Tag: Hotel SafesView All Tags
There's a good chance this has happened to you before: you've gotten off a long flight, checked into your hotel and, ready to explore your destination, you go to lock up your personal effects and notice your phone, laptop or tablet are pretty drained for power. Now, the dilemma: do you run the risk of leaving your electronics to charge out in the open or lock them in the safe?
On a recent visit to Hong Kong we stayed at the city's ultra-hip W Hong Kong. Upon checking in and exploring the room, we had this same situation where we needed some juice, but wanted to tuck all of our stuff away in the in-room safe. Once we popped opened the safe, we found the holy grail of hotel safes: it had its very own power-point! Problem solved.
Now, we're aware that not all hotels have this little perk, but we also know that some hoteliers have thought about their guest's battery power. Let us know in the comments below if you've come across something similar elsewhere and we'll make sure that those hotels get mad props for considering the 'little things'.
We've long been suspicious of the in-room hotel safe after personally encountering safes that simply didn't work and after hearing several tales of the safe getting robbed, like this one. But if you were still trusting the hotel safe to keep your valuables protected, this story may really cause you to think again.
At the posh Peninsula Hong Kong, one of the most high-tech hotels in the world, a man wearing hotel slippers tricked the staff into thinking he was a guest, not only gaining access to a hotel room but also getting the password to the in-room safe. Here's how he did it:
"Speaking in English, he told hotel staff that he had lost his room key and demanded another one," the [South China Morning Post] cited a Hong Kong police officer as saying, adding that the man provided details of the 47-year-old male occupant including name and birthdate, without saying how he had obtained such information.
After entering the room, the man "telephoned the front desk from the room saying he had forgotten the password of the safe and asked for assistance to open it", the officer was quoted by the SCMP as saying.
The thief managed to walk away with about $4,900 in cash, a computer, a wallet and a piece of luggage. So far, no arrests have been made but we're pretty sure that couple will never, ever, ever, use the hotel safe again. Or maybe, Hong Kong just needs to beef up their hotel security. After all, a HotelChatter tipster was able to uncover where NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden was hiding out, thanks to a very nice hotel operator.
Traveling with some pretty nice stuff but don't want to use the hotel safe? Read our tips after the jump!
What you don't want to see in the hotel safe when you've returned to your room.
Last week we talked about what guests were stealing from their hotels and it turns out, a lot of you are stealing way more than the bath toiletries and the slippers. (Seriously, how do you smuggle lamps and artwork out of a hotel? Extra large suitcases, we guess!)
But today, we've got a more serious side of hotel theft to talk about--the hotel safe, as in what to do when the hotel safe isn't safe?
A reader emailed us from the Hotel du Louvre, a five-star property in Paris located near three of the city's biggest landmarks--the Louvre, the Opéra Garnier and the Palais Royal. Room rates here start around 370 euros a night (or about $483). But just because it's a fancy spot, doesn't mean your valuables are safe, even when you put them in the safe. Our distraught reader tells us her tale:
During a recent hotel stay, we were relieved to find a safe large enough to accommodate our laptop, camera, and all the accompanying wires. Later on, as we were running late to go meet friends for brunch, we were less relieved when we realized that the safe was low on battery, and had no way of locking.
In a more relaxed circumstance, we simply would have called down to the concierge for a new battery to be installed, waited a few minutes, double-checked the lock, and been on our merry way.
But in a pinch, we had to get a little crafty. Here's our guide on inconspicuous hotel room hiding places, where your goods are least likely to be found by a fiddling hotel maid or otherwise sticky-fingered staff member.