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13 Things You Should Never Ask Hotel Staff

Think twice before asking these questions that may come across as rude, unrealistic, or won't get you the results your after.

close up of white bed with pillow and blanket, shallow depth of field Jantana Phattha/Shutterstock

Can we get a room with an ocean view?

When you’re booking a stay at a hotel offering water-front views, it will be listed as a room option. However, if you don’t happen to see these bedrooms being offered, it’s likely because there are no ocean views. Paige T., who works in group reservations for five large hotels in Orlando, Florida, says people often assume you can spot the beach from anywhere in the Sunshine State despite Florida being hundreds of miles wide in some areas. Check out 50+ hotel rooms with views to add to your bucket list.

Smiling hotel manager handing over a door key to a woman customer after checking her in to the hotel, selective focus to his hand and the keystockfour/Shutterstock

Why don’t I get those perks included with my stay?

Guests at luxury resorts or tourist attraction hotels may get an upgrade or two thrown into their stay, including discounts for certain activities, express passes, or free shows. It’s important you clarify upfront what is included with your stay, or else you may sour your mood—and that of the hotel staff—by assuming other benefits are included in your stay, then blaming the staff for your misunderstanding. If you want a free hotel upgrade, check out these secret tips straight from hotel managers.

Vacancy signStacieStauffSmith Photos/Shutterstock

Can I extend my stay even though it says no vacancies?

Unfortunately, just because you’re staying in a room tonight, it doesn’t mean you’re guaranteed that room for eternity. Front desk supervisor Caela G. says most hotels won’t be able to make a room available, even if you’re already staying in it, until the next guest cancels or doesn’t show up for their reservation. Booking a hotel soon? Here’s the hotel booking scan you definitely need to know about.

Traveler use map on mobile phone app to search for route location of place with gps on street when travel in city,Technology in lifestyle weedezign/Shutterstock

How close are we to that popular tourist spot?

Depends on what your definition of “close” is. Not to mention, chances are you chose that hotel because it was close to said tourist spot so you already know it’s either a few steps away or at least a short public transportation trip or Uber ride away. While most hotel staff know that helping tourists is part of the job, they wouldn’t mind guests doing their own research so they’re not so dependent on hotel concierge guidance, says Sophia B., a consultant for a hotel in New Orleans.

Guest at hotel reception paying with check during check-inRobert Kneschke/Shutterstock

Why is my rate different from Sally’s? We have the same exact rooms!

Have you ever noticed how airline prices are constantly changing throughout the year? Well, hotel rates are no different. The price you pay will depend on when you booked and who you booked through, and no rate is guaranteed says Caela G. Some hotel chains have rewards or assurance programs like Marriott’s Look No Further Best Rate Guarantee, which as the name suggests, secures the best rate for members. Check out these 16 tips for saving a ton of money on hotel rooms.

Egg fried in a heart-shaped toast cutout sprinkled with bacon crumbs, cracked pepper and thymeLeigh Anne Meeks/Shutterstock

Why don’t you have an American style breakfast?

Just because a hotel is in the United States doesn’t mean the meals will always be country classics. You wouldn’t expect a Chinese restaurant to serve Mexican food, despite it being popular. Similarly, certain hotel brands will have distinct styles and, with that, offer different twists to American classics, says Quinton McCoy, a food and beverage supervisor at a hotel.

Cropped image of a young hotel maid bringing clean towels and other suppliesDean Drobot/Shutterstock

Why can’t I take stuff off the housekeeping cart? I need it.

Sure, there are some items you can “steal” from hotel rooms. However, housekeepers are often on tight schedules and may need those extra towels or mini-shampoos for the next room. If you need items, ask if it’s OK first or call the front desk or housekeeping directly to make your request. Don’t miss these 13 amazing hotel amenities that will make you want to book a room ASAP.

Businessman in suit expecting receptionistOlena Yakobchuk/Shutterstock

Why can’t I check in now/early?

Hotels have set check in and check out times for a reason; same goes for the housekeeping schedule. If you arrive hours early, the room you booked could still be messy from the previous guest. “We’re trying to make sure that you have the best experience and are checking into a room that’s clean and ready for you,” says Sophia B. After all, you wouldn’t want to sleep in a bed that doesn’t have clean sheets, would you?

Closeup of Chauffeur opening car door with glovePapzi555/Shutterstock

Why are you a valet-only hotel?

If a hotel says it only offers valet parking, it’s likely because there is no parking available for guests that can be guaranteed, therefore, they can’t make it an option. Hotel staff also cannot make parking recommendations that could end up becoming a liability for the company, says Gina D., a hotel receptionist. If you want free parking, you’ll need to find a hotel that offers it or park on the street at your own risk.

towel in the bathroom Longchalerm Rungruang/Shutterstock

I know it’s late, but can you bring this up to my room?

Ayoka B., a front desk night auditor at a large hotel in Richmond, Virginia, says 99 percent of the time, she’s on duty alone, checking in guests, cleaning the lobby and common areas, doing laundry, making sure a hot breakfast is ready at 6 a.m., and more. So while she’s happy to provide extra towels, toothbrushes, etc. if you’re willing to head to the front desk to collect them, delivering said items to a guest’s room simply isn’t possible. Find out the 22 ways to make your hotel stay safe and healthy.

A man working on a white desk with a laptop.mirtmirt/Shutterstock

I booked through a third party site and my charge is incorrect. Can you fix it?

Unfortunately, no. Hotels pay between 10 and 30 percent commission on booking sites and don’t manage the transactions that guests make with those third-party companies. If you’ve booked through a site like Expedia, Orbitz, or, you’ll need to contact them directly if there are any issues with your transaction.

white airport bus close upAleksSafronov/Shutterstock

Can your airport shuttle take us downtown?

Many hotels are happy to provide complimentary travel to and from an airport. However, these shuttles are designated for just that—travel to and from the airport. If a guest would like to be taken elsewhere, they should order a taxi, Uber, or Lyft and skip the pointless request of asking the airport shuttle to veer elsewhere just for them. Check out 12 of the world’s strangest and most unique hotels in the world.

african woman on the sofa and using her tablet. Vip hotelAndrii Kobryn/Shutterstock

Why do we have to pay for WiFi?

Providing Internet to tens or hundreds of guests daily isn’t cheap; the hotel paid to install the Internet and needs to continually pay for usage and upkeep. Costs are either added on a user basis, meaning those who want to use it pay for it, or it’s folded into the overall rate. It’s worth noting that some hotels offer free WiFi to their reward members, so ask if that’s an option for lowering your bill. Here are 20 other secrets hotels don’t want you to know.

Noelia Trujillo
I have seven years experience in both print and online communications and currently work as a Media and Promotions Officer at a regional not-for-profit in New South Wales, Australia, where I manage the public relations, social media, marketing, advertising, promotions and digital design. I am also a freelance writer, editor and translator (Spanish/English). My work has appeared on,, and GQ Australia.