5 Things the Hotel Next Door Knows About You

Getting ready to go on vacation? Planning to stay in a hotel room? Think you're entitled to a little privacy once you've handed over your hard-earned cash - or equally hard-to-pay-off plastic? Think again!

In fact, the hotel staff, and most of the guests, will be monitoring your every move. Whether this invasion of your personal space is official hotel policy, or just the unavoidable observations of too many people cramped into too-small of a space, it's enough to throw you off of traveling even faster than a bed-bug infestation.

While we expect most businesses to track our spending habits electronically, your friendly hotel staff won't need any complicated tools to know exactly what you're up to. Let's take a look at how many ways the typical person can use their five senses to breach privacy in a typical hotel:

1. Fly on the Wall

Have you ever wished you were a fly on the wall, so you could hear all the juicy details of a heated conversation going on in another room? Well, if you have, just stay a few days in any hotel you come across. Even the ritziest decor scheme can't cover up the fact that sound-proofing wasn't high on the list of priorities when the building was designed.

If you get into a squabble with your significant other in your hotel room, don't be surprised by a few dirty looks when you leave your room. Did your dinner not agree with you? You won't even have to ask anyone for their favorite remedy.

Trying to snag that last ticket for your favorite concert? After you discuss it in the hotel, don't bother. It's a sure bet that another fan overheard and beat you to the punch.

2. Take a Picture, It'll Last Longer

Think no one will notice if you take a peak outside your door wearing just a bathrobe, or less? Don't count on it. As soon as the door cracks, all eyes within viewing distance will instantly turn in your direction. Does this mean everyone is a peeping Tom? Well, maybe some come close, but even the best of us give into human nature, and look at whatever attracts our attention.

So, you've checked carefully. The coast is clear. No one is in sight. You're sure you can get to the pool or hot tub without anyone seeing those last five pounds of holiday indulgence before you slip into the water in last-year's bikini.

Oops! You forgot all about those pesky security cameras! Somewhere, deep within the bowels of the hotel, some security geek is ogling your grainy image on an out-of-date monitor. If you're lucky, he's not saving a copy for later.

3. Is it Hot in Here?

Do you really want some stranger knowing you spend 45 minutes, or more, in the shower? In most hotel rooms, the ventilation system leaves a lot to be desired.

As the humidity fills up the neighboring units, and the other guests begin to feel uncomfortable on several levels; they'll begin to wonder exactly what you're doing in there. If you're lucky, they'll only complain about the obvious lack of hot water.

4. So, What Did You Have for Dinner?

Your secret midnight cravings will no longer be a mystery after you leave that dirty room-service tray in the hall for an early morning pickup. While this might not be a problem if you were good and had a healthy snack, do you really need everyone to know you noshed on cheeseburgers, fries, and a double portion of that to-die-for chocolate cake just a few hours after you dined in the hotel restaurant?

A few haters will definitely decide that's why you can't fit into that bikini you tried to hide on the way to the pool!


5. What's That Smell?

Whether you like to sneak a smoke before bed, burn a little incense to set the mood, you certainly don't need everyone to know. Even if you open a window and turn on a fan, the aroma will no doubt be detected by other guests, the hotel staff, or the clean-up crew.

With the growing popularity of smoke-free rooms, this could even be a reason to toss you out the door without a refund. As embarrassing as that can be, what about other smells? Any strong smell will travel through the ventilation system. Remember how quickly that shower steamed up everyone else's room?

What to Do

If this little discussion has left you in a travel quandary, don't fret about it. As luck would have it, there are always alternatives to snoopy neighbors when it comes to lodging options. Skip the crowded check-in desk, the slack service, and the prying eyes (and more) by renting an actual home for your next vacation.

Once you look into vacation home rentals, you might even be amazed at how affordable they are compared to a hotel room. Just imagine how stress-free your next getaway can be when you have all the space in the world to stretch out and relax, with absolutely no one to get in your way or monitor your actions.

If you choose well, you can even slip out to that private pool or hot tub in anything you choose - and no one will be the wiser!


Although your life may not be filled with enough intrigue for a PI to slip a twenty to some sleazy hotel concierge for spying on your every move, why pay for the privilege of what amounts to voyeurism and stalking?

From check-in to past the time you check out, your slightest move is subject to inspection. What's the weirdest thing you've ever seen or done in a hotel?

  1. http://farm1.static.flickr.com/149/346924854_04ce1d07c7.jpg
  2. http://i.telegraph.co.uk/telegraph/multimedia/archive/01248/woman_blushing_1248166c.jpg
  3. http://cache4.asset-cache.net/xc/82367612.jpg?v=1&c=IWSAsset&k=2&d=8A33AE939F2E01FFF86593722DD125E1FFC3DF0EEFDF482E02D783A70B30C8FB 
  4. http://www.flickr.com/photos/zackzen/2643970889/in/photostream/
  5. http://www.flickr.com/photos/joehowell/2314400543/in/photostream/
  6. http://www.flickr.com/photos/oddwick/2925579115/in/photostream/

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