The Simple TikTok Hack That Will Help You Feel Safer In Your Hotel Room

Hotels are fairly safe places to stay in — until they aren't. As it turns out, robbery is a common occurrence in these establishments, with a report by Global Secure Accreditation noting that even five-star hotels are not immune to this problem. Its commercial director, Lee Whiteing, told Boutique Hotelier that in the study, "GSA analyzed information from open-source hotel booking sites and found that guests at more than half of five-star hotels had reported at least one incident of theft."

You don't often hear hotel robberies in the news unless a celebrity's room gets ambushed or when more heinous crimes occur. But they are apparently rampant, although many hotels and even guests choose not to report the incidents to the police. "Hotels are notorious for wanting to protect their brand or image," Philip Farina, CEO of security company Enterprising Securities, shared with ABC News. What's more, most of the theft is not even done by staff, but by opportunists who pose as guests. Some push doors at random and hope they're open, while some dupe housekeepers for access. Some even go as far as breaking into rooms. "They hope you're sleeping and drunk, so they can go in and lift something from you," criminologist Bob Arno told Conde Nast Traveler.

So what's one to do to avoid their room getting broken into? A flight attendant on TikTok shared a hack to help ensure your peace of mind at night, and it involves using hotel-issued hangers.

Use coat hangers to better secure your door

It may be hard to believe, but hotel doors are easy to break into. Some TikTokers pointed out that burglars can use different keycards, while some use a special type of wire or hook. To prevent thieves from accessing your room this way, user @cici.inthesky, who is a flight attendant by profession, shared on the app that you can use coat hangers to secure your door.

In her viral video, she wrote that "hotel handles are designed to unlock the privacy lock when pulled down in case of fire," making them easily accessible. The solution? The hangers inside your hotel room closet! Cici demonstrated that two of them are enough to secure your door. It's as easy as simply placing one on the latch situated near the top of the door, and the other on the door handle. Make sure that both hangers are hooked onto one another, too. According to Cici, this method "prevents people from using a wire to pull down the handle, or a tool to open up this other door security device [latch]."

Some users expressed concern about using this method, pointing out that it may be difficult to get out of the room during emergency situations. But another user noted that it's not an issue: "It looks like the hangers can slide right off [if] needed," they wrote. "Also, my husband is a Fire Captain – he says they can 100% get through that door if needed!"

You can also put a towel over the door latch

In case you don't have access to hangers, you can also try utilizing a hand towel or a washcloth. In another viral TikTok video by user @cici.inthesky, she shared a trick that prevents robbers from disengaging the door latch. You simply have to place the towel over the engaged latch (note: not the door knob or handle), and that's enough to prevent anyone from using cardboard to gain access to your room. She also noted that this hack could work against the break-in technique where burglars use wires or hooks.

For additional security beyond the aforementioned DIY hacks, you can also make use of portable door locks or door jammers to keep strangers from entering unprompted. These contraptions are designed to allow for easy installation, so you can add extra security and enjoy some peace in your hotel room without worrying too much about your safety.