Number of Guests Booking: Suggestion for Airbnb

Level 10
Edmonton, Canada

Number of Guests Booking: Suggestion for Airbnb

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I have seen a common issue posted on the Community Center which happens with several hosts on Airbnb and that is with the number of guests people book for and the number of guests who show up at the door.  This is often a result of 1) a guest trying to "sneak" in extra guests because the host charges extra per person over "X" amount or 2) some guests feel that children should or are not considered people/guests.


Airbnb states that, ""You need to disclose the total number of guests accurately when making reservation requests, including infants and children (Travelling with children)." Now most people would not even know where to find this and it is not on the booking page when you choose the number of guests.  


Airbnb needs to change the way guests book when it comes to inputing the number of guests.  By guests showing up at a host's listing with more people than the host is expecting puts the guest and the host in a difficult position.  It is essentially starting the Airbnb experience out as a negative experience.  Any number of things could happen including 1) the host turning the guest away or only allowing the number of guests in that were booked or 2) putting the burden onto the host by now having to charge for extra guests.  This is not good for the Airbnb brand and you can bet the host will not be getting a favourable review even though the situation was not their fault.


I would like to see Airbnb add a box for the number of children that will be staying just like the airlines and hotels have on their sites.  This would also help out for those hosts who have not checked off "Family Friendly" as the search would not even show their listing if the children box is filled out.


What are your thoughts and experiences of extra guests showing up at your doorstep?  Should this be something that Airbnb should implement or leave it as it is?  


Please share your thoughts below AND complete this quick 2 question survey: (Results of the poll are here:


Here are a couple of examples of what Airbnb could include:









Superhost Ambassador ~ Host Club Community Leader ~ Community Expert ~ Experienced Co-Host

156 Replies 156
Level 10
Eugene, OR

I was just called "unethical" and "discrimanating against children" because I wanted to add a $20 fee for 3 extra children. YIKES! This was a potential guest who had no reviews.  Since she had no reviews, I asked who would be staying and are there any pets (since I've been around that block before). She said 2 adults, a poodle an the "kiddos". She however had selected "2" guests, so I inquired how many in the party and the ages. She said 5, one is a baby and gave me no other info. My guest house is small and I have a limit of 3 and I charge $20/night for the additional guest after 2, and $10 for the dog/night. There is extra work forsure with more people (extra bed), toddlers & crawlers touch everything and most dogs shed. IMO a two year old is no longer a "baby". The CDC calls 1-3 year old's, toddlers and 0-1 yo's infants.


I find it disconserting to be falsely accused of discrimination and unethical behaviour when I had to eek out from this woman who would be staying at my house. I like the idea of the drop down for adults, children 1 and older, and children 12months & younger, AND PETS. And an acknowledgement of the accuracy by the guest (loss of reservation & cost if not accurate). 


Anyway, I'm just feeling bad about this whole experience, about first having to eek out the fact that there are 5 people and a dog really wanting to rent a 3 person space, and then to be called names for wanting to charge $30/night extra and making an exception to allow 5. Thats not my kinda airbnb community....



Hi @Marcy1,


I hope you declined her?



Superhost Ambassador ~ Host Club Community Leader ~ Community Expert ~ Experienced Co-Host

Actually, I was so shocked that I called Airbnb and we decided that the better part of valor was to help her, since she was so obviously not getting what airbnb is about. Unfortunately her rudeness continued, and I found out that she actually hung up on the very nice person who was there to help her with a booking that would be a match for her family. She found the cancellation button thankfully.


I did find out from the airbnb helpline that there will be more transparency in the booking in regards to who will be staying including # adults, # children 2 and up, #"babies" 2 and younger, and pets. It sounds like "babies" don't count toward your house limit and therefore are not counted in the charge or tally. I'd be fine with one and under but most 12+ months are on the serious crawl or march for every-any-thing! 😉


Level 10
Berlin, DE


good to see Airbnb will hopefully start to re-confirm the number of guests once a guest put an actual booking in.

Have an experience happening right now.  A seasoned Airbnb family puts in a request for one person.  I politely go back and ask if it is an oversight.  Then within a minute i get the response, of we are paying enough as it is, can´t you just skip it.

So this tells me some guests intentionally do this and obviously other hosts have accepted it.

I am in the right mind to not accept the booking.  I have asked them to pay the additional small fee.  Let´s see.




I certainly hope you stand your ground.  Their response is a red flag for me.  They have obviously not read your house rule, "Absolutely no more guests permitted to stay than what have been booked for."


"Can we just smoke one cigarrette a day inside?"



Superhost Ambassador ~ Host Club Community Leader ~ Community Expert ~ Experienced Co-Host

@Dave-and-Deb0 i declined the booking request.  From her profile she is a seasoned Airbnb guest so i was pretty sure she knew what she was doing even though she advised it was not intentional.  After i declined the booking advising her it was not a good start to the booking relationship she sent this final message.  We were both polite and that was that.


I understand and respect your decision. It was not intentional, and I haven't had such strict hosts in the past. I'm open to discussion, or waiving additional person fees, which is why I asked. Again, I understand your perspective. All the best.

Level 2
New Jersey, United States

My listing accommodates 4 people.

someone made a reservation for 2 adults for 3 days.  

After the reservation was confirmed, the guest wrote and asked if 2 more people could come.

i know I can accommodate 4, but the request was for 2.

 Just don't like it.  What do you think?

There seems to be more of this happening. Booking for 2 and then the numbers climb. Make sure that you register that more are coming and how much........or refuse point blank until they complete the correct numbers on the site.

Level 2
Louisville, KY

Excelent comment. I also think Airbrb should state very clearly- if shows up more guests then the number at the reservation, a extra charge will be done at the checkout. 


Level 1
Montreal, Canada

Hello,  I few weeks ago I had a reservation for 10 persons and they happen to be 11.  Before I notice the amount of guests our relation was happy, I help them organize there trip in the city with a map showing them all the best ways to travel in the city, and so on.  There was one person extra that I notice before leaving the appartment, when I told them that they will need to pay an extra charge for this payment they were not happy and turned the problem to my side instead of admitting.... I felt bad and as per your comments I end up having a bad review, with quality price of 2 stars....

I agree with your suggestion of modifying the amount of guests to make it clear to the customers.

thanks for this good subject, 


Level 1

Agree completley with the suggestion. My guest, five days out, is trying to add one adult and two children to the reservation. My apartment is NOT child friendly and it is not at all suited for five people (in total). If I say no they are going to either show up anyway OR they are going to sneak them in after my host leaves. And I cannot cancel the reservation without penalty. And, no, critiqueing them on the AirBnB community is not enough. I simply do not want that many people/children in my house. How do I proceed?

If you clearly state in your House Rules on Airbnb "Not suitable for children" You can cancel the reservation without penalty as the person is not agreeing to your terms and rules.

I am having this exact problem, my guest booked for ten, then asked for extra beds, I assumed this was because there were a number of singles in the group. I've now discovered there are twelve and they wish to change the number to fourteen????my house is large, and people could sleep in couches, but realistically it's an awful lot of wear and tear!!!
Level 1
Portorož, Slovenia

yes I totally agree, this is my problem right now. And I  am looking for an airbnb rule under terms and conditions but no luck. tnx guys for the help 🙂

Their site states you can turn them away and also that AB&B isn't responsible for damages cost by an extra guest. I am tempted to copy and paste this onto my house rules.