Seven ways to annoy hotel staff

Running a hotel would be hard work. Front-desk staff are paid to smile in the face of often rude customers, porters to run heavy bags around myriad halls and elevators, kitchen staff to keep hangry diners happy and imagine how tough a job housekeepers have.

And while the job itself is tiring, there are even more ways you can really annoy hotel staff, such as …

1. Thinking the rules don’t apply to you
If breakfast runs from 7am to 10am, make sure you’re there between those times. Don’t take extra guests to your room, use the pool after hours or smoke on the balcony. Hotel staff often have to deal with complaints from guests who, thinking that because they are paying customers, also think they are above these laws.

2. Expecting early check-in and late check-out
Timing is everything when running a hotel, so you arriving at 11am for a 2.30pm check-in or, conversely, checking out at 12pm when check-out is at 10.30am really throws a spanner in a hotel operation’s works.

3. Complaining for upgrades
Complaining about minor issues in order to score an upgrade is the fastest way to finding foreign matter in your room service meal. Not really, but, unless you have a major grievance, don’t expect an upgrade. It’s not fair to expect a quiet room on a main street in a busy city, so using that as a basis for requesting an upgrade makes life very tough for hotel staff. A hotel’s reputation is crucial and the threat of bad reviews constantly hangs over them, so dealing with false complaints is just petty and unfair, and really peeves people off.

4. Misusing towels
Towels are for drying off after a shower, not cleaning up red wine spills or removing your make-up. And with so many hotels trying to do the environmentally responsible thing when it comes to towels, guests should treat hotel towels as they would their ones at home – i.e., you don’t wash your home towels every day, so why expect the hotel to do that for you?

5. Living in sloth
Yes, your room will be cleaned every day, unless you request otherwise, but that doesn’t mean you should leave your clothes or rubbish lying around everywhere or make no effort to clean after yourself. It’s not only poor form, but a hassle for hotel workers and also disrespectful.

6. Not tipping hotel staff
It’s common courtesy to tip hotel staff. This includes bell-boys, porters, concierges and housekeepers. News of non-tippers travels fast around a hotel, so look after the staff and they will look after you.

7. Being rude
Want to annoy the staff from the get-go? Try staying on your phone through check-in, or talking to check-in staff like they are lowly beings, or forgetting to say please and thank you.

Same goes for being overly demanding. Just because you’re paying to stay somewhere, doesn’t mean you get to treat the staff like servants. If you’re nice to them, they’ll look after you, but don’t expect them to go above and beyond just because you paid a room rate.

Have you ever noticed how much better staff treat you if you’re nice to them? Have you ever had an awkward hotel staff experience?

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Written by Leon Della Bosca

Leon Della Bosca has worked in publishing and media in one form or another for around 25 years. He's a voracious reader, word spinner and art, writing, design, painting, drawing, travel and photography enthusiast. You'll often find him roaming through galleries or exploring the streets of his beloved Melbourne and surrounding suburbs, sketchpad or notebook in hand, smiling.


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