Top 4 Security Issues Facing Hotels

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Security can be a tricky issue to deal with in the hospitality sector. With so many people coming and going, there's a lot of security concerns to keep track of. And hotel grounds tend to be more extensive, making it harder for staff to cover every area while working to ensure guest happiness. 

Still, general managers and hotel staff have a responsibility to have a plan to protect their guests and their personal property, along with their own property and employees. But you don’t have to do it alone. To assist you, our professional security experts have put together this list of the top four security issues facing hotel and lodging facilities along with some suggestions for addressing them.

1. Trespassing and Loitering

With so many guests at once, a high rate of turnover, constant visitors, and numerous employees, there's an awful lot of people to keep track of at a hotel. It's often extraordinarily difficult to know who belongs in a particular place at any given time. If there's a bar, restaurant, or convention center for events, the problem is even more pronounced. 

Since employees and security officers can't tell the difference between a guest and someone who's planning to steal just by looking at them, access control measures need to be put in place. After certain hours, requiring key cards to get into all doors is a must. Consider also requiring a swipe to get into all amenities 24/7 to ensure only guests can access pools, fitness centers, business centers, and other areas that have expensive equipment that can be damaged.

2. Theft of Property

Lodging facilities and other public accommodations tend to have a problem with theft. Despite popular belief, most instances of theft occur in common areas rather than in rooms. In fact, while some people do break into hotel rooms to steal, many of the thefts that occur in rooms are that of hotel property that guests take when they leave. 

Some of the more brazen guests might copy their key card or claim they lost it so that they can enter the room after they check out to take things without being charged. Perhaps even more surprising, five-star hotels are more likely to have high-end items lifted by guests than 4-star ones. Keep an up-to-date inventory of items in each room and have your cleaning crew check

Also, be sure to educate guests when they check in about best practices for keeping track of their personal items when using the pool, fitness center, or common areas of the hotel. Some guests may come from different areas or countries where such practices aren’t well known.

3. Parking Lot Theft

Hotel parking lots are usually full of cars that are often left unattended for long periods of time. This can lead to carjackers and petty thieves targeting these areas. Higher-end hotels tend to have more expensive luxury cars in the parking lot that could signal to passersby that big-ticket items can be found inside them. It's not uncommon for high-priced stereo systems, other electronics, jewelry, cash, or even the car itself, to go missing from the lot. Statistics show that items being stolen from inside cars are more common than actual auto theft, making up 85 percent of all auto-related theft, and cars are four times more likely to be stolen from parking lots than other places.

To help increase the safety and security of your hotel parking lot, look closely for shadowy corners, dingy pathways, and other scary-looking areas. Consultant lighting and/or security experts who can recommend solutions that fill those areas with light. You should also consider security cameras that can both serve as an active deterrence to crime as well as a way to catch thieves in the act.

4. Disorderly Conduct

Hotels and lodging facilities want their guests to let loose and have a good time. After all, isn't that often the purpose of taking a vacation? However, sometimes people take it a little too far. Guests can act out of character while away from home by drinking too much, getting loud, or being confrontational at which point having fun becomes disorderly conduct. 

When guests become belligerent or get into altercations, they become a risk to guest safety. Even just playing loud music or having rowdy parties can be a disturbance to other guests. This can be a real issue for hotel employees trying to ensure that every guest enjoys their stay. Having an on-site or mobile patrol security officer who actively monitors guest behavior and specific trouble areas, such as party/event spaces and pool areas, can help keep the shenanigans to a minimum, This frees up your front desk staff to focus on providing good service.

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How Signal Security Can Help

As a hotel manager, you should know the impact of first impressions. A poor perception of your property’s security can impact the entire experience. Guests then go home to leave bad reviews that hurt your business and help your competition.

Luckily, there’s a solution. You can give your guests confidence by partnering with Signal.

Patrols to Meet Your Needs

Signal’s signature vehicle can be parked outside in the front driveway or near the main entrance. Guests will be assured by the sight of our distinctive patrol SUV from check-in to check-out.

A highly-trained Signal officer can stop by your hotel several times per night. For example, you may wish to add security around the time of an overnight shift change. Your employees will be grateful for the added peace of mind as they head to their cars.

If your hotel encounters problems at a certain time each day, Signal can help by providing a stable security presence. For instance, if bars in your city close at 2am, Signal can patrol from 2 to 4. Our officers' professional presence will ensure peace and safety for all your guests and staff.

The schedule is always modifiable to meet your unique needs. Officers could move through each hallway, alert for signs of smoking, drug use, disturbances, or new maintenance issues. They could even patrol the pool, elevator, stairwells, and other “blind spots” on your property.

Worldwide Expertise, Neighborhood Care

Signal achieves this level of personal care and flexibility through our local franchising model. Each Signal Franchise is individually owned and operated, so clients work with local experts who are proud to serve their communities.

When you entrust your guests’ safety to Signal, you’re trusting the global leader in peace of mind. We’ve transformed the security industry through world-class service from local experts who know and love the communities we protect.

Make the Numbers Work For You

Countless studies have shown that travelers rate safety and security as the most important factor in their lodging decision.

A 2003 study surveyed over 3,000 visitors to Anaheim, California. Respondents rated their level of concern about hotel security at 9.1 out of 10. A whopping 61% of all respondents responded with a solid 10.

The same research found that travelers are comforted by a highly-visible security presence. For this question, the average rating was 8.6. 50% of respondents ranked it a 10.

The takeaway: Hotels that invest in visible and proactive security will succeed in the modern hospitality market.


You can ensure a delightful stay for every guest by partnering with Signal. We’re here to help, so don’t wait any longer. Discover more about our security services and find your nearest Signal location. Get started by requesting a free, on-site security assessment from Signal.


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