Guest Rooms

I do a lot of traveling, and I’ve stayed in a variety of accommodations, from fancy hotels (when I volunteered to take a later flight and the airline put me up) to cheap, old (“quaint”) motels. Many times I stay with locals—longtime friends or gracious hosts who soon become friends.

With the holiday season coming up, you may be anticipating (or dreading) having overnight guests in your home. If you’re wondering what you can do to make their stay comfortable, consider this checklist I’ve come up with, based on my experiences as a guest.

For the Bathroom:

  • Extra toilet paper (preferably within reach while “seated”)
  • Cup or glass for brushing teeth
  • Two wash cloths (one for face, one for shower)
  • Two hand towels (one for face, one to wipe the counter)
  • One bath towel
  • Bath mat
  • Tissues
  • Wastebasket
  • Shampoo, conditioner, and soap or shower gel
  • Reasonably bright lighting (for putting on makeup)
  • Nightlight
  • Place to put toiletries: back of toilet, if flat, or counter. (Decorations are lovely, but can be kind of a bother if they take up all the counter space.)

For the Bedroom:

  • Electrical outlet near the bed
  • Bedside table for phone, water, watch, glasses, etc.
  • Clock to tell time (set to the correct time zone)
  • Tissues
  • Wastebasket
  • Place to hang clothes (and empty hangars)
  • Dark curtains (especially nice if guests want to sleep past dawn, or if you have bright street lights)

Pleasant Extras:

  • Coffee or hot water and an assortment of teabags, sugar, and artificial sweetener (including Stevia)
  • A notice (written or verbal) if your guest needs to keep the bathroom and/or bedroom door closed to keep pets from raiding the trash or marking their territory on suitcases

If you really want to spoil your guests (the ones you actually want to return), provide some light but inspirational reading material in the bedroom and/or bathroom. A seasonal devotional such as 21 Days of Christmas perhaps? If you have guests who are writers or editors, perhaps a copy of Proofreading Secrets of Best-Selling Authors?

Are you expecting guests this holiday season? Anything on this list you want to be sure to provide (that maybe you hadn’t thought of)? What do you do for your guests (or have had hosts provide for you) that’s not on the list? After all, I’m going to have holiday guests myself and would appreciate suggestions!