Being Safe In Your Hotel
Probably the last thing you want to worry about when going on holiday is thinking about being safe in your hotel. But returning from a day out exploring the local sites and attractions to then find that your hotel room has been ransacked is a guaranteed way to ruin your holiday.
Break-ins, fires, natural catastrophes and terrorist attacks are just a few of the potential threats to travellers and of being safe in your hotel. While we don’t suggest being too paranoid about a few of these issues, it remains in your own best interest to take a few safety measures to protect against more typical risks, such as theft or fire. Here are some tips to help you being safe in your hotel.
PRIOR TO YOUR STAY
Long before you in fact book your hotel, start by doing your research. Take a mindful look at the security scenario in the nation and/or city you’ll be going to. Is terrorism a threat? Are travellers typically targeted in regional criminal activities? Are specific communities, cities or areas more protected than others?
When the time pertains to reserve your hotel, don’t simply look at rates and amenities – pay attention to its location too. Is the hotel in a high end residential community, a dynamic enterprise zone or a seedy industrial location? Is it safe to walk after dark? Is there a police station close by? All these aspects could affect the likelihood of a burglary or attack during your stay.
You’ll likewise wish to learn about the hotel’s own security procedures. Call ahead and ask whether the front desk is staffed 24 hours a day, if there are guard on the premises and if there are monitoring video cameras in the public areas. In locations where terrorism is a concern, are automobiles inspected before coming onto the property? Is access to guest room floorings limited to just guests? If hotel staff cannot provide any particular examples of what they do to keep visitors safe, then book somewhere else.
They’re few and far between, but women-only accommodations may be worth looking into for female tourists, especially those traveling solo and concerned about safety – women-only dorms would be an example of this.
Make sure you have a mobile phone that will work throughout your journey. Program crucial phone numbers into it, ahead of time – like the direct line to your hotel’s front desk, the number of your home nation’s nearest embassy and the nationwide emergency number (such as 911 in the U.S. and Canada, or 112 in numerous parts of Europe).
Make 2 copies of your passport and credit/ATM cards: one to leave at home with a friend or member of the family, and the other to bring with you on your trip. Make certain to keep it in a different location than the originals in case of theft. It’s also a good idea to leave a copy of your schedule with somebody at home to make it much easier to track you down during a natural catastrophe or terrorist attack.
For security during worldwide travel – particularly long-term trips or if travelling to less stable nations, we suggest registering your presence with your nation’s embassy or consulate in the region.
When checking in, don’t accept a room on the ground floor if you can prevent it. Numerous safety professionals advise remaining someplace in between the third and 6th floors – room that are high enough to be difficult to burglarise, but not so high that they run out of the reach of most fire truck ladders.
If you’re staying in a hotel where doors open directly to the outside (instead of a corridor), see if you can get a room overlooking an interior garden, rather of a parking area.
Do not let the front desk attendant publicise your room number. If he or she announces it aloud when offering you your key, ask for a different room.
While you’re at the front desk, ask which phone number you ought to dial in case of an emergency situation. Is a direct line to the hotel’s security? Should you call the national emergency number?
Upon arriving at your room, instantly determine an emergency exit path. Inspect the location of the closest stairwell and/or emergency exit (elevators need to be avoided during a fire) and determine a couple of possible plans for escape in case the corridor is obstructed in one instructions or another.
Check the locks on the windows (and balcony door, if applicable) as soon as you get there, and alert the front desk if any are not working. It’s a smart idea to examine these locks once again each time you go back to the room, as housekeeping may open them and forget to close them properly. If your room links to the one next to it, make sure that door is locked also.
BEING SAFE IN YOUR HOTEL
Keep your door locked at all times whenever you’re in your room – consisting of any deadbolts, security chains or swinging metal security locks. Never ever prop your door open, no matter how briefly.
During the night, leave a pair of shoes next to the bed in case you have to leave in a rush. Keep your room key, wallet, smartphone and a torch close to hand as well.
If somebody knocks on your door unexpectedly and claims to be hotel staff, call the front desk to make sure that this is in fact true. Never ever open your door to somebody until you’re sure of his/her identity – use the peephole instead.
Protect your valuable possessions by utilising the hotel safe – or better still, leaving them at the front desk while you’re out. Get a written receipt for anything you entrust with the front desk and double check whether you’re covered in case of any loss. (Numerous hotels do not accept liability for products left in guest room safes.) If you’re traveling with a laptop computer, check ahead to be sure the safe in the space is big enough to hold it.
When you’re out, consider leaving the TV or radio on, or putting your “Do Not Disturb” sign on the door – both of these techniques will provide potential thieves the impression that you’re still there. You could also call the front desk to set up a housekeeping check, even if the “Do Not Disturb” sign is up).
The hotel parking area and corridors must be well lit. Report any interruptions to the front desk and request for a security escort if you feel unsafe.
If you do experience a criminal offence during your stay, do not simply complain to the hotel – file a police report also. Your home or travel insurance policy might cover particular losses throughout your travels, and the insurance provider will require a copy of the police report and other pertinent documentations.