There’s no easy way to let someone know that they’ve overstayed their welcome. The following AskReddit users share their not-so-subtle moves that scream sayonara.
Source list available at the end.
My father-in-law used to have a big red ‘EXIT’ light (like the ones that you see in a movie theatre) installed over his front door that he would turn on silently when he wanted to go to bed.
I’ve read that when Robert Mueller was the director of the FBI, he would occasionally invite senior staff over for dinner and drinks. At quarter to 11, he would start turning the lights off in his house (starting furthest from the front door, to let his guests know that it was time to leave).
He also made it clear that he expected to see all of them bright and early the next day at work.
When I was 17 I was at a party that was being held by a 19 year old recent high school graduate. Let’s call him Sid. It was in his family’s new home that was about halfway finished being built. The structure was up, plywood walls, steps, floors, but no HVAC, electric, plumbing, or siding/roofing were done.
Sid’s younger brother was my age, so there were a lot of people ranging from my age to 21 years old. He had made some announcement at 2 am for everyone to start leaving since he was calling the party off. A few people left, but the majority ignored him.
Then Sid disappeared for a while and then I hear a shotgun go off. Sid is standing on the top floor balcony overlooking the majority of the party (some were on the top floor too). There is a hole in the roof directly above him. He screams “Get the hell out now!” And pumps the shotgun during a dead silence.
His house emptied out in less than 20 seconds. 19 year old dude became a cop in the next town over not long after that.
My mom used to give our out-of-town guests one roll of toilet paper and tell them, “When this is gone… so are you.” She was a savage.
I have my AC unit set to a low temperature past 11pm because I love sleeping in the cold. It takes about 15-20 mins to start feeling cold. I can also control it through my phone, so I just turn it on when I want people gone within 20 mins.
If someone complains then I just say, “Yeah, it’s set to turn on before I go to bed”. They usually get the point.
Play the Star Wars holiday special. Or any other single player game that your guest don’t like.
I had a buddy in college who’s house we’d party at on the weekends until really late. His roommate did this thing when it was getting to be that time, whenever someone shifted in their seat, he’d jump up and reach out his hand like he was going to shake yours and say, “Y’all be good now.”
It was perfect for making you feel awkward enough to leave. We saw him do it so much that we all started doing the same thing when anyone overstayed their welcome.
I’ve personally tried going to bed. Everyone left except for one guy. He just slept on my floor. When I woke up the next morning, I didn’t know how to tell him that I had expected him to leave with the rest of the party last night, so we went rollerblading at 7 am.
My best friend’s almost 2-year-old will bring me my shoes when she wants me to leave. We will be chatting and having a grand old time, and here comes the baby with my shoes. Once she brought them and said, “You go!” Most of the time it’s just silence and handing me my shoes.
As a little kid, I cut footstep shapes out of construction paper and would lay them on the floor leading from the person to the door, if I thought they were staying too long.
As an adult, I had a (male, unattractive) roommate that would announce at the beginning of the party when “naked time” was. At that point, he would start stripping until people got so uncomfortable that they would have to leave.
I was once at a dinner party where the hosts suggested that we should take a group photo before everyone left. That meant that everybody stood up from their seats and posed for the photo. The hosts were then ready with everybody’s coats and jackets. We were out on the street in like 10 min.
I remember thinking that this was an awesome way to kick people out. I’ve used it couple of times myself.
My in-law goes around with the coffee pot offering people a “last cup of coffee.” This tends to shut things down.
Look around and say:
“This has been mostly enjoyable, but all good things must come to an end.”
Then, usher them out with a smile and go to bed.
Make a post on Facebook at 10:45 that reads: “Had a great party, glad everyone left by 11.”
I start doing the dishes. I carry on the conversation like nothing has changed, but people get uncomfortable watching others do chores.
Never host so you can always leave when you want to.
Cut them off your wifi.
My friend’s son said to me, “Why are you still here? You’ve been here a very long time.” She still gets embarrassed when I mention it. I thought he was adorable in his directness.
This is how we got people out of the barn at the Children’s Farm where I worked. Yell, “The barn is closing now.” No one leaves. Start pulling big doors shut and turning off lights, and people think you’re going to lock them in.
I had a date once and I invited the guy in later that evening. We did some kissing and stuff but I didn’t like it much and wanted him to leave. He wasn’t picking up on my “I’m so tired” hints so I jumped up and said “OH CRAP I WAS SUPPOSED TO MEET MY MOM AT ______ O’CLOCK.” and frantically started apologizing and gathering my stuff.
Then I walked him to his car and ran back in to “finish getting ready.”
Yeah it was crappy, but somehow seemed better than “hey, I want you to leave.”
One time, I was hanging out with a crush. I had only been there for about an hour, but I guess I just annoyed him. He stomped into the room and announced that he was going to make himself a sandwich. I said, “That’s okay. I don’t mind a sandwich.” He then proceeded to yell, “I DON’T HAVE ENOUGH INGREDIENTS FOR YOU!”
I stage an argument with my spouse and then one of us dashes into the bedroom. Works like a charm.
You put away the alcohol.
My son (when he was about 4) walked into the middle of the room in his PJs and shouted, “The party is over!” People got the hint.
When I was younger, I had a friend come over to play video games (the single player ones) on my computer. He’d play for hours and ignore my suggestions that we go and do something else.
I eventually got so bored and frustrated that I left the room without him even noticing, went to the breaker box, and killed the power to the house.
“Hmmm weird, the power must be out,” I said. He left shortly after.
My aunt and uncle had people that would constantly drop in unannounced and just in time for dinner. Then, they would wait until very late before leaving.
They’d never offer to help with things like dishes/cleanup or prep work. They’d just show up to eat dinner and drink after dinner drinks.
When my aunt finally decided that enough was enough, she made sure the guests were able to see her put the dinner plates on the floor for the dogs to lick clean and then put them immediately back in the cupboard.
The guests stopped coming for dinner.
Posts may be edited for clarity.