The Most Frequently Stolen Items From Hotel Rooms Might Surprise You

For whatever reason, staying in hotels seems to bring out the kleptomaniac in even the most honest people. It starts with taking home the miniature toiletries (which are of course, fair game) and before you know it, you’re trying to figure out how to stuff the fluffy white bathrobe into your suitcase without anyone noticing it’s gone.

Now we’re all familiar with the rampant theft of towels and linen from hotel rooms – in fact, the problem is so widespread that some hotels have resorted to inserting tracking devices in their linens to stop the thievery. However, it seems some hotel guests will steal just about anything that’s not nailed down (and some things that are). A poll of Britons uncovered a surprising array of goods pilfered regularly from hotel rooms.Among the more bizarre items stolen were curtains, with 27 percent of respondents admitting to taking home the drapes. Artwork was also high on the list, with one in three people claiming to have pinched the paintings right off the wall. Thirty-six percent also said they’d made off with picture frames from their hotel room – one can only presume these are the same folks that took the artwork. Other items of note included kettles, which were swiped by 19 percent of respondents (this was a survey of tea-loving Brits so perhaps it shouldn’t surprise). Hotels have also been busy replacing batteries and light bulbs, with more than half of respondents confessing to emptying out remote controls and lamps.

But perhaps the biggest sin to have been committed by British hotel guests? Stealing the bible. In an ironic twist, seven percent of people owned up to pocketing the very book that condemns theft.

[Photo credit: Flickr user UggBoy UggGirl]

Finally – a hotel where you’re *encouraged* to steal the towels

I’m one of those uptight folks who hates the idea of stealing anything: I’ve scolded friends for buying bootlegged CDs and DVDs. My husband, however, isn’t quite as ridiculous as I am — in fact, I cringe every time he comes home from a business trip, in anticipation of what hotel towel he’s decided to bring home with him as a souvenir.

However, I think I may have found a hotel where we can go and I don’t have to live in fear: The Hotel Fusion in San Francisco actually encourages you to steal their towels! Stay with them for three nights or more, and they’ll let you take home a towel, complete with the words “I didn’t steal my towel from Hotel Fusion,” to assuage any fears of any over-concerned spouses. The offer is good for stays between now and February 28, 2009.

Now if I could just find another hotel that has a similar offer for a flat-screen TV…