What are the signs you have a 5 Star Guest?

We spend a lot of time focusing on the challenging guests; let’s flip the equation and comment on the indications that you just might have a 5 Star Guest?

Saturday, I had a set of guests check in today for 4 days.

  1. Communication prior to arrival was exceptional
  2. During checkin they were all smiles and happy
  3. Then I get a message “PS. We have a something small from Canada for you :slight_smile: ” … they presented me with some Candadian Maple Syrup.

NOTE: they haven’t checked out yet but I’m feeling positive so far.


Guests with numerous prior great reviews is sign #1. Another indication is guests that show they really have read the listing/looked at the pictures with a comment in their messages like “I’m looking forward because I really love dogs.”


I had two OUTSTANDING guests recently who cleaned all their own hair out of the sinks and shower drain. Such a small thing but caused me to jump up and down saying “Yippee!” haha.


Maple syrup is definitely the sign of a great guest!

My favorite guests give me the first tip-off in their messaging. They’re kind and open without being overly effusive.

Any asks are inquires rather than declarations. Like “We have a flight that arrives at 12:30pm - would it be possible to check in early?” as opposed to “Our flight arrives at 12:30, so we’ll need to check in early.”

And like @KKC says, they mention things from the listing that show they’ve read it. Guests that mention my easter egg in the house rules are a green flag.


I know that this is very boring of me but just about all my guests are five star guests. Even the ones who aren’t exactly wonderful have various aspects of their personality, or there’s been something about their stay here, that makes me happy to have them again. (I’m not sugar coating here. Yes, I’ve had one or two experiences that weren’t exactly fun).

I’ve had great guests from all nationalities including the ones that have engendered many a post here about how ‘awful’ they are. I’ve had some truly splendid teenage guests and a few couples in their eighties - and everything in between. I can’t generalise in any way about nationality, age group or any other factor.

Told you it was boring… :slight_smile:


I don’t find it boring. I find it a pleasant contrast to much of what is posted on this forum.

I share similar experiences. Out of 120+ guests I have only given less than 5 stars to 2 guests. Not all were perfect but overall were good.

Maybe my intent of this post was more of ‘Gold Star’ / crème de la crème of guests, those that would rate 5+ if such a rating existed

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And an excellent topic this is too :slight_smile:

I sometimes think in horror about what any would-be host thinks when they read this forum. Because after all, this forum is readable by anyone in the world and come up well in search engines (which is probably how we all found it).

There are so many stories here about things going wrong, or let’s say, things being less than perfect, and so I wonder what impression we give.

People don’t realise that a lot of what goes on here is simply venting. - it’s an online substitute for kicking the dog or yelling at your other half. And sometimes people post problems that could have quite easily been avoided but that are due to the host being a beginner or being unsure of themselves.

This is actually a fantastic business to be in. Most guests are perfectly lovely.


One of the best compliments… “I always book here because it makes me feel like I am at home!” in his review. This particular guest has stayed with me on/off since October.


The same guests sent this message today. I’m smelling 5+

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I agree. I follow about 5 forums airbnb, HomeAway, BDC, B&B

I think it would be productive for some of these people, to grind less on the imperfect guests who have the nerve to leave an occasional four star review, and focus more on being a top-notch business owner.

Some venting is very appropriate, but some of the venting seems a little immature.


Ooo, I love that the good guests were Canadian, @HH_AZ.
Or maybe not Canadian, but they are giving Canadian gifts? Whatever. Syrup is delicious.
Just said goodbye to repeat guests who book here every Victoria Day weekend (which this is). They gave me a bear hug after packing up. They were covered in mud from their canoeing/camping adventure.
I suppose I should be complaining. “The guests got the host all muddy.”
But it was lovely. 5 stars!


Nice thread :slight_smile: My perfect guests are the ones who understand that my place is old, not perfect and that I’m still renovating. They like the quirkiness and don’t mind the unsightly bits. And they feel comfortable enough to be relaxed but they’re out most of the time! And they have a sense of humour. That is a big plus.


Magwitch, that sounds like a comment I would make!!
I love guests who give me a hug, guests who say the place is like home and guests who eat everything I cook for them!!

I think moderation is the key, like Goldilocks and the 3 bears. I find that my best guests tend to be easy going but conscientious and sensible.

They are friendly in their communications but keep messages reasonably short and to the point. They respond within a few hours to admit of my messages throughout their stay. They may ask a question or two that is not already covered on my listing or on my guide but don’t have a laundry list. They read the messages I send and notices I post inside the unit and this is evident because they do the things they are supposed to, eg. contact me shortly after checking in, take shoes off, take out the garbage, do the dishes, etc on the way out. They usually let me know how things are going, how they like the place and say thanks and goodbye on their way out. The cleaner finds things in a good state.

These guests leave a good review, take good care of things and don’t give me any grief or leave me with any surprises or complaints from other occupants.




From a former would-be host perusing these forums: you hosts here do a great job informing what the business is like. It gave me the confidence and knowledge to become an actual host.

If the venting, whining, and resulting tough-love perspective checks that show up here deter someone from hosting, well, they likely weren’t cut out for it in the first place.


Glad that you jumped in. I’d suggest that while you can learn from this forum and be prepared for some of the ongoing issues, its not until you experience guests and learn from them that you really get a sense of what its all about.

In a different topic @KKC commented about an approach shared with 2 other hosts / moderators: @jaquo, @CatskillsGrrl :

maybe the reason we three have had so much success as hosts is because our attitudes are a little different than that of the average host.

I agree with that view because I’ve found that Hosting is an attitude adjustment -> rather than it’s all about me, it’s now about the guest. The hosting bonus is when you get a guests (like the one I led this topic off with) who realize and appreciate that.


I did read that thread and agree that there is a lot to be said about how attitudes and outcomes are linked.

To take it back to the OP, I love our area so much, I guess on reflection… I kind of already think they are 5 star guests for having such exquisite taste in getaway destinations.:blush:

All we have to do is the best we can with what we have the ability to control.

Doing it with a professional, positive attitude helps ensure professional, positive outcomes.