Even though our rules state that check in is possible only until 10 pm, to prevent disturbing other guests, we were totally willing to wait a bit longer for Stuart and his family when he informed us they were leaving the airport at 10 pm, a 45 minute drive from the apartment. By 11 pm we contacted them and got a message that they were still an hour away and when by 12.30 we contacted them again, they said they were still an hour away from us. On our inquiry about their location in order to give directions, we got no answer. We waited till 1.30 am and finally put the keys in a key box and sent them instructions. At 2.30 we were woken up by a phone call and when it turned out they were by our building I explained that yes, this building was the right one and the keys were in the box. Still they continued calling us, the reason for this completely unclear to us, as we heard them being already inside the gate with keys and instructions. We came out because we did not want the other guests to be disturbed. No apologies on their part. My husband was not amused and clearly stated that (no racist swearing was involved though). Their claim to have been lost was completely farfetched to us as during their 4.5 hour journey, on a normally 45 minute drive, not once did they ask us for directions which we would have been happy to give them. We had been available and contacting them by phone during the whole part of their journey. When they finally arrived they brought a relative along, who appaeared to live a half hour away from us. It was completely beyond us why they claimed to have driven 2 hours in the opposite direction from the airport while their relative lived relatively near us. Although they had not reserved for this extra person I offered to bring extra bedding but according to them this was unneccesary as he would not stay the night. Since it was so late already and we did not want any more discussion as to not wake the other guests we told them we would come over the next morning. Which I did, only entering the house of course after being invited in. Finding out that the guests were not happy and any discussion was impossible I offered them the possibility of a cancellation with a full refund, which they eventually declined. It turned out the relative had stayed the night after all on the couch which by the way because of hygiene we usually do not allow.
This incident was not about just being lost really, as in those cases we are always available and willing to go out of our way to help out and give directions and be flexible whenever possible. However, when guests are completely uncommunicative and respectless of our house rules, we may still offer them their reserved accommodation, but the warmest welcome that usually are given may not be included.