Erin Andrews Case Raises Concern for Female Hotel Guests

erin-andrews-photoWe have all seen many stories by now about the female ESPN reported who was videotaped through a peephole in her hotel room.  The reporter was videotaped naked in her room at a Marriott hotel by another guest who requested a room adjacent to her.  He then allegedly jimmied open the peephole on her door, recorded videos of her, and uploaded them onto the internet. 

Yahoo news posted a new story about hotel security that is appearing everywhere.  You can read the entire story here.  Be sure to check out the story and train your front desk to address the concerns that guests will have.  Among the concerns in the story: hotel policies on requesting adjacent rooms, policies on security cameras in the hallways, and policies for announcing room numbers out loud and transferring telephone calls without verifying room numbers.

Hotel Crime Rises In Recession according to USA Today

In an article that may soon appear in the newspaper you deliver to your guests, the USA Today is reporting that Hotel Crime Rises In Recession. The article can be found on USA Today’s website.  The article says that tough times causes people to do desperate things.  The article also blames hotels for reducing security staff during the recession or having them do other things such as deliver room service or help with housekeeping requests.  The article provides some good recommendations to improve security such as:

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  1. Require all employees to politely confront non-guests in hallways and ask them if they need assistance.
  2. Keep room number private (the article mentions breakfast servers asking for guest’s room numbers).
  3. Limiting access to guest floors to only guests.

In addition, we recommend:

  1. Have a consistent policy on how GSAs handle lost or non-working guest room keys.
  2. Inspect all guest room doors to make sure they automatically close and lock from a 45 degree angle.
  3. Do a complete background check on every employee before you hire them.  Conduct safety and security training before new employee’s first day on the job.
  4. Do a quarterly security training at your all employee meeting.  Be sure to include employees from areas that  you outsource such as parking and security.
  5. Make sure guest areas such as guest room elevators and floors, swimming pools, and fitness centers can only be accessed by guest room keys.

Guest Room Knocking Etiquette

Hotel-Room-Door-HandleHaving stayed in many hotels, we have experienced our share of disturbances.Unfortunately, many of these disturbances have been caused by the hotel’s staff.  The most awkward and uncomfortable ones come from the knocks and entries at the guest room door.  People treat their guest rooms in a hotel like their bedrooms at home.  Unfortunately, they do not think about the fact that many employees in that hotel have a key to these bedrooms.  On the other hand, many hotel employees do not think of hotel guest rooms as being private to the hotel guests.  Three knocks and a quick key swipe and they have entered the room, too quick for the guest to object.

Most guests like to be comfortable in their rooms and are not in their normal, public attire.  It is very embarrassing to be seen that way in an unplanned fashion.  Make sure that all employees in your hotel are properly trained in the etiquette of how to properly knock and enter a guest’s room.  Here are some the tips to remember: Continue reading

Basic Safety and Security for your Guests

Our analysts have stayed at many hotels so far in 2008.  During those visits, the lack of general safety and security really stands out.  Though we do test for some loss prevention standards, in many instances, things just happen that make it really scary to be staying in a hotel.  Many of those things are due a lack of employee training and standards.

safetyIn one instance, one of our analysts had their car valet parked, she approached the attendant and told him that she had lost the ticket.  He simply asked for the analyst’s last name and retrieved the vehicle that matched.  He did not check ID, match the name with a room number, or anything else of the sort.  The analyst should have asked for the Lamborghini sitting in the driveway!

During another visit, an analyst left the room to visit the restaurant.  Housekeeping cleaned the room while the analyst was gone.  Upon returning, the room door was not closed, but barely open.  The room door did not close automatically as it should have.  She was very surprised that her  laptop and personal belongings were still in the room.

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