How to Be a Great Guest

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I think most of us have experienced a bad house guest before. You know, your cousin who leaves their stuff out for you to trip over first thing in the morning or your little brother who comes to stay and leaves his dirty dishes in the sink. You’re happy to host them, of course, but it’s frustrating nonetheless. And when you are the guest in someone else’s home, you want to make sure you’re being considerate.

The thing about staying with a Her Host host is you are a guest in someone else’s home. The fees collected by Her Host hosts are minimal and are only meant to help offset the cost of your host’s time and anything of theirs you may use during your stay. Your host certainly isn’t getting rich from allowing you to stay with them. In fact, they’re doing you a favor by helping you save money on accommodations. You can return the favor by being a good guest.

So what does being a good HerHost guest look like?

Here are nine things for you to keep in mind during your stay.

1. Remember that you are a guest, not a customer. Your host does not work for you, and you should follow any ground rules that they set. Their house, their rules.

2. Communicate honestly with your host. If you are traveling with a male, you should always let your host know in advance. Let them know when you will be arriving, and if your plans change for some reason, keep them updated. The best way to avoid any issues is to communicate.

3. No parties. You wouldn’t show up to spend a week at your grandma’s house and then surprise her by inviting a bunch of strangers back to her house and throwing a party, would you? I sure hope not, and you shouldn’t do that to your host either.

4. No smoking. Being a good guest means being respectful of your host’s space. You should never smoke inside your host’s house, and you should only smoke outside if you’ve communicated with your host and gotten their approval first.

5. Try not to be loud. Just because you are on vacation doesn’t necessarily mean your host is too. Respect their need for some peace and quiet, and especially if your host is sleeping, be aware of how much noise you’re making. Turn the television down, be careful not to slam doors or cabinets, etc.

6. Don’t touch your host’s personal things without permission. Your host is already sharing their space, and they even may offer to share other things with you. How nice of them! But don’t eat their food or otherwise help yourself to their belongings unless they’ve told you that’s okay.

7. Pick up after yourself. If you have your own bedroom, keep your things neat and confined to your room. If you’re crashing in a common area, keep your stuff in your suitcase. Wash your dishes, and clean up any mess you may make in the bathroom. Your host should not have to pick up after you or come home to a mess.

8. Respect your host. Beyond respecting your host’s space, you should also be respectful of your host as a person. Be kind when speaking to them and stay mindful of their culture and boundaries.

9. Treat their space better than your own. Maybe you’re fine with leaving the dinner dishes until the morning or tossing your wet towels on the floor of the bathroom when you’re at home. But doing those things in your host’s home still makes you an inconsiderate guest. If you go by the rule of treating their space better than you’d treat your own, you should have no problems.

We definitely don’t want our hosts to be discouraged because of a bad experience, and you don’t want to earn the reputation of being a bad guest. I think if you keep these nine things in mind, both you and your host will have an excellent experience. And hey, if you need a not-so-subtle way to remind your little sister to bring her own hummus next time she spends the night instead of eating all of yours, feel free to send this article to her. I don’t mind being the messenger! 🙂

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