The secret language of hotel staff

By Kate Schneider of

Hotel staff have their own special ways of communicating with each other. Photo / iStock
Hotel staff have their own special ways of communicating with each other. Photo / iStock

If you've ever wondered if hotel staff are gossiping about you behind your back, well you could be right.

But even if you did overhear what they were saying, you probably wouldn't understand what they really mean. That's because some hotel employees have devised a secret language so they never get caught out talking about guests.

Here are some highlights of the behind-the-scenes lingo, according to Conde Nast Traveler.

• Skipper: A person who makes a reservation but never actually turns up to the hotel.

• UG: An unsatisfied guest.

• DG: A demanding guest.

• Pig in the pen: A guest who is struck in the parking ramp.

• Peach: A guest who proves to be extremely difficult to deal with.

• Ghost: Someone who arrives and insists they have a reservation, but they never made one (this one's from RocketNews24.)

And here's some other more general hotel-related lingo:

• Hoo ha: To go as fast as possible.

• Lobby lizard: When a staff member goes into the lobby during busy times to greet and assist guests.

• 20/10 rule: In one posh hotel, this means to acknowledge a guest when they are 20 steps away, using a nod or a look. When they are 10 steps away, eye contact or personal interaction is used.

• A classic: A very traditional guest.

• VIP: Very important pup.

• VIB: Very important baby.

• Cubs: New employees.

• 'Walking a guest': When a hotel overbooks, counting on a 10 per cent no-show rate, sometimes they have to turn guests away and put them up in a different hotel (This one's from


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