At some point in all our travels, we are lucky enough to receive an invitation to stay with friends or family on our travels. We all appreciate being invited, but how do we show that to our hosts? I am sure most of my readers already practice good habits of being a good house guest, but maybe you know someone you can share these with. Here are five tips to showing your appreciation to your hosts.
1. Bring a Gift – I was taught this from an early age. You never go to a party or visit someone without bringing a gift. If you are staying at someone’s house, bring a gift that is thoughtful and practical, if possible. Last summer I stayed with a friend and his family, which included 4 of his children and an exchange student, so I brought scones for breakfast and a bottle of wine for his wife! The gift doesn’t have to be expensive, just a sign of appreciation.
2. Clean Up After Yourself – I hope this is a given! You are not staying at a hotel, and your hosts should not have to pick up after you. Make your bed, hang up your towels and wipe down the sink every day.
3. Offer to Help – This is beyond cleaning up after yourself. Offer to help cook, take out the trash or watch kids or pets. They may not take you up on it, but not offering is rude. You host is probably still having to go to work or carry on with their daily lives while you visit. You are staying for free after all!
4. Give Them Space – Your host is not a hotel operator and probably would appreciate some alone time. Go to your room and read or go for a walk. Do not invade their personal time the entire time you visit.
5. Send a Thank You Note – This seems to be a fading art. The thank you note can be an email or snail mail but send something. We all like getting mail, and it helps tell them how much you appreciate them taking the time to share their home and time with you.
Do you have any tips for being a good house guest? Please share in the comments!