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Minors travelling alone


I just heard from someone who wanted to have his 15 year old son stay, with another minor, possible also 15 (it wasn’t clear). They were going to be competing in a local tennis tournament. He was going to book the room.

I explained to the poster that this wouldn’t work, since the person booking needed to be the one occupying the room. However, he didn’t seem inclined to take no for an answer. I’m not thrilled at the idea of hosting two 15 year olds, anyway.

I’m think I’ll decline this one, though it’s open for the moment.

Also, the poster did not instill confidence. He wrote 13th to the 17th, when it seems he meant to write 13th to the 15th. Also, he has basically no information on his Airbnb page - just a verified email address.

Just curious - at what age would people be comfortable have two young men staying with them? And what is the lower age cutoff for Airbnb members anyway?

Regards, Faheem Mitha

Not sure what the cutoff age is, but this person is asking to break terms of service with Airbnb. I’d send them an email so when you decline it won’t be held against you.
The youngest guests I ever hosted were brothers, 20 and 18. They were very considerate young men, and I wrote them a glowing review!

I’m kind of in this position but from the guest standpoint,. My 16 year old is doing an internship that’s too far to commute every single day. It’s a great opportunity, so I’m going to stay with him in different Airbnbs only on the weekdays. Then we’ll return home for the weekend.

The issue I’m having is that some hosts think it will be just him. It won’t. I don’t want him staying alone in an apartment by himself in the city any more than they do. I’ve tried to explain it as clearly as possible.

I’ve gotten some declines and some acceptances. I have 7 different weeks to cover, so it’s taking some time, but we are getting there.

I think two teenagers are worse than one. Much more likely to get into mischief. Would decline if I were in your shoes.

That sounds like a good idea. Can you tell me what email address I should use? There doesn’t appear to be any India-specific contact information for Airbnb, which is a bit worrying.

I suppose the important criteria is whether they are in a position to pay for themselves online.

Regards, Faheem Mitha

Agreed, plus issues of liability if something goes wrong. Thanks.

Regards, Faheem Mitha

I wouldn’t accept a booking unless the person whose Airbnb account is being used will also be staying. That is regardless of how old they are.

Fifteen is a bit young but teenagers vary so much depending on where they are from. I don’t ask guests how old they are but I’d say that my youngest have been seventeen or so. And they were lovely :slight_smile:

Some fifteen year olds are very mature and others are just big kids. I don’t want to generalise too much but European teenagers (in my experience) are pretty safe bets.

Postscript to this thread. It’s alarmingly hard to find an Airbnb contact email address. Is it a secret? Do I need to use the drop down forms available? Those all require the issues fits into specific categories. If so, that’s not good.

And a postscript to the postscript - in this particular instance (see the beginning of the thread), is it better to decline or not do anything at all? I’m unclear what the significant difference between these options is, if any.

We had a super young girl from Argentina stay with us in NYC. I think she was 17 she may have been 18 but I doubt it. Her mom messaged me and talked me through the whole thing, she was doing an interview for an internship close to our place, she was going to have 4 days in the city alone to explore, then her mom was joining her Friday night for the weekend, then they were both leaving on Monday. The profile was in the moms name and she was brand new to Airbnb. We took a chance and these two couldn’t have been nicer more respectful guests. I think the young girl was in bed by 10 every night. Teenagers can’t get into that much trouble these days, without help from an adult. However I had extensive conversations with this woman before hand. Told her all about myself and my husband, and she about her and her daughter. She felt safer having her daughter come home to a full house vs a lonely hotel room. Made sense once I thought about it. Is this perhaps the fathers position as well? Ask lots of questions but in the end, always go with your gut.

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There is no way I would accept minors travelling alone! I also think it is extremely odd that a parent would rent an Airbnb and expect someone to consider hosting them. It is almost like the parent want a built in baby sitter which they would not get in a hotel. I am blown away that anyone would even consider it.


I think the issue with a hotel is that a guest under 18 can not check in solo.

Hi @Dee_Woods,

I personally would not do that. Airbnb clearly says that the person who books must occupy the premises. And this is one rule that I think makes sense.

This is a dicey enough business without ignoring the rules, in my opinion.

Regards, Faheem Mitha

In UK they have to be at least 16 years old to stay in hotel without an adult.Personally I do not accept young people under 18.

That sounds like a good policy. I wonder how young you have to be to have a credit card, internationally.

Yup. And, in my AirBnB a guest under 18 cannot check in at all no matter who is with him. It’s stated very clearly in my rules, so i never run into the problem of minors. :smiley:

I would hate to get into the ‘national stereotype’ argument but I find that teenaged European guests (which includes the UK) are much more mature than American teenagers.

OK, now I’ll stand back and wait for the flak :slight_smile:



Totally agree with you

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Two unaccompanied 15 year olds cannot stay in a hotel by themselves, that’s why they turn to Air. I think the minimum age is 18.

I would agree with that. (And I have an “American Teenager” of my own.)
It’s because kids in the US can’t go anywhere by themselves. With the exception of a few major cities, public transportation is terrible. Many suburbs are just mazes of residential streets where you can’t really walk anywhere. Many kids I know are used to being driven everywhere and have trouble giving directions to their own houses.

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I wouldn’t touch this with a 10 meter pole. If ANYTHING happens to those boys for ANY reason while in or near that apartment you can bet the father will hold you liable! Oh, I thought you would look out after them. Plus I can see local politicians moving to stop rentals like this because AirBnBers are just too irresponsible. The upside is tiny and the downside is HUGE!


Hi @chrlsrchrdsn,

Excellent summary. I agree with everything you say. Though this is India, so there might be special problems with this sort of arrangement which don’t exist in the West. Anyway, the best way to not get in trouble is to see it coming and get out of the way. :slight_smile:

Regards, Faheem Mitha

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