Not Always More Where That Came From: The Most Stolen Hotel Items in Britain

This is not what the first hoteliers meant when they wanted people to take the experience home.

Though different in several respects, hotels and hostels share the common ground of losing common items. Toiletries are fair game. We will not hold it against you for taking home the complimentary shampoo. But, British lodging establishments regularly lose other non-complimentary things. One in every ten occupants is in the habit of taking items, and the numbers in this list are from these enterprising Britons. Not pointing any fingers, but we could have sworn we had these things before these people started moving in:

  1. Towels and linen. We almost can’t blame people for this one. It is a minor unspoken metric of quality for businesses of our kind, so it is no surprise that 68 percent of hotel thieves see towels as an easy, soft target.
  2. Batteries and light bulbs. This is a bit worrying, but a fact we have learned to accept. After all, if 57 percent of people nick remote control batteries and lamp bulbs, instead of being frustrated, management usually chooses to lighten up.
  3. Food and Drinks. More than half (51%) of people apparently bring takeout at checkout. We actually wonder what the personal storage limitations are. Rest assured our soups are safe.
  4. Around 45 percent of diners pocket the silverware—here is hoping those pockets are not too tight.
  5. People aren’t even trying to hide it now. Take note that hotel curtains are heavy and huge, so taking them down from near-ceiling anchor points is a feat we both dislike and admire.
  6. Picture frames. Really? Here we were thinking that they would be safe in the digital age. Guess we were wrong. People still actually print pictures out.
  7. For the people who are unaware, these are not complimentary. This is the true meal ticket for thieving guests. One example is a $250,000 Rembrandt painting that went missing in a Los Angeles hotel.
  8. Nineteen out of every one hundred Britons actually stuffed a used kettle into their luggage. We are done.

We are in the business of constantly cleaning, refilling, cooking, re-purposing, ironing and reserving for our guests. There will always be people who will take advantage of free stuff, and those who will go awful lengths to enforce their twisted definition of free. Hoteliers everywhere would love to say that ‘we are not having any of it’ in a figurative sense, but we now know how that goes.

LHA London has provided quality accommodations for 75 years, and we intend to keep the streak alive. Contact us to book your room now. Kettles are subject to availability.