Life Advice



Ask Amy: Flustered hosts seek rules for houseguests

By Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

Dear Amy: Recently, we hosted a couple as weekend guests. The wife and my wife were friends in college.

I picked them up at the airport on Friday afternoon and brought them to our house, showed them to the guest room, and we all sat down to the dinner that my wife had prepared.

On Saturday, after breakfast they spent the day with some friends of theirs, and returned to our house for another homecooked meal.

On Sunday, our guests suggested that we go to a nice restaurant for dinner, which we did. During dinner they ordered and drank a $40 bottle of wine. My wife and I don't drink.

When the waiter placed the check on the table, nobody moved for a few seconds. I thought, "Does he expect me to pick that up?" Finally, he said, "Hey, buddy, whaddaya say we split the check?"

I wanted to say, "No, I don't want to split the check. I want you to pay for all the food, the wine, the tip, and the tax," but not wanting to make a scene, I mumbled, "OK."


On Monday, we drove them back to the airport. They thanked us for the weekend, but never sent an email or a thank you note.

My question is: What are roles and responsibilities of houseguests and hosts?

-- Disgruntled Host

Dear Disgruntled: A good houseguest brings a small gift to present to the host upon their arrival. They express interest in their surroundings and enthusiasm for any plans the host has made.


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