What nimble-fingered guests pilfer most from hotels

Reports suggest that the British and Germans lead in stealing items from hotel rooms. Photo: iStock/Mystockimages

This is a nice hotel, with plenty of amenities. I know how we can make our money back.

Remember this dialogue of Ross Geller, following which he goes on to pilfer numerous items from an expensive hotel, where he stayed with Chandler? The fans of the legendary TV series 'Friends' will not forget the episode and how they get caught. Stealing soap, shampoo, and lotion items from hotels is a norm for some guests, for they feel they make the most of their money when they bring home this stuff. Not many consider it even stealing. But, did you know who tops the list of this activity and what are the most commonly stolen items?

Surprisingly, these thefts occur most frequently in four-star and five-star hotels. Toiletries such as soap, a comb, and shampoo are the most commonly stolen articles. However, the list does not end there; pens and towels also fall into this category. A recent survey of hotel managers brought attention to the fact that guest theft, which has become a headache for star hotels, is a serious matter. The survey, conducted by Wellness Haven, included four-star and five-star luxury hotels in Asia and Europe. As the star rating changes, so do the stolen items; things stolen from four-star hotels may not be taken from five-star hotels.

Towels and bathrobes stolen most
Towels and bathrobes top the list of the most stolen items in hotels. Following these, hangers, pens, and cosmetics are the most frequently pilfered items. However, some guests go beyond these small thefts. Coolly, they take away fittings from the bathroom without a second thought. Items such as the showerhead, hydro massage shower, toilet seat, and sink, which a normal person would never consider stealing, are filched without any hesitation by some guests.

Most filchers are German and British guests
Believe it or not, reports suggest that the British and Germans lead in stealing items from hotel rooms. In the survey, Wellness Haven found that bath towels, bathrobes, cosmetics, and toiletries are the most frequently stolen items. Guests from the US prefer to take away pillows and batteries, Austrians favour coffee machines, Italians carry wine glasses as a memento of the hotel they stayed in, and hairdryers are preferred by the Swiss. Meanwhile, the French are not satisfied with these things; they are interested in TV sets and remote controls. The case of the Dutch is a bit more peculiar; their weaknesses are light bulbs and toilet paper.

A total of 740 four-star hotels and 636 five-star hotels participated in the survey. The Wellness Haven survey aimed to gauge different types of guest behaviour. Wellness Haven reports that five-star hotels are six times more likely to have tablet computers stolen than in four-star hotels. Similarly, another weakness of those who visit luxury hotels is the artwork displayed there. Not just that, TV sets, coffee makers, and mattresses are also frequently stolen from five-star hotels. The management of 1,376 hotels from Europe participated in the survey.

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