After working as a hotel/hostel receptionist I’ve managed to pick up a few useful tips that I never knew could be possible as a traveller, one of them is extending your hotel check out time.
Now this may not work at all hotels, but for the large majority that have the average room capacity, it’s mostly possible.
Please note that this rarely works for hostels as the cleaning structure is a lot different, but for most Hotels this will work.
Check out time is normally around 10:00, 10:30 or 11:00am, this is to ensure that everyone can check out on time, so hotel staff can prepare the rooms ready for the next guest.
Not all rooms need to be checked out straight away and you will often find a line at the reception desk around this time while travellers prepare for onward journeys.
Some guests have already checked out early to make a flight connection so rooms are already lined up to be clean.
Also, some rooms won’t be needed straight away as it might not be booked until later that day so they can be cleaned last on the schedule.
However, missing, check out time might incur a fine as the room might be needed for the next guest to check in.
All you simply have to do is be nice, that’s the trick, hotel receptionists are lovely friendly people when you’re nice to them. I’ve found on my travels politeness is a wonderful thing and if your happy and polite to staff then they will be nice to you back. I’ve found service in hospitality is always top notch when you’re a nice customer and adding a friendly conversation and being nice goes a long way.
If the hotel is small or they operate a tight ship, it might not be possible, but some hotels allow staff to give the go ahead for an extended stay at no extra cost for a limited few.
If you join a large hotel chain loyalty scheme this also gives you some breathing space to get an extension. It doesn’t take that much time to sign up and shows that you want to be a loyal customer.
Same goes for repeat customers, if you’re often staying at the same hotel loyalty goes a long way and they are willing to make your stay extra special to retain your business.
So next time you check into a hotel, just ask if it would be possible to extend check out time an extra hour because your flight is not till later and hotel staff will try their best to see if this is possible.
This may mean they can look on the system and put you in a room which isn’t vacant currently after you check out so you can extend your stay that little longer.
Normally they have a note system to tell other staff members on your check out that you will be an hour later, this means you can have an extra lay in, nice shower and have some extra packing time before you depart.
All you simply have to do in most cases is, just ask nicely and the hotel can see what they can do.
With a large portion of travellers not knowing this handy tip, they will have other guests checking out on time to prepare the rooms for cleaning and then schedule your room last on the list.
Hotel staff will not be able to clean all the rooms at once so adding your room last in most cases is possible, you just have to ask.
Just remember that they have gone the extra mile to help you out, so do ensure that you’re ready to check out at the extended time so they don’t get into trouble for giving you this privilege.
Worst case they will just say no but if you can extend that extra hour just by asking nicely then what do you have to lose?
Hope you found this tip useful and enjoy your next hotel stay!