WORK SMARTER NOT HARDER:  What Is OK to Take from a Hotel Room and What Is NOT

The Expert’s Guide to What You Can and Can’t Remove From a Hotel Room

When you’re staying in a hotel or vacation rental, items are likely provided for your convenience…  But which ones are “complimentary” – meaning that you may keep them – and which are property of the provider (not yours to take)?

Mark Johnson, the founder of H18YC, has become an expert about what you’re allowed to take from your hotel room as well as what you should leave behind.

Toiletries and Stationery:  

You can take home shampoo, conditioner, soap, and body lotion so long as they’re single-use toiletries in small packages.  The costs of supplying these will have been factored into the overall price of your room.  However, if you see that your hotel room features larger bottles, especially if they’re attached to the wall, you should not remove them.

Stationery (like paper, pens, envelopes, postcards) is free to use and keep.  It’s usually branded with the hotel logo, so it provides free advertising.  However, you shouldn’t take home any leather-bound notepads.

Food, Drink or Complimentary Gifts

You’re allowed to keep any small items of food or drink, which have been provided, in your room.  Common examples include biscuits, teabags, coffee sachets, coffee creamers, and sugar packets.  However, any drinks in mini fridges will likely need to be paid for, at checkout.

If something is complimentary, it’s yours.  It may be a chocolate bar (or individual chocolates placed on your pillows) or something helpful like a water bottle.  If you told the hotel, beforehand, that you’re celebrating your honeymoon or wedding anniversary, you may receive a free bottle of champagne.

Miscellaneous Convenience Items

If your room provides a small sewing kit or dry-cleaning bags, they’re free to keep.  So are slippers, as they’re only designed for single use.

Linens And Clothing-Related Items

Do not help yourself to any linens, including towels, sheets, and blankets.  The same thing applies to bedding like pillows and duvets, as well as clothing items such as bathrobes.  The iron, ironing board, and wooden hangers also all need to remain in the room.

Electronic Goods

Don’t remove cable boxes, hairdryers, or lightbulbs.  Keep the TV and its remote (complete with batteries) in your hotel room, plus any clock/radio or tablet.

General Items

Never return home with hotel brand glassware, bottles or mugs.  Keep paintings on the walls – and any Bible on the bedside table, or in the drawer.

Mark says, “It’s best for you and the hotel if you know what to take or to leave; then you can fully enjoy your stay without later being accused of theft.  Before you put anything you’re not sure about into your suitcase, remember you can always ask hotel staff if it’s okay to take.”

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