Has anyone had an experience with valuable personal items missing from their room? I recently had a bad experience at a Fairfield Inn while on business travel and am greatly disappointed that Customer Care kept referring me to the local manager who denied any responsibility.
Did you report it to the police? I think that needs to be the first step in any case of stolen valuables, while at the same time talking to the manager. I've been lucky enough never to have anything stolen, but I also use the room safe whenever one is available for cameras, medications, jewelry and sometimes my computer.
Hate to say it but if there is not an in-room safe or one at the front desk, I take any valuables with me.
On vacations to Europe, there typically are in-room safes, so I'm OK there. On business in the U.S., there typically are not in-room safes, so my valuables are in my briefcase or in my rental car trunk.
I agree with the latest posts. I find in Europe I've never had a problem, but as some of our members have said that is possible because each room usually has a safe that is quite large and can hold a portable computer and many other items.
It's unfortunate that we ever have to deal with this, but my advice is always be careful first, if something valuable is missing report it to the police first and second to the hotel manager and then contact Marriott or post it. If certain hotels have a repeat problem with theft, Marriott needs to know and do something about it.
Of course sometimes we can't take all our valuables with us, as is certainly true of my travel. In Europe, where I usually travel, I almost never put my computer in the safe, but I do put other stuff there. So if there's a safe use it. I probably should put my computer in the safe too on a regular basis but since it's a registered college computer, I don't always do so.
Sad to say, I think the problem of hotel room theft is probably more prevalent here in the US than elsewhere.
I agree, thefts need to be reported to the police and then to local management, although I expect they don't do much except tell you that you "should have put it in the safe".
Customer service seems to almost always refer everything to the manager, even if it is the manager you're complaining about, so they are almost useless except for small issues.
By reporting to the police and posting in a forum like tripadvisor, it makes people aware. Sorry to hear that you lost things.
You also need the police report to claim on your insurance.
Above: Targus Cut Resitant DEFCON Armor Lock
Good suggestions. One compact, light, reliable and inexpensive solution for road warriors with laptops is the cut resistant armor lock made by several manufacturers. They come with a combination or keyed lock and available for retail at Staples and Walmart among others.
In the absence of a room safe, perhaps hotels might offer this device as a loaner or better yet, equip the room with one that is attached to the desk.
Thanks for the heads up TJC. I just purchased one. I've been fortunate so far and have never had anything taken from me but as mentioned in another post many of these hotels do not offer a safe and if they do, it is too small to place a lap top in it.
While I have everyone's ear the best of the holiday season to you all!!
You're welcome! I loaned mine to a family member and had to purchase another. Wearing the victim T-shirt is not fun. But, leaving a portable device that's upwards of $1000 untethered and in plain view is an open invitation. While Marriott is vigilant to reduce loss prevention, there can be lapses. The takeaway is to secure valuables or take them with you.
I have not lost anything out of the room, but have had issues in the parking lot with a smashed window and lost possesions. IME the police do very little other than issue a report which may come in handy for insurance. I learned the hard way that $1,000+ of stolen belongings equates to $100 of reimbursement by insurance. Keep your valuables with you or locked away.
Economic challenges have a huge impact. Reduced headcount in local police plus hotel staff makes hotels an easy target. Throughout 2009 into early 2010, conspicuous signs warning guests at check-in about the dangers of theft of electronic devices from cars including, but not limited to GPS devices - were unavoidable at the Front Desk at many Marriott's.
Diligence and precaution while traveling can prevent and minimize losses due to theft from your room or car. With the exception of hotel parking facilities in large, dense urban locations, parking tends to be complimentary, poorly lit, unpatrolled and open to intrusion.
Marriott's core value, Spirit to Serve is not limited to the guests, but extends to the community. To the credit of the Marriott's visited recently, I've noticed improved lighting, but also increased visibility of police patrols. Theft or crime of any kind is a liability to the livelihood of any community. It's to Marriott's benefit to work with local law enforcement to maintain a welcoming and safe guest environment.
Let's recognize the importance of protecting our valuables. While travelling, be vigilant.
Thanks for the post and advice. My computer was also a university computer that can not be used by anyone since it is password protected. Of course that would not be apparent to the thief until they tried to use it. I too use room safes when they are available, but there were none in this hotel. I did report it to the police and the hotel manager.
You are correct. The hotel was owned by a Management company. When making reservations online through the Marriott reservation page - there is no information to let you know that it is not a Marriott managed property. I only found this out when I checked into the hotel. I will definitely look into this before I make reservations in the future.
This may be a wake up call, but only a handful of properties are owned by Marriott International. The lion's share are franchise owned. Upon check-in, the owner/management company will be clearly posted near the Front Desk typically on a wall plaque. A few examples:
How the franchise model impacts loss prevention is unclear. Does Marriott have brand standards for loss prevention? Does Marriott conduct loss prevention training? From a guest perspective, should it matter? Based upon crisismanager's experience, perhaps?
One of my business associates had a few things missing from her room. The Manager did buy replacements of all the missing items. Some of the articles were later discovered in a maid’s locker and she was terminated that day. Since I travel to this location many times during the year; we are known to most of the staff and the treatment we received, I can't guarantee, you will have there.