Hotel – Motel Safety Tips

When choosing a motel or hotel, you should all ways ask the following questions:(1) What type of on-site security do you have? (2) Are your rooms inside or outside rooms? (3) What type of security measures do you have in place for each room?Guests who stay above the first floor greatly reduce their chances of being a victim of a crime from outside forces.UPON ARRIVALDo a visual check of the layout in case of emergency. What kind of lighting has been installed in the parking lot, around the grounds, pool and rooms? Check your room to see what security measures have been installed.Explain to the children what you are looking for so they understand the importance of it, and explain to them to never open the door (even if they think they are helping) before you approve it.A chain type lock is one that does not provide sufficient security and gives the false sense that it is safe to open the door. (not a good device to use at home either) Peepholes are good and should be used before opening the door to see who is there.There are two types of peepholes: one is called a 160 that just shows who is standing in front of it and the other is called a 180 that gives you a much wider view of who is standing in front of the door and beside it. A lot of motels and hotels are putting two peepholes in the door: one is placed lower for children (a very good safety feature). Deadbolts are a good safety device and should always be used. If you travel a lot and want extra security, a device called a doorjamb is sold at Lowe’s for about $ 20.00. It fits under the doorknob and wedges between the floor and the doorknob or handle. It folds down and is easy to carry and can be used at home as well. Do not answer the door by just opening it.

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First, find out who is there. If the person identifies himself as an employee call the front desk to confirm it.Seventy percent of communication is non-verbal. In other words, if you show fear opening the door, it already gives the intruder the upper hand in the situation. Use peepholes first. Moving the curtain back and looking out the window is as bad as opening the door. A smooth talker that sees you are startled or frightened might be able to get you to open the door. The face to face gives him or her the advantage.Motels or hotels just off the interstate are perfect targets for criminals of all kinds (thieves, child predators and many others). Traveling families make the perfect victims, They are not familiar with the area and it will be harder to get them back to testify in court. Inside the room secrets When you enter the room, look under the counter where the sink is and against that wall usually where the two rooms join. You are looking for a camera or a peephole. Usually there is a crawl space for plumbing between rooms.I have actually seen cases where an employee had punched a hole in the drywall under the counter to look into the room: it gives a perfect view of almost the whole room. If you should happen to discover this in your room, call law enforcement not the front desk, make sure a report is made, let law enforcement make the contact with the establishment and contact your attorney. Also find another place to stay. Guest that stay in an inside room are less likely to be the victim than ones that stays where the room opens to the parking lot. Remember that not all, if any, motels /hotels conduct background checks on all of their employees.A device can be bought on eBay for about $ 49.00 that detects hidden cameras in rooms, tanning beds, changing rooms, etc. This is good investment. You have been told for years never leave valubles in your room when you go out, which includes going to the pool. Now you need to add to never leave your identification in a room when you are not there.This leaves you with two choices:

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(1) Carry it to the pool or other areas with you. (2) Lock it in the trunk of your vehicle.I am not sure about trusting in-room safes, you would need to ask the mangers about the safety features, If possible make sure no one else has a key or combination to it. Never prop the door open to go to ice machine or your vehicle; it gives a thief a chance to obtain entry into your room. Make sure to keep the room key or room card with you at all times. If lost or misplaced, notify the front desk at once. The lodging industry has a liability and responsibility to keep its guest as safe as possible and most try very hard to do just that.Most industries have what is called industry standards by which they set acceptable operating procedures. I have been asked often about the use of personal alarms in a hotel/motel room. If you use one, the goal would be to get the activated device outside of the room so others could hear it. Never let a child go any where with out an adult that you really trust. They are targets to criminals.If you stay at a motel/hotel that does not have any of these security features, I would consider making the stay a very, very short one or continue on trying to find a motel/hotel with the adequate safety measures.