Last Updated on March 16, 2024 by Vincent Zhu


A comfortable and secure place to stay is a top priority when traveling. While hotels generally provide a sense of safety and privacy, concerns about hotel room security still linger in the minds of many travelers. These concerns can stem from reports of unauthorized access to rooms, theft, or discomfort in an unfamiliar environment.

The importance of extra security measures becomes even more pronounced considering the varying hotel security standards across different locations and establishments. One unconventional yet practical method to enhance your hotel room security is using a simple item in every hotel room: a towel.

This article will detail how to secure a hotel room door with a towel step by step and obtain a more secure living experience.

Step 1: Choosing the Right Towel for Door Security

How to Secure Hotel Room Door With Towel? Details Guide 1

When considering using a towel to enhance the security of your hotel room door, not just any towel will do. The effectiveness of this method largely depends on the type of towel you choose. The key characteristics to look for are thickness and length.

  • Thickness: A thicker towel is preferable as it provides more material to wedge into gaps and can apply more pressure to the door when jammed in place. Thicker towels are generally more durable and less likely to tear or give way under pressure.
  • Length: The towel should be long enough to fold or roll into a sturdy shape but not so long that it becomes unwieldy. A standard bath towel often meets these requirements well.
  • Material: Towels made from denser fabric can offer more resistance. A towel with a rough texture can also provide a better grip when wedged against surfaces.

The rationale behind using a specific type of towel is its ability to fill gaps and apply pressure. A well-chosen towel can be an effective tool to jam a door, prevent it from being easily opened from the outside, or at least slow down someone trying to gain unauthorized access, giving you more time to react.

Step 2: Preparing Your Towel for Enhanced Security

How to Secure Hotel Room Door With Towel? Details Guide 2

To effectively use a towel for door security, it must be prepared and positioned correctly. Here’s a step-by-step guide:

Folding or Rolling the Towel:

  • Lay the towel flat on the ground.
  • If it’s a large bath towel, fold it in half lengthwise to increase its thickness.
  • Start at one end and roll the towel up tightly into a cylindrical shape. The goal is to create a firm, robust roll that won’t easily collapse or unfurl.

Step 3: Securing the Door with a Towel

How to Secure Hotel Room Door With Towel? Details Guide 3

  1. Placing the Towel at the Base of the Door:
    • After rolling or folding the towel into a tight, sturdy shape, place it at the bottom of the door where it meets the floor.
    • The goal is to wedge the towel into this gap tightly, making it difficult for the door to be moved or opened from the outside.
    • This method is effective against doors with a gap at the bottom, as it can help prevent the door from being pushed open or tampered with.
  2. Using the Towel to Jam the Door Mechanism:
    • A tightly folded towel can be used here if the door has a significant gap between the door and the frame near the handle or lock.
    • Wedge the folded towel into this gap, focusing on areas around the lock or handle. The pressure exerted by the towel can make it harder to turn the handle or unlock the door from the outside.
    • Be cautious not to damage the lock mechanism or the door when employing this method.

Remember, while these methods can enhance the security of your hotel room, they are not foolproof. They should be seen as supplementary measures to the existing security features provided by the hotel.

You can check the following video for your reference:

Additional Towel-Based Security Tips

How to Secure Hotel Room Door With Towel? Details Guide 4

While using a towel to secure a hotel room door is a simple and innovative approach, there are other creative ways to use a towel to enhance your security. Combining this method with other security measures can significantly improve your safety. Here are some tips:

  • Makeshift Alarm: A towel can also act as a makeshift alarm. Place it so it will move or fall, creating noise if someone attempts to open the door. For instance, balancing a rolled towel on the door handle so that it will drop if the handle is turned can alert you to any tampering.
  • Visual Deterrent: Even the sight of a towel wedged tightly in a door can act as a deterrent, as it signals to potential intruders that the occupant is security conscious and has taken measures to secure the door.
  • Combining with Other Security Measures:
    • Always use the lock and deadbolt provided by the hotel in conjunction with the towel method.
    • Consider using a portable travel door lock or a door stop alarm for additional security.
    • Keep valuables in a safe or hidden compartment, if available.

Limitations and Precautions

While using a towel for additional security can be helpful, it’s important to be aware of its limitations and take necessary precautions:

  1. Limitations of Towel-Based Security:
    • A towel is not a foolproof security device. It can provide an additional layer of security but should not be solely relied upon.
    • This method is more about deterring casual intruders or adding extra time for you to react rather than providing a robust defense against a determined intruder.
  2. Safety Precautions:
    • Ensure that your method of securing the door with a towel does not prevent you from quickly exiting in an emergency, such as a fire.
    • Be cautious not to damage the hotel property, including the door and lock mechanism, when using a towel for security purposes.
  3. Relying on Hotel Management and Security Services:
    • If you have serious concerns about your safety, it is advisable to bring them to the attention of hotel management.
    • If the door or lock appears compromised or damaged, request a room change or ask the hotel to address the issue immediately.
    • For persistent security concerns, consider choosing accommodations known for their high safety standards.

Remember, personal safety while traveling is paramount. While creative methods like using a towel can enhance your security, being aware of your surroundings, using the security features provided by the hotel, and trusting your instincts are equally important. If you ever feel unsafe, do not hesitate to contact hotel staff or local authorities.

Alternative Methods for Securing Your Hotel Room

How to Secure Hotel Room Door With Towel? Details Guide 5

While using a towel is a creative and resourceful way to add an extra layer of security to your hotel room, several other methods can be employed. These alternatives can be simple yet effective, and comparing them with the towel method in terms of effectiveness and convenience can help you choose the best option for your needs.

  1. Portable Door Locks:
    • These compact devices can be easily installed on most doors without needing tools.
    • They work by preventing the door from being opened even if someone has a key.
    • Compared to the towel method, portable door locks offer a more robust solution specifically designed for security purposes.
  2. Door Stop Alarms:
    • A door-stop alarm is placed on the floor behind the door. When the door is pushed, it activates a loud alarm.
    • This method prevents the door from opening and alerts you and others to an intrusion attempt.
    • Unlike the towel method, it provides an auditory alert, which can be a significant advantage.
  3. Secondary Locking Devices:
    • Devices such as deadbolts or chain locks can sometimes be installed as a locking mechanism.
    • They offer a physical barrier to entry, similar to the towel method, but are generally more secure as they are designed for this purpose.
  4. Window Locks and Security Bars:
    • For rooms with accessible windows, adding locks or security bars can prevent entry from outside.
    • While not directly related to securing a door like the towel method, they are crucial for overall room security.
  5. Safety and Security Apps:
    • Various apps can alert trusted contacts or authorities in case of an emergency.
    • These apps offer a different security than physical barrier methods like the towel.

Comparison with Towel Method:

  • Effectiveness: While the towel method can be a good temporary solution, especially when no other options are available, purpose-built security devices like portable door locks or door stop alarms generally offer higher security.
  • Convenience: The towel method scores high on convenience as towels are readily available in hotel rooms and require no additional equipment. However, portable security devices are also designed for travel convenience, are lightweight, and easy to use.
  • Cost: Using a towel is cost-effective as it involves no additional expense. In contrast, purchasing portable security devices is an extra cost, though it can be a worthwhile investment for frequent travelers.

In conclusion, while the towel method is a handy and cost-effective solution, it’s important to consider investing in specialized security devices for enhanced safety, especially for those who travel often.


The importance of extra security measures in hotel rooms cannot be overstated. Simple measures, whether using a towel to secure a door, investing in portable security devices, or staying aware of your surroundings, can significantly impact your overall security.

Regarding the effectiveness of using a towel to secure a hotel room door, it’s a resourceful method that can be surprisingly effective in certain situations. While it may not replace the security of more robust, purpose-built devices, it is a handy and immediate solution, especially when other options are unavailable.


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About Author

  • Vincent Zhu

    Vincent Zhu has 10 years of smart lock system experience and specializes in offering hotel door lock systems and home door lock system solutions from design, configuration, installation, and troubleshooting. Whether you want to install an RFID keyless door lock for your hotel, a keyless keypad door lock for your home door, or have any other questions and troubleshooting requests about smart door locks, don't hesitate to contact me at any time.