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Hotel guest etiquette

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By Evelyn Masaba
During your travels, you will always end up using a hotel or any other lodging arrangements, which means that even if you have paid for your stay, you have to learn some of the proper and necessary etiquette.
Hotels always try their best to give us good service, and here are some vital and simple prescripts to help you do your part.

Be polite to staff
Just because you are paying to stay at the hotel does not mean that you have to be rude and bossy to the staff there; they are people too and are trying their best to do their job. Don’t shout at them in situations when you are displeased with their service, be calm and always be polite.

Tip staff
It is important to carry loose notes that you can use to tip the valet, housekeeper, waitress, doorman and concierge for a job well done. It’s not a written rule that you have to do it, but it is a good thing to do.

Call ahead
Before arrival, call ahead to confirm the booking and be patient upon reaching the front desk if they are working on other guests who were checking in before you came. Smile at them while asking them questions even if you are tired from your journey from the airport.

Keep an eye on your children
Children are such adorable little angels, but they can be handful especially when they go to a new place and find it very interesting to explore. You do not want to be the parent with the unruly kids shouting and screaming through the hotel hallway for the other guests. It can be uncomfortable for them so you have to find some activities that can keep the children busy but not too noisy.

Be clean
Being clean is good for you. Keep the trash off the room floor, flush the toilets after using them, and do not leave hair in the sink for the housekeeping staff to collect. Put the dirty linen and clothes in one part of the room for them to find and keep things off the bed so that the housekeeper can easily make your bed.

Room service
When done with room service, put your room service tray out of the room so that the staff can pick it up easily.

Guest numbers
Why hide the number of people that will be staying in the room you are paying for? Opt for a hotel you can afford so that you do not “miscalculate” the number of people that will be stated when making your payment; it is very unfair to the hotel.

Don’t hoard food
Some hotels provide food in plenty, especially the buffet, and this can bring out some very unsavory characters in many guests. Resist the urge to hoard all the chicken or pastries just because they are in plenty. Leave some for the rest of the guests.

Toiletries
While it is okay to carry certain things from the hotel such as soap and shampoo, do not take the towels, linen or bathrobes. The latter are reusable so that means the hotel can wash them and provide them to other guests who will use the hotel soon after you leave.

Ecofriendly
When not in the room, make sure to switch off the lights and air conditioning. Do not leave the TV on either to save energy. If you do not want the housekeepers to wash your towels and robes, you can reuse them too.
Well, now go on and be a good hotel guest!

The writer is the public relations manager at Jumia Travel in Uganda. Travel.jumia.com is Africa’s No.1 hotel booking website, allowing you to get the best prices for more than 25,000 hotels in Africa and more than 200,000 hotels around the world. Jumia Travel has offices in Lagos, Accra, Dakar, Abidjan, Algiers, Douala, Kampala, Dar Es Salaam, Nairobi, Addis Ababa, Porto and Paris.

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