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How much personal info do you share with your guests?

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JBloggs

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Do you share info like when someone has the flu inyour family with your guests?
I certainly don't.
I might later on when they are gone, but I don't want to dampen their stay with something negative or make them fearful of catching it. It is a fine line as people are in our homes and they expect to know things, they expect to be paying for YOU and YOUR TIME. I don't understand this concept,as I do not wish to have ownership in the hosts, I just want the B&B.
When you have a young family you treasure any privacy you can have. That includes private matters like sick children.
 

Don Draper

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Believe me, it's not limited to having a young family. I am protective of my DOG's privacy, and absolutely rabid about mine and my spouse's. We try not to share any private details unless absolutely necessary (like we have a family member dying in the hospital so we will not be here this afternoon, here is our cell number if you need anything). Other than that I just don't think it's any of their business.
They are paying for a BED and BREAKFAST...nowhere in there does it say they get me OR my time...my rates would be $500/night if I was offering that up.
I think it's time to stop worrying about what any one person "expects"...they all have VASTLY different expectations and we are not mind readers. We offer what we offer, we make it clear what we offer on our websites, and that's the end. They can take it or leave it. If you do have exceptional circumstances that will affect your ability to offer what you NORMALLY do, then maybe it's worth saying something...but you still don't have to get specific.
 

JBloggs

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Believe me, it's not limited to having a young family. I am protective of my DOG's privacy, and absolutely rabid about mine and my spouse's. We try not to share any private details unless absolutely necessary (like we have a family member dying in the hospital so we will not be here this afternoon, here is our cell number if you need anything). Other than that I just don't think it's any of their business.
They are paying for a BED and BREAKFAST...nowhere in there does it say they get me OR my time...my rates would be $500/night if I was offering that up.
I think it's time to stop worrying about what any one person "expects"...they all have VASTLY different expectations and we are not mind readers. We offer what we offer, we make it clear what we offer on our websites, and that's the end. They can take it or leave it. If you do have exceptional circumstances that will affect your ability to offer what you NORMALLY do, then maybe it's worth saying something...but you still don't have to get specific..
Don Draper said:
They are paying for a BED and BREAKFAST...nowhere in there does it say they get me OR my time...my rates would be $500/night if I was offering that up.
I think it's time to stop worrying about what any one person "expects"...they all have VASTLY different expectations and we are not mind readers. We offer what we offer, we make it clear what we offer on our websites, and that's the end.
Good reply, thanks.
I think reviews make it harder on us, when guests enjoy their visit and compliment the hosts in a nice review, then the next set of guests think they must have got something extra special and want that from the hosts as well. When one guests adores the privacy and alone time another wants interaction.
As you can tell I am on my "You didn't hire me by the hour" thing again.
 

Country Girl

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I think it depends on the guest and the situation. We keep a few family photos on our piano and some guests want to know who they are and that starts a dialog of our family, and theirs. It's always a pleasant back and forth dialog with bits of information about parents, children, siblings, etc. I think it makes the guests feel like they are staying with good friends and gives a more home-like experience to their stay. It's the same when they meet our golden retriever. Guests love her. But I NEVER share personal or private information.
 

Alibi Ike

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If my time & attention were divided because I had a sick child I would let the guests know that I was attending to a child with a cold. (Not too many people fear a cold.) I have done that when the SO was sick in bed. Walk out of the kitchen with a covered plate of food and say, 'He's down for the count, excuse me while I build up his defenses with some breakfast.'
Then I make a big show of washing my hands when I come back.
Here's why- it is the personal nature of this business. I'm not running a chain hotel. These folks are in my home. As such, they are expecting a little more from me than they do from the nameless clerk at the front desk. I look at it as managing guest expectations. Give them a reason for me being distracted and they won't think I'm standoffish or that I don't want them around.
OR, you could all just think I'm an over-sharer. Heck, you all know what I say here!
My wall between me and the guests is the door to my apt. When I'm on their side of that door, I'm there. When I'm on my side of the door they can shift for themselves.
 

Don Draper

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If my time & attention were divided because I had a sick child I would let the guests know that I was attending to a child with a cold. (Not too many people fear a cold.) I have done that when the SO was sick in bed. Walk out of the kitchen with a covered plate of food and say, 'He's down for the count, excuse me while I build up his defenses with some breakfast.'
Then I make a big show of washing my hands when I come back.
Here's why- it is the personal nature of this business. I'm not running a chain hotel. These folks are in my home. As such, they are expecting a little more from me than they do from the nameless clerk at the front desk. I look at it as managing guest expectations. Give them a reason for me being distracted and they won't think I'm standoffish or that I don't want them around.
OR, you could all just think I'm an over-sharer. Heck, you all know what I say here!
My wall between me and the guests is the door to my apt. When I'm on their side of that door, I'm there. When I'm on my side of the door they can shift for themselves..
Alibi Ike said:
Here's why- it is the personal nature of this business. I'm not running a chain hotel. These folks are in my home. As such, they are expecting a little more from me than they do from the nameless clerk at the front desk. I look at it as managing guest expectations. Give them a reason for me being distracted and they won't think I'm standoffish or that I don't want them around.
This is exactly what I mean...there are many ways to be personable without being overly personal.
 

Samster

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Very little day to day personal info was shared. We also only had a few family photos in the common areas (older photos that are more in keeping with the house). The guests got a fair amount of info when they asked - how we came here, the house renovation, why my dh was not around most of the time...the list goes on. But there's a line where my privacy is important to me.
If I thought the guests were being grumpy and acting like their experience was not the best because I was distracted, I might share something...but it would not be the details.
 

Alibi Ike

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If my time & attention were divided because I had a sick child I would let the guests know that I was attending to a child with a cold. (Not too many people fear a cold.) I have done that when the SO was sick in bed. Walk out of the kitchen with a covered plate of food and say, 'He's down for the count, excuse me while I build up his defenses with some breakfast.'
Then I make a big show of washing my hands when I come back.
Here's why- it is the personal nature of this business. I'm not running a chain hotel. These folks are in my home. As such, they are expecting a little more from me than they do from the nameless clerk at the front desk. I look at it as managing guest expectations. Give them a reason for me being distracted and they won't think I'm standoffish or that I don't want them around.
OR, you could all just think I'm an over-sharer. Heck, you all know what I say here!
My wall between me and the guests is the door to my apt. When I'm on their side of that door, I'm there. When I'm on my side of the door they can shift for themselves..
Alibi Ike said:
Here's why- it is the personal nature of this business. I'm not running a chain hotel. These folks are in my home. As such, they are expecting a little more from me than they do from the nameless clerk at the front desk. I look at it as managing guest expectations. Give them a reason for me being distracted and they won't think I'm standoffish or that I don't want them around.
This is exactly what I mean...there are many ways to be personable without being overly personal.
.
Right. I wouldn't go into detail about HOW sick the kid was (or the SO), no one needs that info! But definitely explain why I was distracted. It was amazing when I did this how guests reacted. Some guests said there was no need to clean their rooms, others asked if I needed anything from the store while they were out. Another time, when it wasn't sickness that knocked SO out, one guest wanted to know if I wanted him to keep SO occupied while I did the chores! Actually wanted to sit up with him! (Maybe figured he had a captive audience that way, I don't know!)
I do know that when I had to be out of town for almost 2 weeks with a parent in hospital, SO told everyone where I was. I got emails asking how the parent was doing? Was everything OK? From guests I never even met. And those guests let SO off the hook for anything that was not 'perfect'. (Plus not having to clean their rooms!)
 

gillumhouse

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I do not think I shared much about DH when he had his 6-way and was in M-town for about 7 weeks. I had a LOT of guests during that time period. It is almost 4 years ago now. The guest who was here when he said take me to ER asked about him in the AM (and as requested left his breakfast time for me on a card on the stairs) and that was about it. In times like that the English part of my ethnicity comes out - the stiff upper lip.
I maintain all of our hodgepodge (that I know about) gave me the best of their traits - from the English, stiff upper lip in the face of adversity; the Irish, my sense of humor; the Germans, my good cooking ability; the Scots, my fiduciary ability (OK CHEAP);everyone knows what the Swedes are good at....
No, I am not going to tell all to strangers but what I do share depends on the conversation and that guest. I get asked often, shyly, if DH was hurt in the war (pick one) and I tell them he had polio and now has post-polio syndrome. It is a fact of life and I move on to something else after saying it has rarely kept him from doing whatever he wanted to do. I do better as a hard-nose than receiving sympathy. THAT is something I do not handle well.
 

Joey Camb

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I don't mind what I call the normal questions ie have you been here long? etc renovations and that sort of thing but would never talk about private or family stuff. Luckily we don't get sick very often and usually it is when we have stopped to take a break that we clap out.
 
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