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11 Items to Keep in Stock for Overnight Guests

Last year we shared a post on how to be the kind of houseguest they’ll want back. Now it’s time to repay the hospitality in kind.

Whether the kids are visiting, the gang is gathering ahead of a road trip or last night’s party got a little too wild, chances are you’ll be hosting overnight guests at some point. To help you out, we’ve assembled the things you’ll want to have on hand to win the title of “Host with the Most.”

How impressed will they be? Let’s just say they won’t even realize you ate all the pillow mints.

1. Toothbrushes

Nothing says last night was ill-planned quite like slimy teeth. But fresh breath and leaves you feeling in control and cared for. Pick up a couple of extra toothbrushes next time you see them on sale or visit the dollar store, and store them in your medicine cabinet with some travel-size toothpaste until it’s show time.

2. Bathroom Towels

Feeling fresh helps, too. Keep a wash cloth, hand towel and full-size towel bundled for such an occasion. Tied up in decorative ribbon? We’ll leave that up to you.

3. Clean Sheets

Fresh sheet day may not be as celebrated as payday, but it doesn’t come too far behind in excitement. So clean sheets and pillowcases are a must for hosting overnight guests. As with towels, leave these spare sheets handy in your linen closet until duty calls.

4. Throw Blankets

Your guests may not always have the luxury of a spare room. But a snuggly blanket can keep a night on the couch from feeling second-rate. Best of all, a knit throw acts as accent decor for your sofa or bed when not on active duty.

5. Wi-Fi Password

No matter whether your visitors are night owls or early birds, chances are they wouldn’t mind checking their emails. Anticipate this room service request by writing out the Wi-Fi password on an index card and keeping it on the nightstand.

6. Reading Material

Of course, a good magazine doesn’t hurt, either. A monthly digest, paperback or photo album gives insomniacs something to peruse before they snooze.

7. Food and Drink

No need to get fancy here. A glass of water and some packaged snacks are more than enough to tide over hungry guests who aren’t yet ready to venture out towards the kitchen.

But if you do want to get fancy, here’s an idea: Put some ice in the wine bucket you never seem to have an occasion to use and chill some juice boxes or water bottles. Or make a batch of cookies if you have enough notice.


8. Closet Space

An empty dresser drawer or a few spare hangers in the closet go a long way. Doubly so if last night involved glamming it up in a new dress or pressed suit.

9. Non-Prescription Medication

Will tonight’s late night lead to tomorrow morning’s headache? Take the proactive approach and pick up a few packets of aspirin, ibuprofen or acetaminophen from your local pharmacy. Then place a couple on your guest’s nightstand.

10. Coffee (or Tea)

It could be a scoop of instant, a single-use pod or a box of orange pekoe – caffeine is caffeine! Just be sure to leave the necessary equipment and brewing instructions out in case you don’t want to be dragged out of bed. (Or better yet, get your coffee right from your fridge dispenser.)

11. Pens and Paper

Finally, offer an easy way for your overnight guests to share their thanks. A box of notecards lets you collect your memories and display them for posterity. Don’t forget to record the date!

*Bonus Item* Convertible Sleep Space

Overnight Bed in Convertible Cabinet

What if you don’t have an extra bedroom at your disposal, or even a sofa bed? In this case, try something like the Manhattan Sleep Chest™. A simple sideboard by day, it transforms into a queen-size bed by night!