Tuesday, September 29, 2020 Edition: U.S. & World | Regional

Hotel Etiquette for Guests

The do’s and don’ts of hotel etiquette can be a mystery, especially if you don’t travel all that often. While proper etiquette is important for people during their everyday lives, it is even more important when you’re on vacation. You don’t want to be “that guest,” the one who ruins other people’s holiday or makes life miserable for the hardworking housekeeping staff. The rules are not so much different from everyday courtesy, but there are a few extras that people may not be aware of, especially when it comes to hotels.


Here is a list of hotel etiquette guidelines that every guest needs to know:

1    Tipping

There is a lot of staff at a hotel and it can be very confusing as to who needs to be tipped and who doesn’t. Anyone who works at the main desk does not need to be tipped for their services. However, if the hotel has a concierge desk and a person utilizes the concierge services during their stay, a tip should be given prior to departure. The doorman and parking valet should be tipped upon arrival and departure, the porter once bags have been picked up, and the housekeeping staff every morning if the room is being cleaned daily. The amounts of the tips will vary according to the hotel, but people should be prepared to pay between $2 and $5 for each tip, with the exception of the concierge who will receive a higher amount at the end of the stay.
2    Housekeeping

The housekeeping staff keeps the rooms clean for the guests, but there are certain things that guests should do prior to housekeeping entering the room. Guests should pile all their dirty towels into one pile, preferably in the bathtub, so that housekeeping can easily see what needs to be removed and replaced. All trash should be placed inside a garbage can for easy removal as well. These steps will ensure that the staff will not remove any items that a guest is not finished with and allow them to spend time cleaning the bathroom and vacuuming instead of picking through a huge mess.
3    Departure

Most hotels make checkout quite easy by allowing guests to see their bill on either the television or a printout that has been slipped under their door. As long as a guest does not see any discrepancies on the bill and doesn’t have any issues that they need to discuss with the front desk, most hotels allow them to leave their hotel keys inside their room and leave.
4    Hallways

Guests from all over the world stay in hotels, so it is imperative that guests are considerate of everyone else who is staying there. If a guest is from halfway around the world, they may be sleeping in the middle of the afternoon, and they would not be too happy if they were woken up by someone running down the halls talking loudly. Of course, the same rules apply for the middle of the night too. Every guest should talk quietly when walking up and down the halls and no one should be letting their room door slam shut either.
5    Room Service

There may be a day when a guest needs to order room service, whether it is late at night when they arrive back to their room or early in the morning for breakfast. While it is not necessary for a guest to be completely dressed when their food arrives, they should wear a bathrobe over their pajamas. Sometimes the tip is already listed in the bill, but if it is not, a twenty percent tip is standard.
Room Service
6    Breakfast

Some hotels offer continental breakfasts or even full breakfasts for their guests, which is a wonderful way to save money when you travel. However, guests need to follow some guidelines. When a guest goes down for breakfast, they should be dressed for their day. No one should ever enter the breakfast room in their pajamas or bathrobe. Guests should take the food that they will be eating for breakfast, but no one should take additional food to take with them for the rest of the day.
7    Extra Trash

There may be times when guests have a little extra trash inside their rooms and instead of waiting for housekeeping to arrive the next day, they can call the front desk to see what they need to do to get it out of their room. Most hotels have a room where guests can place extra trash and if they don’t, they might be able to send a staff member up to remove it. One of those two options are always the best, because it will help keep the room clutter free and housekeeping will not need to wonder if they are really supposed to take this large bag, as it may or may not be filled with garbage.
Extra Trash
These are just a few of the hotel etiquette rules that every guest needs to be aware of and there may be a few more depending on where a person stays. If a guest isn’t sure about something, they should always ask the front desk, because the front desk staff usually knows the answers to many of these often-asked questions.

1 Comment

  1. Lyla Peterson
    September 9, 2019 - 12:12 pm

    I like the idea you mentioned of piling all of your used towels in the bathtub to make them easy to find. My husband and I are going on a trip for our anniversary, and I want to be sure to be a good guest at the hotel. I will keep your tips in mind and be sure to put all garbage in the trash can as well.


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *