8 simple etiquette for being a better guest

Florence Uwaeme

We all may have been guests at one point or the other in our lives. Whether we like it or not, there are usually unsaid rules that guide every body’s house. So to be better guests, it is advised you adhere to these 8 simple etiquettes that will help you become a better guest.

  1.  When you're being housed for free, you must understand that not many people are infinitely nice. Sooner or later, you'll cross a line you never knew was there and the negativity begins. To avoid this, ask your host(s) what's expected of you: Curfew, household chores, etc.
  2.   Except otherwise stated by your host, do not eat the last piece or portion of the meal in the kitchen. If you want to eat an apple and there's just one left, let it go. If there's one more piece of meat left in the pot, do not touch it.
  3.  Contribute to the upkeep of the home, no matter how small. The only reason for not contributing to the purchase of grocery in the house should be that you're dead broke. If not, as much as you can afford to, buy things that the home needs and then extra if you can.
  4.  Respect your host's space and do not go around snooping. You shouldn't be going through anyone's things, it is highly disrespectful. At the very least, you will have broken the trust of the person whose privacy you invaded. No one wants to willingly live with trust issues.
  5.  Try saying a SINCERE thank you more often to your host. If you let someone know how much you appreciate what he or she has done for you, they are far more likely to continue to do it. If you don't, they may think you have not noticed or are taking it for granted.
  6.  Watch out for your hosts' idiosyncrasies: If you catch them turning off the lights at every opportunity, do the same. If the generator doesn't come on before 7 PM, don't turn it on-without permission- before 7 Pm. Be mindful of the silent rules.
  7.  If you begin to feel resentful and you can't leave -especially when feelings have been hurt- talk with your host. Be honest about how you feel, apologise where you're wrong and ask for a better way to live more amicably.
  8.  You may do some of these things and you're still made to feel uncomfortable. This means you have overstayed your welcome. Yes, the host may be wrong on so many levels but what can you do really?