unregistered quests

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Laurie705
Level 2
Moreland, GA

unregistered quests

We are fairly new hosts, have a 2b/2b house and host up to 6 guests. However, repeatedly, we are experiencing extra unregistered quests staying overnight!  We know this bc we have a motion camera in the driveway snd can see when and what cars and people enter and leave our house. Frankly, we are surprised that this seems to be a pattern of abuse…5 star guest doing this. What can be done?? It is such an uncomfortable thing to confront a guest with. I wrote in our house rules : Any unregistered guest that stays overnight is $25 each per night fee. This doesn’t seem to make any difference.  Then I have to chase down the $25 fee and they don’t pay. Help!! What should we do??  Thank you in advance. 

1 Best Answer

Two different scenarios.

 

No problem with charging according to how many come, up to the maximum number. We ourselves have this model: 2-6 price range, after 2 extra persons pay $100 per night/per person; to a maximum of 6. If 10 show up even if their intentions is to pay, it is still a problem because we do not want nor can handle 10 guests. Sometimes when they have 1-2 extra and ask respectably and up front, we accommodate them without hesitation.

 

This case is one that the guest not only exceeded the maximum allowed but was sly about it - which shows ill intent. Which leads to conflict, which leads to Airbnb getting involved, etc etc.

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14 Replies 14
Fred13
Level 10
Placencia, Belize

Maybe keep a few things in mind: 

1. You have a 2 bedroom home, why not make it 4 people max (maybe with the exception of a family when there are kids). The more people allowed, the higher call for control.

2. Do not depend on a camera, find a way to be able to see first hand if your maximum is being respected.

3. Try your best to not get into a confrontation with a crafty guest, they will turn right around and bring up the existence of a camera the minute you mention it, in a sinister way to retaliate if you get in a confrontation with them.

4. By charging for extras ("Any unregistered guest that stays overnight is $25 each per night fee"), it turns your maximum into being 'flexible', so the hustling guest will exceed your maximum and then contend their intention was to pay extra all along (if caught that is).

5. Common occurrence: when cameras are mentioned the issue then is where they were declared or not, how were they used, investigation by Airbnb, temporary pause > a royal mess.

 

Moral of the story: If people are successfully sneaking in it means you do not have full control over your property. This may create problems, sooner or later.

 

Good luck.

Helen744
Level 10
Victoria, Australia

@Laurie705 Laurie your place is lovely. One thing you must do is put extra guest fees in all the time after the first two guests . Also no bookings to under 25s , no parties. When the guest confirms then immediately ask them if they have read your rules? If you receive no reply then use the phone number provided and ring them , 'to confirm both the booking and numbers and to ascertain if the guest is receiving messages , as this is important for both your safety and the guests' . ask at this juncture for id as Airbnb do not pass on ID to you ' and Laurie it is always a good idea to meet your guests in person to run them over the details of the home  or have a co host do this. Tell them that this is something you do when you have not had them stay before,.Put all messages on the message app , the same as on the phone .Check previous reviews and verify people. If you are using Instant book then maybe do not do so, until you are a little more confident about questioning and communicating,with guests about rules, charges etcetera. It is always easier to send a guest a variation of guest numbers  before or during a stay and virtually impossible to do this after they have gone.. good luck .. H

@Laurie705 Now I wouldn't follow @Helen744 's advice. I would price based on your max occupancy (so no chasing extra fees from additional guests' and then state any additional guests will cause the stay to be terminated. I agree with @Fred13 any additional fees/fines will encourage people to try it on.

@Mike -and -Jane0 extra fees for guests over two Mike ,are a standard feature and used by many hosts but have little bearing on deterring or encouraging extra guests . They have little to do with encouraging non paying guests , they in fact act as a deterrent and shown up front, where our hosting should always be, allow guests to vary their numbers within , of course , the maximum allowed in the house.Having the extra fees clearly stated also allows the host  , if they know one extra guest over the registered number has arrived and appears to be of the party , to be easily checked in with no unpleasantness .This is a completely different scenario to an unliscenced party , but I do not think that is the case for @Laurie705 who is of course allowed to follow any advice she so wishes to at any time . There are many tools in the hosts kit and different people can and do use different ones . .H

Two different scenarios.

 

No problem with charging according to how many come, up to the maximum number. We ourselves have this model: 2-6 price range, after 2 extra persons pay $100 per night/per person; to a maximum of 6. If 10 show up even if their intentions is to pay, it is still a problem because we do not want nor can handle 10 guests. Sometimes when they have 1-2 extra and ask respectably and up front, we accommodate them without hesitation.

 

This case is one that the guest not only exceeded the maximum allowed but was sly about it - which shows ill intent. Which leads to conflict, which leads to Airbnb getting involved, etc etc.

Thank you Fred, this make sense…we have a $10 for guest over 4 but perhaps should change it to more.  We are new to hosting and out of 5 bookings, 3 have  had unregistered guests and have done so slyly!  And when I text them through Airbnb, they do not respond.  It is baffling bc if they would ask respectfully and communicate, it would make all the difference to us. 
Will changing our house rules to ‘No unregistered guests allowed to stay overnight’ make any difference to crafty guest??  

Our security camera is a Ring and notifies us whenever there is  a person on our long driveway and it’s view encompasses the front walkway and front door. We have disclosed this on the Airbnb site with specific location.  How do guest use this against us?  
Appreciate your experienced advise. Thank you so much! 

@Laurie705 I would maybe suggest that if these guests are not answering communications promptyly that extra up front communication Before they arrive will help here. communicate communicate communicate.Take extra time to really question guest numbers long before they arrive and establish that your guests must 'answer all ' communications during their stay from the host, otherwise you will need to come down and check. I am not sure how far you are from the property , but as Fred13 has remarked using cameras to establish guest numbers could lead to arbitrary suspension of your listing and the possibility of having to refund as Airbnb takes guests 'privacy ' very seriously. the house appears to be a little isolated also, which could be leading to guests believing no one is around , so it is super important to make your presence 'known' and leave your phone number printed on the fridge and possibly your pic as well.Do you use a 'co host' to show people around or who can be a back up for emergencies. This also can be posted in the house. Its really all about folk knowing that their is an owner who cares for and values their property and is available at short notice.if the house is not isolated then maybe show this in one of the pics... H

The point about cameras is that the instant they are raised with Airbnb, they do require a response by them (maybe a matter of liability law) and Lord knows they are not super fast about it.

 

On extra guests two interesting realities: The guest doesn't gets to decide on their own if more guest are allowed, you do. Also 99% of any problem we have had comes from > the extra guests. Why we suspect they are the invitees, probably never bother to have read the description or is not their responsibility if things go wrong. Besides they are not who made the reservation, but the one that did is now most interested in splitting the bill. So if you going to allow them: you must know it before the reservation starts and charge them, charge them well.

also Laurie your 'extra guest' fee is not as such an 'unregistered guest fee', Many people have an extra friend , cousin , nephew , niece ,etcetera who just happened to turn up and it is easy enough to do a number variation , while greeting the guests and ask them to accept it. It is not a fine or a punishment. It is not needed or used generally by those who host in home but is generally employed by people who host six people specifically,in a two or three bedroom house, because otherwise the temptation of guests to book only for two and sneak in extra guests is too great. So if you ever see only two on your booking , then ask if that is all the guests wishing to stay, as the house does accommodate six people generally and suggest that there are other places nearby more suitable for two guests ..H

Kia272
Level 10
Takoma Park, MD

@Laurie705  Never "ring" your guests as another poster suggested. Keep all messaging on the AirBnB platform. 

 

The advice that @Fred13 has given you is good.

 

Guests need to understand that their stay will be TERMINATED if they don't follow your house rules. It's as simple as that. It's your property and your rules, and guests need to respect that or leave. 

Bhumika
Community Manager
Community Manager
Toronto, Canada

Hi @Laurie705 , 

 

Did you eventually reach out to the guests regarding extra guests or request extra fees?

 

I hope other members' advice has helped you make an informed decision! However, I wanted to share these articles that outline similar instances and what to do in such cases: When guests want to bring more people and Add an extra guest fee.

 

Do keep us updated on how it is going for you. 

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Please follow the Community Guidelines

Hello, Thank you for sending those articles…helpful! 
so I changed my house rules and auto responders to say that NO unregistered guests allowed overnight and please if you haven’t done so already, register ALL guest through Airbnb.  
Also, we updated our added guest over 4 to $25 each. 

it’s such a shame that we need to resort to higher extra guest fees but our place can’t accommodate more than 6 adults comfortably. And this unregistered guest issue seems to be reoccurring often. (Surprisingly) 

Catherine3396
Level 1
Mombasa, Kenya

I have had such an experience recently, honestly,how does one deal with it? 

Hi @Laurie705 

 

Agree with the other suggestions here. I have found it's best to try and prevent guests from bringing unregistered guests before they arrive (if possible). It's a real headache to deal with after the fact.

 

Minimum Stay

A minimum stay of 2 nights; expecially in the summer or on weekends (Fri/Sat). This might discourage unregistered guests. You can keep mid-week 1 day min stay by using Rule Sets.

 

House Rules

I would add an actual fine amount ($100) in House Rules for unregistered guests or unapproved day visitors. This is a discentive and encourages the guest to just pay your lower addl guest fee.

 

Booking Confirmation Message & Check-in Message

I would add a paragraph to your Booking message that states the number of guests on the confirmation, followed by a statement that only guests listed on the reservation may be on property. I would also add simillar wording to your check-in message. This provides 2, written messages on the platform advising that unregistered guests are not permitted. I would also state that day visitors are not permitted without prior Host approval. 

 

If they still have unregistered guests or unapproved day visitiors, then you can charge them the fine amount mentioned in your House Rules and you should not have a problem collecting. Of course, I would try to get the guest to send a reservation alteration with the addl guests first. If they refuse or ignore you, then you can send an alteration request to them. If they don't accept it, you now will have to charge them the fine of $100 (be sure its listed as $100/unregistered guest per night in your House Rules). Be aware that if you charge them the fine, you most likely get a negative review. Then go to Airbnb to get that review removed as retaliatory as the broke a House Rule.