the promises of your listing. Not even an act of God intervened to prevent the guest from enjoying all your premises and all the fruits of your hospitality.

I think I’d write a note to this guest on the platform (edit appropriately): I saw that you cancelled the remainder of your stay, presumably because I didn’t pre-approve your friend entering and staying in the property. I hope you understand that especially as a home-share Airbnb it’s important to this Host to know everyone residing in her home. Best to you. . … "

I am curious on whether there is an additional guest fee after just one guest in your listing. I’m guessing ‘no.’

So I’m thinking that the motivation for your house rules about no uninvited guests/visitors to the extent it’s about use of the amenities doesn’t come into play in this situation. After all, you didn’t say that for an extra guest an additional fee of $X applies.

I am assuming that, understandably, you wanted to meet the person(s) who would be staying in your home. If that is accurate you might wish to take a look at your communication to the guest when he mentioned he had a friend who’d like to ‘crash’ there. I’m a little surprised that if something like the following were your communication that the guest and friend would have left:

Thank you so much for letting me know about your friend who you’d like to join you. [“Your reservation is for one person; for a second person an additional guest fee of $X applies per night.” OR "We don’t apply an additional guest fee; the maximum occupancy is two. As Host, however, I need to meet anyone entering my home, whether overnight or not. Can we please set a time today where I can meet your friend tonight, say between 5 pm and 8 pm? Please suggest a time that works for you and we will go from there. I hope you are enjoying your stay!]

It isn’t just a matter of whether she charges extra for a second person, or meeting them- if the guest wanted to have someone else stay and the host has a guest count of 2, the reservation should be amended to include a second guest.

I did tell him that since it was within my home and a shared space, that I needed to meet everyone that was staying in it, and reminded him that that was included in my house rules. I have the listing for two people, but he reserved for himself only, so I accepted the reservation request knowing it was just for one person.

The issue was that he messaged me at 9:00 pm, when I was getting ready for bed, and I hadn’t met this guest. I could have asked if the friend intended on sleeping on the couch, which I would say no to, or in the same bed, which may be a different case. That didn’t occur to me to ask that at the time. I was just startled when I was upstairs and heard two men’s voices downstairs. I took a look to see if he had asked about it on the Airbnb platform, and he had. What do you think? Could I have asked something like, “Is he staying in the bedroom with you?” And in your experienced opinions, if he had said yes, would that have changed anything as far as being okay with it? I’m thinking not!

Is this something that I need to reiterate in the future when someone requests to reserve that room as a single person, that I don’t accept uninvited guests without meeting them?

All your thoughts are very helpful and I really appreciate your time.

No guest should bring someone else into your home without prior permission and you should state this in your listing info.

If you don’t charge extra for 2 guests, and you don’t mind a second person being added to the booking, then just have the guest amend the booking to 2.

And yes, when you message guests who are asking to book, let them know, if they have booked for 1, that no one other than themselves can enter the property, and if they are booking for 2, that needs to be on the reservation.


Yes, it is helpful to have a quick reminder of the salient rules. Upon confirmation we send this message:

We look forward to hosting you starting at 4 pm on short code start
[check-in date]short code end

; your check-out is at 10 am on short code start
[checkout date]short code end

. Your reservation is for short code start
[number of guests]short code end

and you understand that the home is suitable only for children age 12 and over. No animals. Maximum occupancy, whether overnight or not, is six and, unless otherwise agreed to, limited to registered guests. The person making the reservation must stay throughout the stay (no ‘third party bookings’ in Airbnb speak). The number of guests in your Reservation cannot increase until you arrive.

That’s great! Thank-you so much!

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Thank-you! I appreciate it.

Then I go on to say something nice, or at least something else. So it’s not ‘all about’ the rules.

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If you have not installed the Airbnb app on your phone, we recommend that you do so, and enable notifications. You’ll find the app a convenient way to communicate and hold information about your stay. You’ll find our guidebook at short code start
[guidebook]short code end to Worcester (and the area) on the site and the app.

Welcome to central Massachusetts and the second largest city in New England, the city that for over 200 years has been referred to as ‘the Heart of the Commonwealth.’ May its heart, and ours, touch yours.

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