12 Things Guaranteed to Piss Off Hotel Staff

See recent posts by Toby Orton

From housekeepers to front-desk agents, hotel employees have a tough job. Sure, it’s a service-oriented industry, but guests can make the life of hotel staff much harder than it needs to be. We surveyed a range of folks with history in the industry to uncover the things that annoy them the most. From using towels as floor cloths to being treated like servants, here are 12 things that are guaranteed to piss off hotel staff.

1. Letting Children Run Around in a Hotel

Kids are cute, but not when they’re running wild through a hotel restaurant as staff is attempting to serve breakfast to a packed house. And really, it’s not the free-wheeling children that annoy hotel staff — it’s the parents who allow them to let loose. We had countless reports of parents turning a blind eye to the havoc of their children because, well, vacation.

2. Accusing Hotel Staff of Stealing

When some hotel guests lose or misplace an item, thoughts instantly jump to theft. We’re not saying that it doesn’t happen, but accusing housekeeping of stealing seems to be a default move — and one that shows no respect for the job. Naturally, when the missing item turns up, housekeeping doesn’t feel so happy, nor does management, who has to deal with these mishaps regularly.

3. Thinking That the Rules Don’t Apply to You

When breakfast runs from 7 a.m. through 10 a.m., show up during these hours. Staff members get peeved when dealing with complaints from tardy guests who missed breakfast and arrive thinking that service will be extended for them since they’re paying customers. If you’re pleasant, you might get a small selection from the continental spread, but don’t expect anything. Also, smoking on the balcony, inviting extra people up to rooms, and using the pool after hours are a few more things that might annoy hotel staff.

4. Flushing Everything Down the Toilet

Flushing items like contraceptives and feminine hygiene products, which are not designed to go down the toilet, is a surefire way to create a blockage that the hotel staff will need to fix. Don’t lose sight of what is and isn’t acceptable to flush just because you’re on vacation.

5. Expecting Early Check-In and Late Check-Out to Be a Right

Hotel guests are often unaware of the complexities of running a good property. One way to piss off the hotel staff is to arrive demanding an early check-in time, and getting angry when that request isn’t granted. Asking for a late check-out at the last minute is another way to get on the staff’s bad side. Housekeepers have to flip a room as quickly as possible (cleaning thoroughly, of course), and the late check-out of one guest and the early check-in of another can create a scheduling conflict.

6. Making Minor Complaints to Score a Hotel Upgrade

Setting aside genuine grievances, which can occur in any hotel, complaining about every minor issue in order to gain upgrades or comp nights is one of the biggest pet peeves for staff. From expecting a super-quiet room when you’re in the heart of Times Square to claiming the water doesn’t heat up quickly enough, there are many complaints that guests make before requesting an upgrade. It puts hotel staff in a tough position because a property’s reputation is crucial and the threat of poor online reviews makes false complaints ever harder to handle.

7. Misusing Towels in Your Hotel Room

Between wiping off makeup and mopping up spills, the humble hotel towel is abused in countless ways that cost hotels both time and money. If you want to piss off hotel staff, using towels incorrectly should do the trick.

8. Hiding Large Luggage Carts

Hotel work is hard, and the last thing staff members want is to find missing carts when moving guest suitcases up to rooms. A hotel runs smoothly when everything ticks along as it should, so when guests keep the luggage carts in their rooms or stow them in hard-to-find places, the system becomes compromised.

9. Making No Effort to Clean Up Your Hotel Room

Sure, hotels have cleaners, but that doesn’t mean you have a free pass to leave your room in chaos for the duration of your stay. For example, making no effort to pick up your clothes and trash from the floor is not only a major hassle for hotel workers but also disrespectful.

10. Skipping a Tip for Hotel Staff

Rumors of poor tippers or guests that flat-out refuse to show gratuity travel fast in hotels. Failing to tip the bellman or housekeeping staff is a quick way to piss off the people taking care of your luggage and room.

11. Being Rude to Hotel Staff

Staying on your phone through check-in, speaking through staff as if they’re not there, only expecting to deal with the manager, ignoring the room service calls, and forgetting to say thank you — there are a multitude of ways that guests can come across as rude, and each one is more annoying than the next.

12. Being Overly Demanding of Hotel Staff

Some guests arrive at their hotel expecting every whim to be catered to, regardless of manners, simply because they paid for a stay. One key complaint that popped up during our research is that hotel staff members do not appreciate being treated like servants. If you’re not staying in a luxury, five-star property, manage your expectations. And if you’re pleasant and genuinely nice to staff, they will often go above and beyond their call of duty.

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