4. Don’t Use the Throw Pillows
Don’t ever sleep on them. In fact, toss them off your bed immediately. That’s because they can harbor some really nasty germs. “If you notice the throw pillows on the bed or the couch have no removable sleeves, you can be sure they are never thoroughly cleaned,” Kashlee Kucheran, seasoned traveler and co-owner of traveloffpath.com, told Reader’s Digest. The hotel will replace them after the stains and smells get to be too much. But, steer clear of them in the meantime because “you can bet there have been many faces, bottoms, and other things lounging on those pillows,” Kucheran added.
TIP: Call ahead and ask that the throw pillows be removed from the room prior to your arrival.
3. Don’t Use the “Please Clean Room” Sign
Sure you want your room cleaned, but do you really want to announce to the whole world–especially to the burglars–that your room full of valuable possessions is empty? No, hanging that sign up doesn’t necessarily mean that the room is empty, but it most likely is–and thieves know that. So, if your room is in need of a good cleaning, try this instead: call the front desk directly and ask them to send someone to clean your room.
2. Don’t Sleep on the Ground Floor or Top Floor
According to The Sun, a Marine Corps veteran and former CIA detective says that it’s best to avoid sleeping in ground and top-floor hotel bedrooms. That’s because you are the most vulnerable in these rooms if by chance a terror attack occurs. “The ground floor is readily accessible to intruders and the top floor does not allow any [maneuvering] room, Drew Dwyer told The Sun. “The first or second floors allow access for most third world country emergency vehicles.” Dwyer also recommends that guests request a copy of the fire escape plan at check-in time and keep a small “escape bag” packed at all times.
1. Don’t Use the Hotel Wi-Fi to Send Sensitive Information
It’s incredibly easy to hack public Wi-Fi hotspots, so sending sensitive information over them is a definite no-no, Harold Li, vice president of ExpressVPN, told Reader’s Digest. “You might as well be yelling your passwords and bank details down the hall,” Li added. Instead, use encryption to shield your online activity when you’re logging into your bank account or sending other sensitive information. Or, if it’s not something of the utmost importance, you could just wait until you get to a location with a more secure connection.
Scary isn’t it? Especially when you think about the number of times you’ve done some of the things on this list and had no idea you were at risk. And, if you’re looking for more practical hotel room advice, find out why you should always check under the covers, under the bed, in the tub and anywhere else you can think to look when you first arrive at your hotel room. Thanks for reading, and be safe!