Things Hotel Managers Don’t Want You To Know

By Sarah M 6 months ago

About The Bedbugs... *Faints*

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If you have spent any time online during Paris Fashion Week, you know that Europe is currently experiencing a bedbugs epidemic (yikes). Your hotel won't want you to know that bedbugs are a common occurrence in the hotel industry, and they are steaming the mattresses to remove them!

Why You Got THAT Room

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Have you ever wondered why you were put on the second floor and all your mates are on the 4th? It could be due to your gender or even your work! Many hotels now run a policy of putting all female solo travellers on the 'family' floor and reserving one level just for business people!

They May Have Overbooked... oops!

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Have you ever arrived at your hotel to find the room you were promised was double booked? Frustrating, right? Well, it is very common practice for hotels to intentionally over book as they are expecting some people not to turn up and don't want to lose out on revenue!

You Can Try To Negotiate

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We have all seen people bartering over antiques on daytime TV, but did you know that you could be doing the same for your hotel room? Many hotel managers are open to negotiation on room rates, especially if you are visiting out of season or if the hotel is particularly quiet.

Room Availability (And Why You Are Being Kept Out!)

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Have you ever turned up at your hotel and wondered why the receptionist is so chatty or why you are being encouraged to enjoy a free drink in the bar before checking in? Delays in your room being ready are very common due to guests oversleeping or leaving a big mess!

The Noise... (Enjoy The Free Earplugs!)

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It's very unlikely that you will be warned if there is loud construction going on outside or if the only room available is next to a group of party-goers. Don't worry, the hotel are aware and trying to control it, but they can't risk losing revenue by telling you in advance.

The Varying Levels of Cleanliness (Eww!)

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There's nothing worse that opening the door to your holiday hotel room, only to find stains on the carpet and sheets. This is a common complaint in hotels around the world due to quick turn arounds for housekeeping staff; often meaning they have to cut corners.

The Way to Get Upgraded!

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Here's some insider info! Every hotel receptionist will be equipped with a list of reasons or complaints that prompt an instant upgrade! It's worth checking trip advisor to see who has previously been upgraded and why. We are also told that it's always worth asking on a quiet day...

Security Cameras (They're Watching You)

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Just like any business or workplace, hotels need to ensure the safety of their staff and will likely do this through the use of security cameras... even some hidden ones! There should never be a camera in your room, but be careful when stealing a cheeky kiss in the elevator!

The Hidden Maintenance Issues

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Running a hotel is EXPENSIVE, especially if it is 'off' season and the hotel in question is in an old building! It's not always possible to find funding for everything and keep the business running, so there will often be maintenance issues 'backstage' that are hidden from guests.

The Dreaded Group Bookings...

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It's not uncommon for larger hotels to offer big discounts to group bookings; often providing a conference room or social space as part of the deal. Unfortunately, other guests are unlikely to be informed about any noisy groups that are also booked onto their floor...

Special Discounts (And How To Find Them)

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In order to keep the hotel running and rooms filled, most hotels will be offering discounts throughout the year; so it's always worth searching the web before booking! Also, check other booking comparison sites before paying out, as they will all be offering competitive deals for the same hotel.

Watch Out for Sneaky Fees

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Look, no one said all of these insider secrets were entirely above board...A way most hotels make extra revenue is by not informing customers of all the fees up front. They may initially fail to include VAT, resort fees or even a compulsory housekeeping fee!

Cancellation Policies (And How They Ruin Your Holiday!)

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We've all experienced it: declaring 'they can't do that, it can't be legal' only to read the contract we signed and find out they very much can! Make sure you read the small print when booking and prepare for the worst... it's often the hotel's call if they cancel your stay at the last minute!

Different Rates For Different Mates

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Imagine checking in to the hotel you spent a fortune on, only to hear the person in front of you being offered the same room for a more competitive price! Many hotels use flexible forecasting to ensure all rooms are filled and prices may change daily to keep revenue up.

Late Check-Out/Early Check-In

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It's a pain when you get off the plane with all of your luggage but can't check in to your hotel until mid afternoon. It is always worth calling ahead to enquire about early check-ins and late check-outs, most hotels do them and often at no extra cost if organized in advance.

Guest Lists

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We would love to tell you that all bookings are equal and the same priority is given to everyone, but in the luxury hotel industry, there couldn't be a bigger lie! Certain people of importance will always get extra special treatment due to their connections or loyalty to the business.

They Know He's Not Your Husband...

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What, you really thought they wouldn't notice? Hotel receptionists are trained to be observant for the safety of the guests and smooth running of the hotel; and if they notice something suspicious... you can bet they are gossiping about it in the staff room!

Staffing Issues

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Like every business in the hospitality sector, staffing is often a struggle with most workers being on casual, flexible contracts. Moreover, since the pandemic, hotels are finding it harder and harder to hire new recruits. So, if you have a longer wait for your room, this might be why!

Not Changing Sheets...

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In busy hotels with quick guest turnovers, it is common practice for cleaners to be given a hierarchy of jobs and if you are a guest who needs their sheets changed in the middle of their stay, you will probably be the one to miss out. Be sure to chat with reception to request this.

Expensive Dining

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Hotel managers aren't silly, they know how tempting it is to stay in after a long flight or busy day and buy your evening meal in the hotel. Because of this, you will likely be charged way above the local average and huge additional fees to bring it to your room!

Tip The Housekeeper

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Are you wondering why your friends in the room next door got a more thorough clean and chocolates left on their pillows? Well, they probably showed their appreciation to the housekeeper by offering them a tip. It's an open secret that this gets you special treatment!

Un-Secure Safes

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If you have important or expensive items to store during your stay, it's wise to be wary of in-room safes which are usually old and not completely secure due to security measures. If you need something protected, ask reception about using the hotel safe.

Mini-Bar Prices

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We all make this mistake once and never again! If any items in your room, specifically in the in-room fridge appear to be free, it's always best to call down to reception to check first! Enjoying a chocolate bar or bottle of water from the mini bar could result in a big fee!

Get Engaged Again!

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A good hotel manager will always be keeping an eye out for little ways they can enhance the guest experience. Reception staff will be informed which guests are celebrating big occasions and will have a budget for complimentary drinks and flowers to make it extra special.

Fake Reviews

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Look, this isn't *technically* illegal... right? Well, morality aside, its probably best not to rely entirely on online reviews when choosing your hotel, as many positives may be provided by the hotel themselves and negatives by rival business trolls!

Bring Your Own Lock...

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This is one for the solo female travellers among us; we all know how intimidating it is to stay in a hotel alone, especially after reading all of the horror stories online. Hotel locks are not always the safest due to security measures, so, if you feel unsafe, its worth bringing your own.

Loyalty Programs

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Are you a frequent traveller who often uses the same brand of hotel? Or do you often stay overnight in the same city for work? It's worth asking at reception about loyalty schemes; most hotels have them and it could save you a lot of money in the future.

They Need Your Feedback

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Like every business, nothing will improve if they aren’t able to source reliable customer feedback. If you want to see an improvement in your favorite hotel, don’t throw the feedback form in the trash when you get home but take the time to thoughtfully respond.

Running A Hotel Is HARD!

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Wait, you thought that running a hotel, with its constant room turnovers, difficult guests and fluctuating revenue was EASY?! Think again. Running a tight ship with this many plates spinning is no simple task; if something goes wrong with your stay, please be kind!