When you leave you hotel room for the last time it can be a disheartening experience.

It means your holiday is at an end and, like most of us, you will be conscious of just how soon you need to be checking into the departure lounge.

Even if your mind is already on the unpleasant things that await your return, there are a couple of issues that you should take stock of before you hand in your keys. They could save a lot of drama down the line.

Here are the seven things you should check first before checking out of any hotel room:

1. The mini bar shot

No we don't mean line one up for the road; take a picture of the fridge contents.


Take a picture on your arrival and departure. The same goes for any damage you might find around the room. (Better alert the reception should you find anything's amiss.)

Should an unexpected charge appear on your credit card from the hotel you'll be prepared to with evidence showing it wasn't you who downed all the Dom Perignon.

2. Take your left shoe out of the safe

Even if you're not particularly scatterbrained, take a pro-tip from someone who is:
Stash one of your shoes with your valuables in the room safe.

When it's time to go, the missing shoe from your favourite pair will be a prompt to check the safe.

Trust me – it doesn't matter how much of a rush you're in – you're not going to try to leave without it.

3. Pull back the shower curtain

Not to cast any aspersions - the shower is a place most visitors don't spend much time in.
Once in the morning, maybe, to freshen-up before your adventures. It makes sense then why this is the one place most people overlook when packing up.

It can be a pain, and an expense to replace all your travel toiletries on the way back.
You might want to add the shower, the wardrobe and of course **UNDER THE BED** to your list of last places to check.

4. Freebies

While the mini bar is off limits, the miniatures in the bathroom are fair game. Take your fill of soap and shower toiletries.


Consumables like magazines and stationary are normally up for grabs. It's best to check before going for the big-ticket items such as bathrobes and slippers.

L'addition: It will be easier to check the bill in your room, rather than a busy hotel foyer. Photo / 123RF
L'addition: It will be easier to check the bill in your room, rather than a busy hotel foyer. Photo / 123RF

5. Ask for the William

Nobody is so flash as to leave a hotel without checking the bill, I hear you say.

It might seem like a given, but this tip bears repeating:
If possible, ask to check the bill in your room. Many hotels do this out of courtesy – or you might be issued with a slip under your door.

You're far more likely to notice anything out of the ordinary in the comfort of your own room, rather than in the crowded foyer, while the clerk drums his fingers and your taxi idles on the forecourt.

6. Ask to stay longer

We know you want to. Most hotels can make a decision about late check-out times on the day of departure. The receptionist will know if they're waiting to move anyone into your room or they can hold off the housekeeping for a few more hours.

This can be dead helpful if you're looking to stash your bags and you've got a long wait before moving on.

7. Take a picture

This has nothing to do with insuring yourself against mini bar thieves or the destructive whims of the next guests - This one's just for you. After all, it lasts longer than a holiday.