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Make sure that your hotel window is closed.

Make sure that your hotel window is closed.

Theft from hotel rooms is rare. But when it happens, it mostly happens because of unlocked windows.

I stay a lot in hotels. More than 300 days a year. And I feel really safe in almost all hotel. I often leave my laptop unguarded on the work table in my room. and I leave money behind in the rooms too sometimes. I take tour groups around the world for a living. and I have only had a few cases of things going missing from hotel rooms. But when it happens, it’s almost always because the window has been left open in the room.

Your hotel window should only be open when you are inside the room.

Your hotel window should only be open when you are inside the room.

Why are windows in hotel rooms often left open?

Whenever chambermaids clean hotel rooms, they often open the window to get some fresh air to the room. As a guest, you don’t really need the smell of the previous occupants in your hotel room. This is all good. But for the same reason, you should close the window when you have checked in and leave your hotel room. I always check the window as one of the first things when I check in to a new hotel. And in roughly 50% of the time, there is a window that can be opened from the outside, because it’s not properly locked. You should especially be aware of sliding windows. They might look like they are locked, even when they aren’t.

Many people wrongly assume that it’s cleaning staff who mostly steal from hotel rooms. I am not saying that it never happens. But it’s very rare. They are the first to be suspected if things go missing from a room. Because of that, hardly any cleaning staff will even think about stealing. But a local drug addict will be very quick to scout any buildings in town for open windows, where they can get in. So will other professional burglars. If you are on the 16th floor, then this is not likely to be an issue. But when you stay at lower floors, or at low rise hotel rooms, you should go around and make sure that windows can not be opened from the outside.

Now don’t get paranoid. As I wrote in the beginning, hotel rooms are generally very safe places. But just be ware of this little thing. It’s a real bummer to return to a burgled hotel room.

Don't let monkeys and burglars in to your hotel room.

Don’t let monkeys and burglars in to your hotel room.

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2 Comments

  1. Good advice. I’ve never had anything stolen from a hotel room, but I do check that the windows are locked, especially if there is a balcony that is shared with other rooms.

  2. Good advice, and I believe you’re right about cleaning staff – it’s not worth the risk for them as they would lose their job and likely never work again. Love the monkey outside the window in your photo!

  3. Pingback: Why I went from being a backpacker to becoming a tour cyclist.

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