Every vacation, sadly, comes to an end — but that doesn’t mean you can’t take a little something home with you to help you remember it.
For most of us that means picking up a tiny trinket in a gift shop, a small piece of jewelry, or a work of art to hang on our walls. But for the more rebellious, that little keepsake can be downright criminal.
From the tiny bottles of shampoo and conditioner to the comfy slippers and robes, hotels are filled to the brim with souvenirs just waiting for you to steal them.
“People will steal just about anything they can,” David Elton, partner of Home Grown Hotels in the U.K., told the Telegraph. “Bathrobes, coat hangers, bed linen, mattress covers, towels, pillows, toilet-seat covers – pretty much everything in a room.”
As we’ve highlighted in the past, hoteliers frequently don’t mind if you take little things like toiletries — in fact, they’re counting on it. Using it later could remind you of your stay and convince you to come back.
But what about the good stuff like towels and robes?
“It is a crime,” a spokesperson for the Metropolitan Police told the Telegraph. “If we were to receive allegations, we would follow them up.”
While you’re not likely to actually get arrested for stealing a towel, you could end up banned from your favorite hotels.
According to NBC, most major hotels now have a computer data base with a “no stay list” filled with previous patrons who have stolen one too many coffee mugs and are no longer welcome to book a stay. Moreover, NBC reported that hotel chains are happy to share their customer intel with others.
Sure, it may seem silly for hotels to start banning people for just a smattering of kleptomania, but tiny thefts can add up and do big damage to their bottom line.
Even if they don’t call the cops on you, they may simply charge you for the stolen item anyway, so really, you’re not getting away with anything.
There’s also another option if you love that robe: Call up the front desk and ask if you can have it, or if it’s for sale. Many hotels (especially those that invested in good robes) have those kinds of items available for purchase.