Whether your guests are sleeping in the guest room, on an airbed, or on the sofa make them feel comfortable with easy access to the basic necessities:
- Leave your guests a nightstand or other surface on which to gather their jewelry, books, etc. (If guests are sleeping on a mattress or airbed on the floor, consider leaving a large tray next to the bed, instead of a table.)
- Make sure guests have easy-access to an outlet so that they can charge cell phones and other electronic devices without hunting for a plug.
- Ideally, guests should be able to turn off the lights without getting out of bed. If your guests are staying in the living room or other shared space, be sure to provide them with lighting that is close by, and consider using nightlights in the hallways and bathrooms so that guests don't stumble in the dark.
- Tell guests where they can find extra blankets and pillows, and keep the extras nearby.
- Providing an alarm clock is also nice for guests. A combination radio or iPod alarm clock also gives guests the ability to listen to music during their stay.
Organizing supplies before your guests arrive will ensure that everyone has the towels and toiletries they need.
- Leaving a set of towels and washcloths on a guest's bed gives them the freedom to bathe in the morning or evening without having to ask for linens.
- Consider creating a bathroom basket with travel-sized toiletries and items guests may have forgotten, such as toothbrushes, combs, and hairspray. You may also want to create a small basket for the guest room with things like cough drops, earplugs, an inexpensive eye mask, and other things that will help your guests feel at home.
- All homes have quirks. If the knobs in your shower are backwards or you have to jiggle the toilet handle for a proper flush, be sure to warn your guests in advance to prevent embarrassing situations. It's also helpful to point out where to find extra toilet paper or a plunger, should anyone need them.
Providing a comfortable place for visitors to read, watch television, or hang out is a necessity, as is showing guests where they can find food or drinks when they need them.
- Leave a basket in a common area with games, magazines, and other forms of entertainment and encourage your guests to help themselves.
- Orient guests to the kitchen and show them where to find snacks, water, coffee, dishes, etc. (This is especially important if your guests are early risers and you like to sleep in!)
- Provide guests with a channel guide for the television, instructions to work the remote controls, and maps or local guidebooks if your guests will be doing any exploring without you.