The specifics of hotel mystery shops will depend on the client, the amenities offered by the property, and what they wish to evaluate. Often, the shop begins with the reservation process. The mystery shopper evaluates the service provided by telephone reservations agents. How long were you on hold? Did the agent use the correct greeting? Did they ask if you are a member of the hotel’s loyalty program? Did they confirm the details of your reservation and thank you for calling?
Once you arrive at the hotel, you may be expected to make observations about every aspect of your stay, starting when you drive up. Was the exterior clean and well-maintained? Did a bellman offer assistance with your bags? How was the check-in process handled? You will be given many specific criteria against which the staff and hotel should be evaluated.
During your stay you will typically assess cleanliness and service in many areas of the hotel. Your room, obviously, but also restaurants, gift shops, the pool, exercise facilities, etc. You may be asked to order room service, get services at the spa, or request special service. For example, some hotel mystery shoppers carry a burned out light bulb with them to check maintenance services. They replace a working bulb with the one they brought, then call to report the non-working lamp. The shopper notes how long it took someone to respond to the call and how they handled the problem.
The oddest thing I have ever seen, though, was the hotel mystery shop where the shopper was asked to take something from the room. No, the secret shopper was not expected to walk through the lobby carrying a television (!), but they might put a towel in their suitcase. The reason for this was to see if a charge later showed up on the shopper’s credit card for the missing item. If the shopper was charged, they would be reimbursed by the hotel.
Hotel mystery shop reports are typically very detailed, and may involve writing extensive narratives. Of course, some of these complex shops include significant fees in addition to reimbursement of all expenses. Some of the easier hotel mystery shops that do not involve as much narrative writing may be reimbursement only or include a small fee.
There are many mystery shopping companies that offer hotel mystery shops. If you would like to be a hotel mystery shopper, be sure to apply to the companies listed below, among others: