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A guest is invited by a host to visit their home, although they are not very close. The host doesn't intend to invite the guest to eat, but they intentionally send a signal to the host that they are hungry so that the host invites them to stay and eat. Whether the host acknowledge this or not, or whether they do share their meal or not, the important thing here is that the guest knows that they shouldn't do that, but they just don't care.

What is the word for using someone's hospitality unashamedly?

marked as duplicate by tchrist single-word-requests Dec 3 '16 at 19:12

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    Ooh, I think this is a cultural thing. And much depends on whether people are naturally inclined to generosity or whether they adhere to strict protocol. Would a British or American family feel obliged to invite a guest to stay for dinner if they had the effrontery to say (or hint) "Oh boy, am I hungry" around 7 pm? Not if that person has their own means of transport! Then it would be a simple case of saying, "Oh, we're so sorry for keeping you here so long, the time just flew! Maybe we could all go out for dinner one evening." and then hand the guest their coat. :) – Mari-Lou A Dec 3 '16 at 17:42
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    @Mari-LouA I think it is much more subcultural than that. In several different cultural groups in the US, a visitor might be invited, even if it was quite inconvenient. And neighborhood children often cadge (one of the possible answers) an invite to stay for dinner, often saying yes to the forced offer, ignoring the unwelcoming scowl of their friends mother. – bib Dec 3 '16 at 18:41
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    @bib but I believe that in some cultures it is viewed as a faux pas not to invite a guest to stay for a meal, not sure which one, and it is customary for that guest to politely refuse. But otherwise, yes you're completely right. Maybe it's becoming less of a problem thanks to takeaway restaurants and microwave dinners :) Cooking at home is not as ubiquitous as it was once. – Mari-Lou A Dec 3 '16 at 18:50
  • Not enough context: As @Mari-LouA said, it's entirely dependent on cultural assumptions of what's expected and customary on the part of both host and guest. In many cultures, inviting someone to your house around dinner-time is considered a dinner invite, even if not explicit. – smci Dec 3 '16 at 19:14
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    On the one hand, I believe that this question is focused well enough on a specific behavior that it is not a duplicate of the other question, which is much broader. On the other hand, I believe that this question should be closed for failing to include a sample sentence and clarify the cultural context. Also, the OP should quantify the desired tone. E.g., the Q, as it currently stands, could plausibly be answered “persuasive” or “entrepreneurial”. The reference to “shame” makes me suspect that the OP wants something pejorative, but how pejorative? And show research. – Scott Dec 3 '16 at 21:27

This so-called "guest" is presuming on his hapless victim host. In other forms, this person is said to be, presuming on someone's generosity, or just presumptuous.

Among the definitions of presume at dictonary.com you will find

to act or proceed with unwarrantable or impertinent boldness

Also, among the Yiddish words we presume to use in English is Schnorrer, which I once heard described as "someone who barges into your house and throws open the refrigerator".


A common term is freeloader

A person who takes advantage of others' generosity without giving anything in return.

Oxford Dictionaries Online

Freeload is similarly defined in Merriam-Webster

to impose upon another's generosity or hospitality without sharing in the cost or responsibility involved

Another informal term is sponge

informal [no object] Obtain or accept money or food from other people without doing or intending to do anything in return.

they found they could earn a perfectly good living by sponging off others

Oxford Dictionaries Online


... the important thing here is that the guest knows that they shouldn't do that, but they just don't care.

It's not a single word, but it's important to note that it's better to use the idiom overstay (outstay) one's welcome which means:

to stay at a place for longer than people want

[Macmillan Online Dictionary]


They guest is abusing their hospitality thereby wearing out his welcome.

Verb wear out one's welcome
Alternative forms
overstay one's welcome

(idiomatic) To behave in an offensive, burdensome, or tiresome manner, with the result that one's continued presence is unwanted within a residence, commercial establishment, or social group.


The guest in context is scrounging for food.


scrounge VERB
1 Seek to obtain (something, typically food or money) at the expense or through the generosity of others or by stealth:
‘he had managed to scrounge a free meal’

‘You spend your benefit money on drugs and then you come round here scrounging for free food.’

Also, mooching.


mooch VERB

2 North American [with object] Ask for or obtain (something) without paying for it:
‘a bunch of your friends will show up, mooching food’
[no object] ‘I'm mooching off you all the time’

‘They are nice in every way, except for the fact that they always try to mooch food from us.’
‘He goes around the cafeteria and floats from table to table, talking with everyone and mooching off them at the same time so he doesn't have to pay for lunch.’

  • Well, ODO’s definition is something i’ve never encountered before. (It’s the ‘at the expense or through the generosity of others’ that doesn’t match) My experience is more in line with M-W: to get as needed by or as if by foraging, scavenging, or borrowing <scrounging enough money for a bus ticket> vi : to search about and turn up something needed from whatever source is available; also: to actively seek money, work, or sustenance from any available source – Jim Dec 3 '16 at 18:13
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    Now mooching fits perfectly! – Jim Dec 3 '16 at 18:14

You guest is imposing on/upon your host.


impose on/upon:

  • to thrust oneself offensively upon others; intrude

  • to take unfair advantage of; misuse (influence, friendship, etc.)

The latter meaning fits your context best.


You could also consider Leech

a person who stays around other people and uses them for personal gain

[Merriam Webster]

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