50 Tips For Hosting Overnight Holiday Guests

by Julie Cohn
Tips for Hosting Overnight Guests2

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The holidays are coming and if you are like most families, you will probably end up with a house full of overnight guests.  Most guests are fine, but guests + holidays can = lots of stress. You know what I am talking about, right?  Remember the “famous” Griswald family Christmas?  Unexpected guests, unforeseen problems, and too much togetherness can throw the holidays into a tizzy.  Don’t panic, just follow my epic list of 50 tips for hosting overnight holiday guests.  While you are here, enter to win a fun holiday prize!


{This post contains affiliate links.  My opinions are my own.}


Tips For Hosting Overnight Holiday Guests

If you are like me, you want everything to be perfect for the holidays, especially when you have guests. With these tips and a little planning, you can be prepared for (almost) everything and create a comfy space for guests.  You might even have the “hap hap happiest” holiday ever!  (Yes, I did quote Clark Griswald.)

Tips for Hosting Overnight Guests10

The Guest Room

  1. Make sure guest areas are tidy.  If you don’t have time to clean, hire a cleaning service.
  2. Use your best sheets and blankets on guest beds, even if it’s an air mattress. They don’t have to be new, just clean.
  3. Don’t use an air mattress.  Memory foam mattresses are comfy and inexpensive.  My son has this one and loves it.
  4. Keep a throw at the end of the bed for chilly nights.
  5. Pile 2-3 pillows of different firmness on the bed (per person) so guests can choose.
  6. Put a sturdy luggage rack in the corner or closet for guests to put their suitcase on. This one has a shelf for shoes.
  7. Have clean drawer and/or closet space (with hangers) available.
  8. Set out fresh flowers (unless your guests are allergic).
  9. A bedside lamp with USB outlet or USB-charging station is a nice touch.
  10. Print out the Wi-Fi code on a piece of paper and place in an old picture frame on the dresser.
  11. Set out a bed tray with water bottles and a few snacks.
  12. If you can afford it, have a television in the guest room so guests can watch their favorite shows.
  13. Place a few magazines and/or books on the nightstand for bedtime reading.
  14. A storage ottoman makes a great sitting bench at the end of the bed and to store extra blankets.




The Guest Bath

  1. Place a basket with trial size toiletries, including toothbrush, razor, dental floss, and shampoo on the counter.
  2. Set out an extra pile of fluffy clean bath towels.
  3. Keep a first aid kit in the bathroom cabinet.
  4. Make certain shower curtain and bath rugs are clean and fresh.
  5. Make certain shower drains are clear and faucets are in working order.
  6. Have extra toilet paper, tissues, and bars of soap available under the sink. 
  7. Keep a (clean) plunger and can of bathroom freshener next to the guest toilet.
  8. Keep a few vanity jars with cotton swabs, cotton balls, and fancy soaps on the counter.
  9. Place a few cleaning supplies under the sink for quick freshening up.
  10. Set a large wicker hamper in the corner for dirty clothing and towels.
  11. If you guests stay more then four days (God bless you) set out fresh towels or wash the old ones.
  12. Keep an extra hair dryer in the bathroom for guest use.
  13. Don’t put a weight scale in the bathroom.  Your guests are on vacation and everything you make is zero calories.

The Kitchen

  1. Find out dietary restrictions/likes & dislikes before your guests arrive, so you can accommodate special diets.
  2. Set the coffee maker on automatic and have mugs, tea bags, sugar, and creamer ready to go each morning.
  3. Stock up on groceries before guests arrive so you are not running to the store fifty times.
  4. Have bagels, muffins, cereal, and fresh fruit ready so guests can help themselves in the morning.
  5. Keep a basket of granola bars, fruit, nuts, and pretzels on the counter for help-yourself snacking.
  6. Make and freeze a few casseroles and soups ahead of time for easy gourmet dinners.
  7. The slow cooker is your friend when you have guests.  Prepare a few easy meals in the crock pot.
  8. Arrange extra seating in advance to accommodate all guests.
  9. Keep an extra tablecloth handy in case of spills.
  10. Polish silver and clean stemware until they are sparkling before guests arrive.
  11. Cheese, crackers, and nuts make a easy (no work) appetizer.
  12. If your guest is a good cook, ask if they would like to make a favorite dish.  Most are flattered to be asked.
  13. Stock your your cocktail/wine bar before guests arrive, including mixers. Have a few kid friendly cocktails too.
  14. Keep a secret stash of chocolate (or vodka) to treat yourself. Adulting is hard.



  1. Keep a basket of crayons, coloring books, games, and family-friendly DVD’s available for kids.
  2. Make your house pet-friendly with dog bed, bowl, leash, and pet waste bags.
  3. Keep a few board games and playing cards ready for family fun. Charades and Pictionary are perfect for groups.
  4. Include guests in holiday traditions such as trimming the tree or making cookies.
  5. Allow guests to use your laundry room during their visit.
  6. Have a few activities planned, but also allow for down time so no one gets stressed.
  7. Keep a ball or kite handy for outdoor play; if the weather is cold, have a sled, mittens, and hot cocoa ready.
  8. Put together an travel guide with area tourist sites, parks, and family activities so guests can venture out alone.
  9. Take time out for yourself each day, even if it is a walk or 30 minutes of quiet reading. Allow your kids the same.

Which featured product do you like the best?

Congratulations to the winner of the $25 Amazon giveaway, Tanya G! 

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Terry 11/01/2017 at 6:37 pm

You have some really great ideas here to make guest truly feel at home.

Julie Cohn 11/01/2017 at 6:47 pm

Thank you!

Laura 11/03/2017 at 3:04 am

Great list! Bookmarking this


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