Have You Ever Found Your Hotel Room Open?

As a woman and sometimes-solo traveler, I've often got safety on the brain. On a recent trip, I came back to my hotel room to discover it open. I thought I'd share the story here because although it's not something that had ever happened to me personally before, it's not unheard of either.

I had spent the evening out with friends and came back to my hotel room at about 10:30 p.m. As I reached for the doorknob to I scan my key card, the door fell open—it hadn't been shut all the way. I paused, door partway open, key card still out, processing the fact that my room had not just been unlocked while I was out but was actually open.

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My first instinct was to assume that a hotel employee had probably been into the room for some kind of turn-down service and had failed to latch the door behind them (or that I had left it open, though I'm generally careful about that sort of thing). But the part of me responsible for flossing and looking both ways before I cross the street thought, even so, let's take a short walk to the front desk and see if I can get someone to check the room.

So I shut the door, making sure it latched, and then walked back to the front desk. The hotel staff was appropriately concerned without being alarming and within minutes, I was walking back toward my room with two polo-shirt clad security guards. They did a sweep of the room, the bathroom, and the closets. As I entered the room afterward, I noticed all the signs—bedside lamp on, bed turned down, bathroom towels tidied—that a hotel employee had been in to prepare the room for evening.  Even so, I was glad to have the security guards do a check since anyone could have come in to the open room after it had been left open.

While I did a quick valuables check, the hotel security guards plugged a little machine into the card-scanning slot on the door that allowed them to download the key-card history so they could double-check that it had been left ajar by a hotel employee (and presumably talk to the employee about double-checking that doors latch) and not anyone else. That any hotel door with a key card has its own electronic record of comings and goings wasn't something I had thought about before, but it seems like a handy thing to know going forward.

The next morning, as I was leaving my room again, I experimented with the door and noticed that because of the ventilation system in the room, the door actually came up against a bit of resistance just before it latched. Since strong ventilation systems are a pretty standard part of newer hotels, I'd imagine this sort of thing is getting more common.

Have you ever had a similar experience? Share it with me and other readers below. Be sure to mention what you did and if you'd recommend (or not) it to others.

Read comments or add your own insight!
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