Lost and Found

Common and strange items left behind by guests in hotel rooms

The list of items left behind in hotels is altogether incredibly impressive and strange. Hotel guests seem to be notorious for leaving behind prized and personal possessions when checking out of hotels. This seems surprising considering the agony you go through in not forgetting to pack them in the first place. The lost and found department of hotels have seen employees left dumbfounded by the number of strange objects forgotten by travellers.

Most common items left behind are the ones we painstakingly try to remember to pack. These may be: phone or laptop chargers, clothes, underwear, jewellery, electric toothbrushes, toiletry bags, books, laptops or tablets, satellite navigational tools, mobile phones and suitcases. The question does beg asking – how do you leave a suitcase behind?

In one article by Divinecarol.com, 10 of the strangest items left behind included: false teeth, wigs, money, dogs, birds, adult toys, fish, wedding rings and car keys.

Seeing that books are regular items carried by travellers to while away the time on a long haul flight or extended stopover, it comes as no surprise that it is also an item easily forgotten. Here’s one astounding statistic for the history books: Travelodge notes that over 20 000 books were left behind in as many as 38 000 rooms with an astounding third titled ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ by EL James.

In the drive to providing the oddest list of left-behind items on holiday, Travelodge seems to hover in the top spot. Their list of left-behind items includes:

• A winning EuroMillions ticket
• Keys to a Bugatti
• A stamp album worth £250,000
• A box of 200 Queen Elizabeth masks
• A valuable set of Olympics tickets
• A trunk of Cadbury chocolate bars
• A diamond encrusted wedding ring
• A Persian Chinchilla kitten worth £600
• A suitcase of vinyl records
• A set of false teeth with diamonds
• A Rolex watch worth £50,000
• A Tiffany engagement ring
• A pilot’s training manual
• A Kenwood Magimix worth £600
• Joseph’s Dreamcoat
• A pantomime horse
• 7,000 copies of Fifty Shades of Grey
• 76,500 teddy bears

A common cited reason for leaving behind personal possessions, be they expensive or extraordinary is the fast pace of life.

What happens to left-behind items

Travelodge has initiated a policy that has been in practice since January 2012 that such items as left behind by guests, if not claimed within three months, would be donated to Cancer Research UK charity shops across the UK.