Hotel Employee Perks: The Do’s and Don’ts Of Checking-in as a Hotelier
One of the sweetest employee perks of working in a hotel is the privilege of being able to enjoy hotel stays for a fraction of the price.
And this employee perk is enjoyed not just by the hotel employees but also by the friends and family members they bring with them.
It’s a nice way for Hoteliers to relax and enjoy being the guest for a change! However, employees also need to check their behavior when staying in a hotel. Whether they’re checking-in to their own hotel or somewhere else.
I learned this lesson the hard way when I first entered the hotel industry.
A few months into my first job, I decided to take advantage of this employee perk. One of my good friends was getting married and we wanted to throw her a small bridal shower. I used the employee rate to book a room for us all.
But things quickly got out of hand……
- One too many people joined the in-room party.
- A friend working in Guest Relations sent up a complimentary cake for the bridal shower. But being a new hotelier, and young, I foolishly posted a photo of the cake online, thanking my colleague and tagging her.
- Photos of the party were also posted on social media. Not only was I tagged but the photos clearly showed there were too many guests inside the hotel room.
- Because it was a full-on party, the room was left “jurassic” at the end. There were plates, leftover food, party decorations and confetti everywhere. And we just left it all in the room, when we checked out.
What was worse was they weren’t able to release that particular room on time because Housekeeping had to spend a lot more time than usual cleaning it!
The next morning, I was the topic of Departmental Briefings. I was the poster child for what not to do when you check in using the employee rate!
It wasn’t only me who got “an earful” from my manager. I found out that my Guest Relations friend also got in trouble for sending me the complimentary cake.
In my excitement to use my employee perks I got careless. And I did not think of the consequences of my actions, for myself or my hotelier colleagues. Believe me when I tell you, this type of behavior tends to leave a mark with your colleagues and tarnishes your image. It is also something that is not forgotten for a very long time.
Over the course of 15 years working in the hotel industry, I’ve had my share of hoteliers using their employee perks to check-in. And I’ve also encountered many guests on vacation who were hoteliers themselves. Some of these guests were absolute gems, while others were unbelievably entitled and demanding.
So, how should you act when it’s your turn to be a guest?
The answer is mind-numbingly simple really. Yet many people still seem to forget it. Always refer to the “Golden Rule.”
“Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.”
Think about this the next time you have a reservation to stay at a hotel:-
- How do you want your guests to treat you when you are working?
- What are the behaviors you hate to see in your guests?
- What types of guests make it on to your personal blacklist?
And if that is not enough, here are a few more simple reminders. Think of these as being the Hugot Hotelier guide to avoiding being “that employee” that everyone talks about during morning briefing.
Do efficiently provide all necessary requirements upon checking-in to make life easier for the staff assisting you.
You know the drill; IDs, confirmation letter, cash or credit card deposit. Prepare them all beforehand for a seamless transaction.
Do treat your colleagues with respect.
Just because you paid for a room does not give you the right to boss around the staff in the hotel. Remember that you still have to work with these people once your mini-vacation is over!
Do respect the rules and regulations of the hotel.
You may know a few holes and workarounds in the system, as a member of staff there, but taking advantage of this when you stay as a guest could create more problems for you than you think.
Do show your appreciation to the staff assisting you.
Most of the time, colleagues will not accept any tips but a sincere thank you will always be well appreciated. Sometimes, some snacks and goodies can help you show your gratitude well too!
Don’t pressure your colleagues to pull favors for you.
Yes, sometimes people get away with giving out free upgrades, extra amenities, complimentary cakes and gifts. Friends and sometimes subordinates will go the extra mile to make your stay special. However, this not only puts them in a situation, which could potentially get them into trouble, it also affects the business you’re trying so hard to help out, in the long run .
Don’t do anything that could potentially land you a spot in the Duty Manager’s log the next morning.
This includes noise complaints, smoking in non-smoking rooms, breaking things in the room, doing illegal activities and being a nuisance guest in general.
It’s pretty common sense. You don’t want to lose your job for one night of carefree “I’m a hotel guest, F you all” kind of stay, right?
Employee guests are usually one of two things. They are either super polite, patient, understanding and kind, because they know what it’s like to be on the other side and want to make things as easy as possible on the employees.
Or, they could be the polar opposite: demanding, entitled, always looking for freebies and upgrades and anything they could latch their grubby little hands on. All under the excuse that they know the limits of what hotel employees are allowed to give to guests. They brag to their family and friends what they can get away with because of their “connections.”
Nobody likes the latter. And aside from being the talk of the town, pushing your luck and exhibiting bad behavior during your hotel stay, paid or not, could potentially have negative effects on your image, reputation and job.
If you are going to use your employee perks and book a stay in your hotel, or any other hotel, aim to be the type of guest we love to have. I’m pretty sure, speaking from a hotelier standpoint, that your colleagues will want to make your stay as perfect as possible without you even having to ask for anything.