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Guests Lighting Shabbat Candles

Updated: Dec 8, 2021

The Daily Halacha Moment - Guests & Shabbat Candles 🕯️

״כל השונה הלכות בכל יום - מובטח לו שהוא בן ‎העולם הבא״ (נידה עג ע״א, מגילה כח:)

“Anyone who studies Halachot every day is guaranteed that he is destined for the world-to-come” (Megilla 28b, Niddah 73a)


What does one do when one's a guest, where do they light?

When do guests light Shabbat Candles?

Who lights the Shabbat candles when many non related people are staying in one house?


If many people are staying in one home for Shabbat and will all be eating and sleeping in the *same* room, then only one person should light the candles on behalf of everyone. However, if each person will be sleeping in different rooms then each person should light in their respective rooms (even with a berachah) and only one person should in the dining room (with a berachah). [1] Ashkenazim (see Rama 263:8), however, rule in accordance with the Rama that one may nevertheless recite a berachah even though there is another candle lit. Therefore, according to this opinion each Ashkenazic person may light his own candles in the dining room. Nonetheless, even according to Ashkenazim (see Mishnah Berurah 263:38; Shemirat Shabbat KeHilchatah 45:9; Az Nidberu 5:1; Be’er Moshe 1:14) it is preferable that if everyone has their own room, then each person should light in their own room.

Similarly, a married couple who are staying at their parent’s home or in-laws, may not light the candles with a berachah since the mother of the home has already fulfilled the obligation of having lights through her lighting. However, if the couple has their own room to sleep in and no one else may enter the room during their stay without their permission, then they should light their own candles in the room they are sleeping in and a berachah may even be recited. The candles must also be large enough that they will still be burning even when the couple gets back to their room later that night. [2]

One who is a guest and has a specific room set aside for him to sleep in, can light in the room that he is sleeping in as mentioned above. [3] However, one who does not have a specific room set aside for him, and also does not have anyone lighting in his home where he came from, should ask the head of the household if he can take part in his lighting and that some of the oil should be given to him as a present. [4] This should be done by the owner of home actually stating that he is giving some of the oil to the guest to take part in the hadlakat nerot. [5]


[1]. Chazon Ovadia, Shabbat, vol. 1, p. 194 & 215 in footnote 20.

[2]. Ben Ish Chai, Noach, 2:11; Chazon Ovadia, Shabbat, vol. 1, p. 194; Halachah Berurah, vol. 15, p. 275; Ohr LeTzion, vol. 2, p. 166.

[3]. Chazon Ovadia, Shabbat, vol. 1, p. 196.

[4]. Shulchan Aruch 263:7. If the guest relies on his basic needs from the owner of the home, such as if he there long-term, then he does not have to acquire a part in the candles or oil. Regarding the definition of being reliant on the owner of the household, see in Chazon Ovadia, Chanukah, p. 152; Yalkut Yosef, Shabbat, book 1, vol. 2, p. 72; ibid. Chanukah, p. 506; Torat HaMoadim, Chanukah, p. 55; Ohr LeTzion, vol. 2, chap. 6, footnote 6; Menuchat Ahavah 1:4:10; Shemirat Shabbat KeHilchatah 45:1.

[5]. Halachah Berurah, vol. 15, p. 286.

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