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Protection against burglars in the hotel: Three TikTok tricks and what they really do, according to an expert


Highlights: There are various tips circulating online that vacationers can use to supposedly make their hotel rooms burglar-proof. Travel security expert Sven Leidel classifies them for Ippen.Media. Three TikTok tricks and what they really do, according to an expert. In addition to the coat hanger on the door handle, a coffee cup is pushed onto the doorknob. It is intended to ensure that no burglar can sneak unnoticed into the room. The holidaymaker, in the best scenario, is frightened when the burglar is frightened, says Leidel.

As of: March 2, 2024, 3:21 p.m

By: Franziska Kaindl, Laura Wittstruck




If burglars get into the hotel room, your recovery will quickly be over.

But what are the benefits of various tricks on the Internet that are intended to protect against thieves?

The long-awaited vacation is finally here - and what you bring with you are not only swimming trunks and sunscreen, but in most cases also a lot of valuables.

From laptops to expensive SLRs to credit cards and cash, there are often several hundred euros in the suitcases.

Taking everything with you to the beach or ski slopes is not an option.

But even in the hotel room, the items are not necessarily safe.

Even hotel safes occasionally have crucial security gaps.

So what to do?

As is often the case, there are various tips circulating online that vacationers can use to supposedly make their hotel rooms burglar-proof.

Frequent travelers like to show off their tricks, especially on the short video platform TikTok.

But what use are they really?

Sven Leidel, travel safety expert and author of the “Travel Safety Handbook” classifies them for



TikTok trick 1: the coat hanger on the door handle

A flight attendant who posts videos on the platform under the TikTok username


shares a variety of tips for more safety in the hotel room.

One of them is the “coat hanger trick”.

Using two hangers, she fixes the normal door lock and an additional lock on her door.

In this way, burglars should no longer be able to operate the locking mechanism from the inside using a long rod that is pushed through the door slot.

Does this trick actually work?

Travel security expert Sven Leidel is a bit skeptical.

Because the way the flight attendant does it in her clip might work - but not every accommodation offers the same conditions: “The clothes hangers used in the video can no longer be found in this way in hotels and also in them “The door hinges shown in the video, you have to ask yourself whether these are available in every hotel,” says Leidel to



His conclusion is: “Better than doing nothing at all!” However, the method cannot be relied on 100 percent.

TikTok trick 2: the portable door lock

Now to the next TikTok recommendation, which also comes from a flight attendant.

Under the username


she swears by a portable door lock that she bought herself and takes with her when she travels.

It can be inserted into the door frame lock and secured, making it even more difficult for burglars to break into the room.

Leidel thinks this tip makes more sense: “This works quite well in practice, just like a wooden or rubber wedge (possibly also with an alarm siren) that you push under the door.” However, vacationers should note that this additional device This makes it difficult for rescue workers to get into the room if necessary.

“In this respect, you can or must carefully consider the use of such protection and weigh up all the advantages and disadvantages.”

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TikTok trick 3: the cup on the doorknob

And now for the last tip from the TikTok collection: the cup trick.

A normal coffee cup is pushed onto the door handle of the hotel room door.

It is intended to ensure that no burglar can sneak in unnoticed.

Finally, it makes a loud noise when the cup falls down when you press the latch.

The holidaymaker is alarmed and, in the best case scenario, the burglar is frightened.

The user layoutroom,

among others,

uses this trick.

Sounds pretty simple, but is it of any use?

Travel security expert Sven Leidel definitely sees a few weak points in this approach: “With conventional door handles, this is certainly an effective measure.

If the door handle is a round knob, then it probably won't work." In addition, the cup trick only offers protection when the holidaymaker is in the hotel room.

“This measure is unlikely to be used when you leave the hotel room.

Especially since the question has to be asked anyway as to whether it really does any good if the hotel room is empty and someone causes the cup to fall to the floor by pressing the door handle.

Do the other guests in the next rooms care?

Rather not!"

There are many tips circulating on the Internet about how to protect yourself from burglars in the hotel.

Not all of them are necessarily useful.

© Franziska Kaindl/DALL-E (AI generated)

Pay attention to important security criteria when selecting a hotel

But what's really the point if you want to protect your valuables in the hotel?

According to travel security expert Leidel, it starts with the selection of the hotel.

Of course, it's difficult to say exactly in advance.

Nevertheless, it makes sense to find out as much information as possible about the accommodation.

According to the expert, if you want to be on the safe side, you should prefer hotels from well-known chains, as they take appropriate safety standards into account.

The next step is to choose the right room.

According to the travel security expert, it is better to book one on a higher floor, preferably between the second and sixth floors: “On the one hand, rooms on the ground floor and first floor are relatively easy to access from the outside.

On the other hand, for rooms on the seventh floor or higher, there is a risk that in the event of a fire or a hotel evacuation, the ladders of the fire department and other rescue workers will not be able to reach your hotel room.”

How to secure your hotel room during your stay

When you arrive at your holiday destination, you immediately want to explore the area or relax on the beach.

But there is still a little work to be done if travelers want to protect themselves.

The precautions start right at check-in, as Leidel explains: “Never communicate your room number in public and do not pass it on to third parties.” Otherwise, travelers could ask for a new room.

When entering the room, the first thing to do is to check everything thoroughly: you should take a look into cupboards and other possible hiding places in order to rule out security risks right from the start, according to the expert's advice.

Another sensible measure: closing the window curtains so that no one can see into the room from outside.

Travelers should also check whether the room has a spyhole, a safe and a separate door lock.

If you notice any defects in the locking devices of windows and doors, report them immediately to the hotel staff.

However, vacationers are likely to feel the most uneasy as soon as they leave the room and no longer have an eye on their belongings.

To this end, Leidel gives holidaymakers the following tip: “Leave the lights and TV in the room on when you leave your hotel room.

This gives the impression that someone is in the room.

If the lights and TV need to be activated via a room card module, simply use a second room card or a replacement item such as a business card, cardboard or folded paper while you are away.” A similar effect is had when travelers permanently use the “Do not disturb “-sign to hang on the hotel room door – if you do not want to use room service.

Source: merkur

All news articles on 2024-03-02

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