15 Hotel Workers Reveal Trade Secrets That Hotels Don’t Want You To Know

6 months ago

The holiday season usually means we all anticipate relaxing by the beach or exploring new countries with our loved ones. But booking hotels and traveling can be extremely stressful, and sometimes a great vacation can become a nightmare if the hotel you’re staying at isn’t what you expected. Luckily, these 15 hotel employees shared invaluable trade secrets to tell you what to expect behind the scenes.

  • I work at a major hotel, and the code names were meant to not arouse guests’ worries. Examples: Code B — over the radio, this meant bugs. Brown Out — someone pooped in the pool. Grey Out — Sharks in the water close to shore. © StNic54 / Reddit
  • Any outright complaining you do will likely get you a discount. I’ve realized people are more likely to complain at older properties because, frankly, they’re more likely to get it unquestioned. You’re almost always going to get a 10% difference if you give the clerk any kind of problem with your rate. Selling the room for cheaper is still better than no sale in the eyes of hotel owners. © druumer89 / Reddit
  • If you’ve waited after the cancellation time, the best way to cancel your reservation without getting charged is to call first and say you’re changing your stay to a later date. Then call back within a few hours (hopefully getting a different clerk), and the cancellation fee will be bypassed because there’s now a new cancellation time on the new date. © druumer89 / Reddit
  • I currently work as a housekeeper. People leave anything and everything behind. Forgot your curling iron? We probably have one. Need a charger? Yep. Toys for your child? You got it. If you ask, while we’re in-between rooms or cleaning a common area, we’d love to help you out. © prisonschangedyou / Reddit
  • Get a free fridge in your room. Say it is a medical need for medication. HIPAA laws mean they can’t pressure details out of you. It may not work for smaller motels/hotels, but it should for larger hotels/cruises. © Papapain / Reddit
  • I’ve worked in several nice hotels and can tell you that the toothbrush glasses are not always washed since the cleaners are in a hurry. Often they are just held under the tap and rinsed. Check for lip prints. © Roslagen / Reddit
  • Read the fine print when you book a room. 95% of the time, you are only guaranteed A ROOM and may not get the king or double you booked. Don’t be the last of the scheduled arrivals and angry when your room isn’t exactly what you booked. Show up early, and you’ll get the room you want. Because of this, I’ve always made it a habit to show up before 6 PM at any other hotel that I have booked. © sp***y34 / Reddit
  • Don’t book your hotel room online! The reservations are a pain to deal with. They are almost always impossible to cancel/refund. They also charge MORE than the actual rate and pay us LESS. © jenrazzle / Reddit
  • It never hurts to ask for an upgrade. Be sure to mention if there is a reason for the upgrade (birthday, wedding, etc.), and you may get a special surprise. © kanada_kid / Reddit
  • The staff on most cruise lines are not trained well enough to handle an “abandon ship” situation. It would be chaos if it were to happen on a large vessel. The safety briefing you go to is just theater; we want to be there even less than you do. The captain earns bonuses for saving fuel; leaving port early or arriving late means the ship can go slower and conserve fuel, which means more money for the captain. © Thoranus / Reddit
  • If you have a “do not disturb” sign on your door, we technically are not allowed to knock on your door, even if you just called and asked us to bring you something. © Nexhex_ / Reddit
  • I work at an upscale resort with an average of $500 a night. I work in the entertainment department. I will say that our child daycare is pretty safe, but the only thing is that we will ALWAYS tell you that your kid had a good time, regardless if they had been crying up until just before you got there.
    Parents leave their numbers with us to call if the kid wants to go home. But whenever a kid complains that they want to go home, we do everything we can to ensure they stay. © wwwdotfacebookdotcom / Reddit
  • I worked in numerous luxury 5-star properties worldwide. You would be SHOCKED if you knew the food quality in buffets. I’ve seen yellow food coloring added and labeled as “saffron sauce.” Pan-fried sea bass? It’s pan-fried white fish that comes in generic bags labeled “white fish.”
    People change the expiration date on stuff so food costs don’t increase. The amount of frozen food sold and labeled as “fresh” is astounding! À la carte food tends to have a much better quality! © Bigfatpie / Reddit
  • Duvets are NOT meant to be slept on. Many people are grossed out that they aren’t always changed but are not meant to be used as a blanket. A large warm blanket underneath the sheets is supposed to be used. Everyone who travels knows the horror stories accompanying bed covers, so the right thing to do is to fold it and place it on the floor or chair. © BayHarbourButcher / Reddit
  • There aren’t enough lifeboats on most modern cruise ships. Generally speaking, about two-thirds of those on board can fit on the boats and rafts, the assumptions being a) the ship won’t sink and b) if it does, about one-third of the passengers wouldn’t make it to the boats anyway. For legal purposes, however, the cruise line must be covered in case of sinking.
    So once two-thirds of berths have been booked, the remainder is offered at heavy discounts, the kind you see advertised. If you book one of those on-sale berths, read the small print on your booking, and you will find that you are only entitled to a place on the boat if no full-price passengers can claim it. © C**RK / Reddit

The behind-the-scenes of the hotel industry can surprise even the most experienced traveler. While there might be many people who have negative experiences during their vacations, there are always gems to be found, and some people ended up discovering hotels that went the extra mile to provide a fun time for their guests.

Preview photo credit StNic54 / Reddit


Lucky you! This thread is empty,
which means you've got dibs on the first comment.
Go for it!

Related Reads