You’re leaving your resort pool or beach, maybe for lunch. You carefully place your book, towel and other inexpensive items in such a way that there’s no mistaking this chair is taken.
But back from lunch you come, and there’s someone sitting in your chair. Your belongings are on a different chair nearby or perhaps they’re with the pool or beach attendant. You’re furious. But who moved your stuff? The guy sitting in your chair? The hotel workers? Hard to tell.
In a recent survey from Hilton HHonors — Hilton Hotel’s loyalty program — 37 percent of travelers admitted they have or would steal a saved beach chair when its occupant walks away. At first, such behavior seems awful. But is it really? Beach/pool/deck chair saving has become such an issue that several hotels and cruise lines have enacted policies of removing a person’s belongings after a certain period of time so other guests can use the chair. In fact, far more — 77 percent — say they’ve waken early just to claim a chair.
Last summer, both Carnival Cruise Lines and Norwegian Cruise Lines both introduced time limits to how long a person can be away from their deck chair before their belongings are removed. At The Water Club at Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa in Atlantic City, the hotel places guests on a wait list once all the chairs at the pool have been occupied, takes the cell phone number of the party and calls when seats are available. If a chair has been unoccupied for 30 minutes, the hotel removes the items and offers the seat to the next person on the list.
Interestingly, Hilton Hotels don’t have a policy covering beach-chair hogging or beach-chair stealing.
Readers, how long do you think it’s reasonable for a person to “save” a chair?