Stolen Money

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Mar 15, 2018
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#1
I booked a hotel room at Trafalgar -St. James Hotel, an affiliate of Hilton, in London, UK for March 2-6, 2018. I checked in.


On the first day away from the hotel, someone went through my suitcase, in the room, and stole 320 British pounds and 150 euros. I immediately reported it to the hotel manager who did an investigation. Since there was no break in, I suspect it was the cleaning staff. The manager stated that someone was suspected and not allowed to come on the premises.


I have not received any remuneration for the stolen money from the hotel, even though it appears the money was stolen from an employee. Doors were locked and the suitcase was zipped close.


No police report was made since I did not think they could catch the criminal and I did not want to waste my time waiting for the police to arrive.


Is there some way I can get reimbursed for the money stolen?
 

Neil Maley

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Dec 27, 2014
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#2
Probably not since you didn’t file a police report. The hotels have an electronic record of every entry in and out of the room. They would have had to identify who cleaned your room had you called the police for an investigation. Now it’s your word against the hotel.

You surely know you should never leave money in a room or suitcase. Wasn’t there a safe in the room? Was the suitcase locked?
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#3
Tom I believe the UK has particular innkeeper laws on liability and limits. The problem is that a police reports is often needed in order for the hotel to contact their insurance policy for reimbursement.

The police actually do take reports and are not terribly slow in responding. And if they had been able to find out anything it would have been more helpful — such as if they found out person X entered your room and person X previously worked at a place where similar crimes occurred then the hotel may be more inclined to pay.

Theft from hotel rooms in London is not unheard of sadly.

You should write but I think it will be a challenge without a police report and be prepared for them to offer non cash good will gesture.
 
Mar 15, 2018
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#4
Probably not since you didn’t file a police report. The hotels have an electronic record of every entry in and out of the room. They would have had to identify who cleaned your room had you called the police for an investigation. Now it’s your word against the hotel.

You surely know you should never leave money in a room or suitcase. Wasn’t there a safe in the room? Was the suitcase locked?
Thanks for the quick reply.

I wasn't aware of the importance of the police. I trusted that an internal investigation would be enough.

There was a safe in the room, but I didn't use it. I trusted that a reputable hotel would keep my things safe, or at least not allow their employees to ravage around my things. Although the suitcase was not locked, it was completely zippered shut and closed.
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
12,779
12,758
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New York
www.promalvacations.com
#5
Thanks for the quick reply.

I wasn't aware of the importance of the police. I trusted that an internal investigation would be enough.

There was a safe in the room, but I didn't use it. I trusted that a reputable hotel would keep my things safe, or at least not allow their employees to ravage around my things. Although the suitcase was not locked, it was completely zippered shut and closed.
That’s why they have safes. You should never leave anything valuable in your room without putting it in the safe. It would have been much harder for someone to break into a safe than just open your suitcase.

We always use travel locks for our luggage and if a rental on doesn’t have a safe, anything valuable is locked in the suitcase. It’s not infallible because you can take a pencil and separate the zipper but it still makes it harder.

The police would have been able to question the housekeeper while you were there. It’s possible if it were an employee that they have done this before or could do it again because nothing happened.

I don’t see any harm in contacting the management of the hotel and telling them you are concerned that this can happen to another guest and ask them to please perform an investigation.

You may not get anything back but the hotel should be taking a look at their employees.
 
Jan 6, 2015
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#6
Neils advice is sound. I will add that I position the zipper in a precise location so I can tell if someone has moved it ...
 
Likes: Nancy

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
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#7
What an awful experience. The thieves probably know that cash is impossible to trace, and the hotel won't reimburse you for stolen cash. It sounds like Hilton has a very good idea of the identity of the culprit, but with no action on your part, they're not going to come forward. I'm very, very sorry that you lost all that money. Two major assumptions are bogus for travellers: you will make your connection and arrive at your destination when the airline said you would, and hotel rooms are a safe place for your belongings. Hotel safes are a bit of a joke, but a money belt is always a good investment. My cash and credit cards are always in my computer bag, which is always with me. I don't know any other way to be sure it's all safe.
 
Likes: VoR61
Mar 15, 2018
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#8
That’s why they have safes. You should never leave anything valuable in your room without putting it in the safe. It would have been much harder for someone to break into a safe than just open your suitcase.

We always use travel locks for our luggage and if a rental on doesn’t have a safe, anything valuable is locked in the suitcase. It’s not infallible because you can take a pencil and separate the zipper but it still makes it harder.

The police would have been able to question the housekeeper while you were there. It’s possible if it were an employee that they have done this before or could do it again because nothing happened.

I don’t see any harm in contacting the management of the hotel and telling them you are concerned that this can happen to another guest and ask them to please perform an investigation.

You may not get anything back but the hotel should be taking a look at their employees.

I HAVE spoken to the management of the hotel and they carried out their own investigation. I had told them I was mainly concerned about this happening to other guests. Soon after examining who came into the room through lock records, someone was considered the main culprit and was not allow to come onto the premises. When I left a few days later, they claim they were wrapping up the investigation, but refused to divulge any information. I was also informed that the "higher ups" were alerted to this incident.

I know it was foolish to not use the safe. But at this point, I must learn from my mistakes and move forward.
 
Mar 15, 2018
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#9
What an awful experience. The thieves probably know that cash is impossible to trace, and the hotel won't reimburse you for stolen cash. It sounds like Hilton has a very good idea of the identity of the culprit, but with no action on your part, they're not going to come forward. I'm very, very sorry that you lost all that money. Two major assumptions are bogus for travellers: you will make your connection and arrive at your destination when the airline said you would, and hotel rooms are a safe place for your belongings. Hotel safes are a bit of a joke, but a money belt is always a good investment. My cash and credit cards are always in my computer bag, which is always with me. I don't know any other way to be sure it's all safe.

Thank you for understanding. I had a undergarment pouch and usually carry all my valuables in it. For some reason I trusted the hotel since it was quite expensive to stay, and was connected to the Hilton. I am sorry I trusted and will never trust a Hilton hotel again!
 
Mar 15, 2018
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#10
I HAVE spoken to the management of the hotel and they carried out their own investigation. I had told them I was mainly concerned about this happening to other guests. Soon after examining who came into the room through lock records, someone was considered the main culprit and was not allow to come onto the premises. When I left a few days later, they claim they were wrapping up the investigation, but refused to divulge any information. I was also informed that the "higher ups" were alerted to this incident.

I know it was foolish to not use the safe. But at this point, I must learn from my mistakes and move forward.
This is how I learned that the money was stolen. I always position my zipper in the same place. When I came back into the room, and discovered the zipper in the wrong position, I knew for sure someone was roaming in my belongings.
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
12,779
12,758
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#11
I HAVE spoken to the management of the hotel and they carried out their own investigation. I had told them I was mainly concerned about this happening to other guests. Soon after examining who came into the room through lock records, someone was considered the main culprit and was not allow to come onto the premises. When I left a few days later, they claim they were wrapping up the investigation, but refused to divulge any information. I was also informed that the "higher ups" were alerted to this incident.

I know it was foolish to not use the safe. But at this point, I must learn from my mistakes and move forward.
At this point I would try one more time with the hotel asking them the outcome of the investigation and requesting one more time that they reimburse you the stolen funds. Tell them you should have filed a police report.

And why not try to contact the local police there and find out if they can do anything. All they can say is no and you never know- they might do something. Tell them you are concerned for other travelers.