Airbnb Etiquette - A guide to best practises for a guest

Level 7
Los Angeles, CA

Airbnb Etiquette - A guide to best practises for a guest

I have an extra Airbnb Etiquette posting on my website and in the Guest Manual for people new to Airbnb.  

Some of my Guests are new to Airbnb so I am providing this list of universally recommended best practices..  Staying at an Airbnb is not the same as staying at a Hotel and there are a few key differences, including check in procedures, the rating system, etc. Being aware of these practices will help you get the most from your stay. 

  1. Communicate, Communicate, Communicate :  Communication is the most important element of Airbnb etiquette. When, how and where you communicate can lead to understanding while answering your questions and helping to resolve any travel issues.  

  2. Don’t wait!

  3. Hosts work hard to provide their Guests with a great place to stay.  The time to contact your Host with some positive feedback or with any concerns you may have, is soon upon your arrival, or any time during your stay.  Host are happy to answer any questions, to provide assistance and want the opportunity to make any repairs or adjustments you require.  Don’t put up with a problem, then wait to complain in a public review, especially if it is something that is easily remedied.

  4. Always communicate over the Airbnb App :  Using the Airbnb App for messaging is an Airbnb requirement.  It creates a record which can be used to resolve disputes.  If your new to Airbnb, you may not be accustom to using an App to communicate.  Set an alert that will notify you when you have a message. 

  5. Read the entire listing, look at the pictures and agree to the House Rules.  During the booking process, Airbnb requires the Guest read and agree to all Airbnb policies and your Host’s house rules.  This will answer most of your questions.  Also review the house manual.

  6. Specific instructions :  After booking your property, Airbnb will disclose the address, parking instructions, check in time and the lock code. 

  7. Do not arrive early or check out late without permission : Early check-ins and late check outs policies vary and are set by your Host in the House rules.

  8. Send a message with your estimated arrival time :  It is good etiquette to give your Host an estimated time of arrival as soon as you know.  An out of town guest may want to plan their travel with the Check in time in mind. Once you and your guests arrive, ask all the questions you want and  make yourself at home.  

  9. Give feedback : During your stay, there is not really not much need for communication here, but sometimes hosts will contact you to see how you’re doing .  If you have time, just reply with a simple, “Great. Thanks.” or if there’s an issue, make sure to let them know right away.  Hosts would much rather make your stay pleasant and fix any problems ASAP instead of getting a review later on that brings up issues that could be resolved easily.  

  10. Please check out on time : Late checkouts upend your host’s cleaning schedule and impact fellow members of the Airbnb community.  And if you check out early, to catch a plane or for whatever reason, let your host know when you plan to leave. A simple text or message on the app is good enough.

  11. Leave the home tidy : Before you leave, follow the check out instructions send by your Host.  It’s usually not required for you to wash the linens or make the beds.   Your Host will do that as part of the cleaning process.  You should respect your host and their time by cleaning up any messes. You should do your dishes or run the dishwasher before you go.  It’s also a good idea to wipe down counters and leave the kitchen as you found it.  

  12. Empty the trash :  It is common courtesy to empty the trash and and utilize any recycling bins before you leave.

  13. Conserve water and power : It is always a good idea to conserve resources. Take brief showers, turn off lights when you leave the house or in a room, leave patio lights on or run the heater or air conditioner with all the windows open.

  14. Make suggestions and leave a review : It’s a big deal to share a home with someone, so it’s nice to let your host(s) know you appreciated them.  Leaving a positive, honest review on the Airbnb app will help them with their business.  And if you have followed these etiquette rules, they will give you a positive review also. 

  15.  Reviews are not the place to vent any frustrations you have : Airbnb’s private messenger is the appropriate place to inform your host of any details about the stay that bothered you (like a burner on the stove that wouldn’t light).  Anything less than 5 stars is a negative review in the Airbnb world.  The Airbnb review system is different from Hotel rating systems.  You will want positive reviews also from your Host to let future Hosts know that you will respect their property..


Thank you for being a 5 star guest and welcome to the Airbnb community!

I hope this guide helps all potential guests to understand how to make a stay smooth for both Hosts and the Guests. Also, hoping that other Hosts find the above information useful to set up a guest manual.

4 Replies 4
Community Manager
Community Manager
Toronto, Canada

Hey @Stephen1004 ,


Thank you so much for putting this forth! I am sure this guest manual would help a lot of guests understand Host expectations. 



Please follow the Community Guidelines

@Stephen1004 Great idea!  I hope you don't mind if I borrow your idea - this is well worth leveraging.  I'm a new SuperHost and plan on keeping it that way.  This list is added value for those "new" guests!

@Karen3596 Absolutely:) 

Level 10
Yulee, FL

Love it. #3 and #15 especially. I would also add a #16  “don’t show up with extra guests or visitors”.