Missing towels, pillow cases, etc

We have only been hosting since May. In that short time we have had pillow cases, towels and wash clothes walk away. Do you chalk it up as the cost of doing business? Do you ask guests about why they took it and ask for money back? I know in the hotel industry it is the cost of doing business, but in your home it feels like a violation and the costs add up. I buy quality products for the room and it’s frustrating.

Were they on beds or in closets?

People have been stealing quality products from hotels from time immemorium. Most of the time with zero consequence or accountability.

I think since you are having this issue… you might need to say in your rules.

All items in the room are the property of the owner and will be inventoried upon check out, including sheets, towels and other linens. Any items found missing will be charged to the guest.


The towel that was taken on this last visit was hanging in the bathroom. Pillowcase was in the closet and for the futon in the room.

How would you go about charging? Ask them for for a payment afterwards or take a security deposit, then charge against it? How hard is it to get those claims through Airbnb?

Okay… you are new, huh? :rofl:
This is such a basic question, I’m not going to type it all out for you…sorry. It’s saturday morning and I need to get on with my day. :sweat_smile:
So I suggest you read threads here with this topic, of which there are plenty, as well as all the FAQs pages on Airbnb’s site. These questions are all answered by them, so please brush up on the basics.


I’ve had one pillow get exchanged. They took a newish pillow out of a sham and put an old nasty pillow in there. I don’t know why and I don’t know who did it. I have covers on the pillows under the shams that don’t get washed every turn over and I have a lot of one night stays so it could have been any of several guests. It does feel like a violation but I would chalk it up to the price of business if it’s just a wash cloth, or pillow case. I get nice enough stuff on Amazon or at Costco. When I see a deal I buy extras.

So raise the price by a dollar a night and spread the cost across all stays. If you book 100 nights annually that should be enough to replace all the things that walk away during the year. I just say this because it’s unpleasant and time consuming to accuse someone and then charge them.


I do an inventory of items in the room and mark off everything before the guest arrives and show them the list casually in my information folder. I provide slippers/bathrobes as the bathrooms are private but not attached to the room. 2 pairs went of slippers ran off and I knew who exactly took them. Then I noticed my mugs, sugar bowls, glasses going walkies, so had to include that on the list. The robbing has stopped now, for a while anyway

1 Like

I LOVE this wording!!! We’ve never had an issue with linen going walkabout, but if we do, this will go on the front page of The Big Book of the Cabana.


@Remi_Gibbs make sure you replace any stolen items with the most expensive replacement you can find and send the receipt to Airbnb. Make sure you lodge the claim BEFORE the next guest arrives or within 14 days, whatever comes first or you will get nothing.


Thieves are scum. I don’t want scum in my house. I wish I could put that in my house rules!


Sadly, I’ve come to think of pillow replacement as a cost of doing business. I have several friends with beach area rentals. We start the summers with good quality, plenty of pillows and end with ratty pillows that guests left when they took ours plus most pillows missing.

The same is true of missing or stained wash cloths & sheets.

Costco frequently has nice pillows 2 for $10 & nice hotel towels etc at a good price. Occasionally, Amazon/Woot has nice 100% cotton 400-500 thread count for $29 queen. I stock up.

People see pillows & towels & washcloths as an entitlement. I was shocked when I shared my frustration about constantly buying towels & washcloths with a dear friend and her response was, “Oh I take towels & washcloths every time I travel. I use them to wrap my hot curling iron or cushion my purchases when I pack to go home.” The phrase “What the #@&#” fell out of my mouth followed by “you realize you are stealing, right?” My personal tact flew out the window.