How do you usually react to detailed house tours?😄

Hi, guys!
We’ve done ~20 sit during last 8 months and most of the time when we arrive HOs start to explain every detail!
Not about pets!:smile: which would be better actually!
But they make a “big” house tour on how to use the oven, washing machine, dryer, coffee machine, even lights and sometimes toilet :joy:

“Excuse me” is what I wanna say sometimes, but still I can’t find the words that would politely stop HOs on doing that. The only answer I say is “I know-I know”:smiley:

Any ideas? What do you usually do in such situations?


First of all, I make sure we don’t get split up during the tour, otherwise there are mixed messages.

Secondly, once they start to tell us all of the details that you mention, I ask “Is this written down in the Welcome Guide” I tell them that I have already read the WG and it will all become apparent once we start using the appliances.

One thing that I am always grateful for are instructions on how to work the tv as they are all so different and complicated. LIghts can also be complicated - and house alarms.

To summarise - just let them continue with the tour. I actually prefer it when we don’t meet the owners :rofl:


Record it on your mobile to refer to later. This way you don’t need to listen properly.


Sometimes it’s not just a tour and explanations but also “look where we live, aren’t we very lucky”, which I usually Hole heartily agree with.
I think it’s nice to get the grand tour. It gives us an oversight into the home, pets and property then we get the nitty details from the welcome guide. Also, I like to hear the history of the family and property, why they settled there, where they came from, what their family is doing now. We have sat in some very interesting properties with fascinating history and links to famous people.
Another good thing about the tour is if they have forgotten to put the pet food scoop in the cupboard or the dry food is almost empty they can fix it. It’s a way of the home owners making sure everything is where they say it is in the guide.
Roll on the next one.


I let my hosts know if I’m good without the info. Like I don’t need help with a washer, dryer, microwave, etc. I just tell them in a friendly way that I’ve never encountered one I couldn’t figure out and, if I do, I’ll read the instructions they left or google it. Even without the identical model, there are only so many variations.

Indeed! I like it much better when they propose to have a walk together, with the dog(s).


I find it mostly Very helpful and mentally screen out unecessary information so I don’t overload my brain . Also it’s helpful when they share the wi-fi code rather than having to manually put it in - and show you how to open tricky locks / windows and the hiding places that the cat might if they go missing .

I agree some do go over the top - like the HO who randomly showed my husband where he kept all his paint and paint brushes as if we might decide to do some decorating whilst we stayed there :woman_shrugging:t2:. It was a well maintained home - with no decorating required and I can’t imagine the reaction if we had decided to redecorate a room during our stay :scream::rofl:


Ahh, the good old 'welcome to my home - here’s how to lock a door, turn on a light, or find the train station (even though we literally just came from there🤣)

As I said in another thread, we write on our profile what we look for in a handover, but even then hosts often forget or just do what they routinely do with sitters anyway. Which usually means a grand house tour and show of how to use every appliance, how to fit the dog harness (they’re usually all the same!) and how to turn on a shower :upside_down_face:

Oh well, it doesn’t really matter. We just grin and bare it - it’s just part of the the whole ordeal. And of course we do pay attention to anything that’s a bit more fiddly or difficult to use than usual.

However, we do have our limits - we won’t arrive more than 1 night early, and only if it’s actually necessary for an owner’s early morning departure. Otherwise, we’ll arrive in time for a sussinct handover and perhaps a nice meal or cuppa together. We also don’t let owners take us grocery shopping or give us a town tour or anything - we like being independent. Some may like or appreciate the gesture, but we prefer doing our own thing. If they offer, we just politely decline and explain that we travel everywhere, do our own shopping and juse Google Maps. We’ve learnt to be much stricter with this, as most people we sit for are quite a lot older than us and easily slip into the role of parent or mentor, which is really not what we signed up for :laughing:


The shower tour might be useful if it looks like this, LOL. I’ve surprisingly encountered this model twice.


@Nagy26 Showers happen to be what we ask about when sitting in the UK as they vary so much compared to very standard ones in Oz!! We’re all different, aren’t we??


Haha, we tend to endure the tour, but if it gets too long I might say “thanks for everything you have explained so far. I’d really love your help/advice on x (how your cat likes to be patted, does your dog like to play with a ball, etc) and redirect the “tour” to be more about the less obvious things.
I often have to ask to use the bathroom, or for a glass of water, as we walk in the door, some small chit chat and then the tour starts immediately! Hosts forget we are sometimes tired, thirsty and have been on the road for hours.
I’ve also been learning from experienced hosts that they tend to like sitters who don’t message them with too many questions about house stuff. I.e. they just want to enjoy their break and not explain things, which could be why they are doing the too long tours.


As a sitter, I’m grateful for detailed tours. Especially in a larger home. I not only want to know where things are, but I also want to know about their quirks. I want lists of which cleaning product for which surface because I don’t want to wipe up a spill and destroy a floor. My problem is that these often go by so quickly that they aren’t helpful. Personally, I am a fan of videos. We did a last summer where the gardening was a bit complicated – but actually lots of fun. I kept referring to the video the whole time.

I also host. My apartment has a quirky layout and I need sitters to be super careful about the windows – which have hard screens but you have to pull up the screen, push the window out and then put the screen back. I have made some short videos showing various quirks in order to avoid a long tour. It works.


Yeah of course, if things are a bit fiddly or unique to handle, it makes total sense that they show us, and we appreciate this, so totally get it. Just don’t need to be shown stuff if it’s rather self explanatory :laughing:

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@Maggie8K We just encountered this model of shower at an AirBnB. It took us two days to figure it out! :rofl:


I don’t see a need for so many controls in a shower, unless one of them dispenses gin and tonic or maybe whiskey.


I do go through the tour but I do have some essentials I need to know, I want to try the front door key to make sure I can get in and out. The new heavy doors often have a quirk like you have to pull the door towards you slightly to do the last turn of the key. They lock as soon as you step through it so you always need the key in your pocket even going to the bin. The TV is the most complicated piece of equipment in the house, in one home the remotes were numbered to do them in the right order so the tv would work. Where is the pet food kept, the cat carrier etc. If they are going to be in as in one case Antarctica for a week and out of world contact who can make decisions if needed.

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Oh for sure! Thankfully there’s a YouTube video for that (and practically any other question/situation I’ve run into with appliances or home features). :smiling_face:

I concur with this. I was in a home with a very sophisticated shower not that long ago. It had two shower heads and about 8 different nozzles. I had jets of water coming at me at high speed from literally every direction. It was quite the experience! :laughing:


When we sit, we are usually given a little tour, we don’t mind- some people feel anxious during a handoff and feel relieved that they get to say their part.

There was one sit where we had a HO free handoff and it was chaos. The HO forgot to tell us the apt #, door code, etc. They were fantastic hosts and we knew they were in a big rush. It was awesome that I was able to reach him before their super long flight to get in the apt.

When we have sitters over, we give a tour. We have pets with special needs and like to make sure sitters know about our blind/deaf cat, meds, foods, hiding spots, how to lure our other cat out when she hides. We then usually take a walk and show the sitter where we play with our dog also.

For other sitters: what’s a part of the tour you find redundant?

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I think part of that is putting yourself in their shoes…I’d probably do the same if someone was staying at my home. I had a pet sit where I could not find the kitchen light switch to turn it off for 5 days!!! So, the kitchen light stayed on for 5 days straight. Something that simple you would think one could figure it out, but for the life of me I could not find it until day 6.