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Checking into Danger? 10 Hotel Safety Tips For Vancouver Travelers

Updated: Aug 11, 2023

a hotel room

Under the dim glow of Vancouver's city lights, Alice, a solo traveler, is laying down in her hotel room. Just as she starts to journey into dreamland, an abrupt knock jolts her.

A forceful voice claims to be from the hotel staff, insisting she needs to reposition her car that's supposedly "blocking" another guest.

But wait—Alice never mentioned her car to the hotel.

Such late-night surprises can sometimes be tactics to draw potential victims out of the safety of their rooms.

While Vancouver is mostly known as a safe city, when you’re nestled in an unfamiliar hotel room miles from the comforts of home, it pays to be vigilant. Here's your go-to checklist for a secure hotel stay:

10 Hotel Safety Tips For Vancouver Travelers

1. Peephole Precaution

Upon entering your room, examine the door peephole keeping an eye out for unusual marks, inconsistencies, or signs of tampering. Both sides of the peephole should show you a clear, unobstructed view of the hallway.

Look for any red flags like scratches, cracks, loose parts, or signs of adhesive around the edges.

Also if the design of the exterior and interior parts of the peephole look mismatched it might have been tampered with.

2. Guard Your Personal Intel

If someone chats you up in the hotel bar or lobby, whether it's a hot guy or girl, keep your personal info to yourself. If they’re asking you seemingly innocent questions about who you’re traveling with or where you’re headed, they may be gathering intel on whether you’re traveling alone.

Limit location sharing and be cautious about sharing your location on social media if it’s set to public.

And while it's wise to be discreet online, always keep loved ones informed about your whereabouts.

3. Check Window And Door Locks

Make sure all locks on doors and windows function correctly. This includes deadbolts and security chains. Don't compromise on this: if something seems off, request maintenance or a different room.

4. Silent Landline

If your hotel room phone rings from an internal hotel number (like the front desk) and the caller makes unusual requests (like an order to come down to the lobby for a visitor, or an alert for a fire alarm), hang up and dial the front desk directly to confirm the call's legitimacy.

5. Hotel Homework

Scrutinize hotel reviews, Google reviews and stalk their social media, particularly concentrating on comments regarding safety, location and security incidents. Check their location and opt for hotels preferably close to popular tourist hotspots or main neighborhoods.

6. Know Your Exits

Be aware of your surroundings and get to know the hotel layout by knowing the location of emergency exits, stairwells and common areas.

7. Hotel Staff Identification

If someone is claiming to be hotel staff at your door, ask them to show you proper identification, especially if you didn't request any service. Keep your door chain on while looking at their ID.

8. Key Card Safety

Imagine sipping your morning coffee in the hotel's café, distracted by the city's buzz. As you leave, you leave behind your room key card. In the wrong hands, this is not just access to a room, but to your personal belongings and sanctuary. If it ever goes missing, report and secure a replacement instantly.

And while it might be tempting to scribble your room number on the card holder for convenience, think twice. It's akin to giving potential intruders both the key and your address.

9. No Ground Floor

Wherever possible, request a hotel room above the ground floor. Ground-level rooms can be more accessible to potential intruder break-ins.

10. Be Careful Joining Wi-Fi Or Using The Hotel App

While hopping onto that free hotel Wi-Fi might seem like a no-brainer, public networks, even fancy hotel ones, can be easy targets for those looking to compromise your data. Without a VPN, all your data - from your search history to login credentials - can be exposed.

When you connect to hotel Wi-Fi, you're joining a network with potentially hundreds of other users. Technically speaking, these open networks can lack end-to-end encryption, making it easier for cyber attackers to employ 'Man-in-the-Middle' attacks. In this scenario, the attacker secretly intercepts and potentially alters the communication between two parties.

Additionally, using the hotel's app might seem convenient, but apps can sometimes have vulnerabilities that hackers exploit.

Did you find these tips useful? Don't keep them to yourself! Click the 'Share' button now and empower your friends and family with these essential safety tips.


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