Tuesday, April 16, 2024
For men, women, and teens

The Busy Person’s Guide to Making House Guests Feel Welcome

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Written by Vera C. Last updated on .

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Room ready for house guest

If you are a busy person, having house guests can seem extra-daunting. Here are some quick, easy ways you can make your house welcoming, even you won’t necessarily be able to spend plenty of time with your guests because of work commitments.

As an added bonus, these simple ways to welcome your house guests are inexpensive and won’t break your budget. Equally importantly, these ideas won’t turn your home upside down! These ideas send the simple but heartwarming message to your guests that you are thinking of them.

1. Hallway Night-Light

While your house guests will (presumably!) be grown-up enough not to need a night-light in their room, it’s very helpful to put one in the hallway or corridor outside their room. This is so that they can get to the bathroom in the middle of the night without bumping into furniture or walls. House guests will be very grateful for your thoughtfulness when this crops up!

Night-lights take special small bulbs (at least in the US) which are available very cheaply in packs in supermarkets and grocery stores. One night-light bulb will last a really long time. Some night lights even have a sensor and automatically switch off if there’s plenty of light in the area e.g. during daytime.

These are the night lights we use when we have guests, and they've been working out perfectly.

2. Compact, Battery-Powered Alarm Clock

A surprisingly large number of people don’t travel with an alarm clock of any sort. Although cellphones work beautifully as alarm clocks...

  • There are some guests who may have forgotten to pack their charger and therefore will want to turn off their cellphone overnight
  • Overseas guests might not wish to have their cellphones turned on for long periods if subject to roaming charges
  • If you live in a rural area you may not necessarily have good coverage on the cellphone provider your guest subscribes to

A compact battery-powered alarm clock won’t take up valuable space or clash with your guest room decor, unlike a clock radio. Choose one with an easily replaceable battery, like a double A or triple A.

You will be especially grateful for the guest room alarm clock if you have to drop off a guest at the airport for an early morning flight. Speaking from experience, this is a time when you are scarcely going to be functional enough to get yourself together, let alone have to go in and wake up your house guest!

3. Guest Towels

It’s best to keep two towel sets especially dedicated to guests, if you can. That way, house guests can always be assured of having a fluffy, comfortable towel in non-faded colors, and this is certain to be appreciated when they are showering.

Also, it helps you by not needing to worry whether the towels are in the laundry pile – with dedicated guest towels, you will always have them ready to go for house guests, even if you didn't have much warning.

4. Coffee-Table Book

A large hardcover book pertaining to the region is very helpful to have on hand. Place it either on your coffee table in the living room, or in the guest room. That way, guests always have something to do in those odd moments here and there.

The book needn’t necessarily outline any of the attractions in your area, but it should have plenty of pictures that let the reader get a feel for the area and hopefully learn something. For example, if you live in the Southwest, a book about cacti and desert plants will be intriguing to someone who isn’t familiar with the area. In any location, a book about local birds or plants is ideal. Alternatively, go for local cultural heritage, local architecture or local history. Just make sure it has large photographs and is inviting to the reader. There is no need to buy this type of book – your local library will almost certainly have a good selection to choose from that you can borrow with your library card.


Regardless of how much or how little time you will be able to spend with your house guests, these easy, inexpensive ideas will show your guests they are welcome and will leave them feeling cared-for.

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