noise complaint policy

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Old Mar 19, 19, 5:17 pm
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noise complaint policy

I had a rather surprising experience last evening, and I was curious if anyone had experienced similar, or had general insight on the topic.

Short version of the story: I was alone in my room using speaker phone on my cell phone around 9:30pm. I was sitting at the desk, and I had the phone on the desk in front of me, and i was speaking in a normal tone and volume, as were the other call participants. This was not a contentious call. so there was no yelling, foul language, etc. Apparently the people in the room next door to me reported a noise complaint. I got a note under my door talking about group gatherings and stating the hotel's noise complaint policy. That policy was that on the first complaint, you get a copy of the notice and a warning, and on the second complaint, you are evicted, with no refund.

This all ended well in this case, with the other party getting a different room (and once the front desk found out it was me, they were shocked...I've stayed at this hotel hundreds of nights without incident, and I'm pretty sure that even with a second complaint I would have been OK). But I found this policy, if applied literally as written, pretty draconian, especially due to the subjective nature of excessive noise. Also of some interest is that the policy stated that quiet hours start at 10pm, even though they must have called before then. But as written, if the same party called back to report a second complaint, the hotel can evict you.
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Old Mar 19, 19, 8:13 pm
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I doubt Marriott Corp has a policy for noise rather each hotel handles noise separately


im sure you were in the right here and the guest next door overreacted but subject to time zones I may go to bed at an unreasonable early hour ie 7pm. That said I use a white noise machine app to tune out unwanted sounds

doesnt help your situation and really not much to add. Perhaps call the front desk or move on from the situation
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Old Mar 19, 19, 8:15 pm
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That's a tough one. Stay in a hotel enough, and you *will* have your experience ruined by loud, inconsiderate neighbors. And the worst ones are those who won't quiet down after a polite request, and who actually get belligerent about it. It's tough to call the front desk to lodge a complaint, because all they usually can do is send security up to ask them to quiet down. Then, inevitably, the noise starts up again and you get stuck in a cycle. Changing rooms is a pain (and sometimes not even possible), and it just seems wrong that the quiet party should be the one who's inconvenienced.

Rest assured, I am *not* lumping the OP in with that description. It sounds like a simple knock on the door from the next room with a request to turn the phone down would have solved everything amicably. I have to wonder if the hotel would really follow through on the whole "we kick you out at the second complaint" or if that's an empty threat...
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Old Mar 19, 19, 9:01 pm
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Two general comments. No one using a speakerphone ever thinks that they are speaking or listening at anything other than "normal" volume. And earphones with a mic are much clearer than a speaker to participate on a conference call.
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Old Mar 19, 19, 9:23 pm
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When I saw this thread title, I immediately assumed this would refer to loud drunk people spilling into the hallway for a prolonged period of time.

There is something sub-standard about this particular hotel's degree of sound dampening insulation between guest rooms.

Meanwhile, there are phone apps that measure decibels detected at the microphone. Always good to get an objective opinion of how loud one really is. I did that with my kid who claimed he was quiet when playing a video game.
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Old Mar 19, 19, 11:21 pm
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Originally Posted by ikwia View Post
I was alone in my room using speaker phone on my cell phone
Under some conditions cell phones' speakerphones are absolutely shrill and can be heard for quite a distance, more so than a regular telephone's speakerphone. I've heard it in restaurants, airports, public transit, etc. Even in parking lots, it seems like the noise cell phone speakerphones carries much further than normal human voices.

I'm with @dayone -- a headset / headphones are the best solution. You also never know what the other person's story is. If you've been on planes for 15+ hours and are now many timezones from where you started the morning, you want sleep, even if it's 10am local time.
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Old Mar 20, 19, 1:00 am
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Just a note - it's pretty much impossible that voice reproduction from a cell phone's speaker would travel through a wall more than a human voice, unless for some reason a frequency in the vocal range that is boosted on the phone happens to be in resonance with the wall.

The reason cell phone speakers often sound "shrill" is that manufacturers love to overboost the 3k-8k range in an attempt to create a richer tone for media playback, but that's certainly not the frequency that's going to be getting past walls. Meanwhile the lower frequencies on these cell phone speakers are absolutely terrible, often -20 or even -30dB off peak by 500Mhz.

Of course, if the walls are thin enough, anything's going to get through.
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Old Mar 20, 19, 3:27 am
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Originally Posted by dayone View Post
No one using a speakerphone ever thinks that they are speaking or listening at anything other than "normal" volume
FWIW, FT is jam-packed with tales of disturbance/annoyance caused by folk who are conducting, often unknowingly, their conference calls in 'broadcast mode'.
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Old Mar 20, 19, 5:33 am
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Originally Posted by dayone View Post
No one using a speakerphone ever thinks that they are speaking or listening at anything other than "normal" volume.
WHAT DO YOU MEAN? IíM AT THE AIRPORT LOUNGE SO IT IS A BIT HARD TO HEAR. HOLD ON JUST A SECOND...mrrf mrff garble mrff give me a glass of the house red wine mrff...ARE YOU STILL THERE??!...*toilet flushing*
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Old Mar 20, 19, 7:07 am
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Originally Posted by Nuhusky View Post
I use a white noise machine app to tune out unwanted sounds
This! Best travel-related $1.99 I've ever spent!
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Old Mar 20, 19, 7:27 am
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I'm on both sides, as I've gotten noise complaint for conducting normal sound level activity too.

On the other hand, cell phone speakers are the worst. Even when they're not turned up, I can hear that squeaky sound frequency from the other side of the room, it's like jamming my brain and I have to stop myself from confronting that person.

If I'm trying to sleep in my room, I'll definitely be more upset than a lounge or public transport.
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Old Mar 20, 19, 7:34 am
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I've made three complaints myself in my life - one was on a Wednesday night at 11pm, the same night of a dirt bike tournament, and people had propped open their room doors for a multi-room party. Second was 1am when a wedding after-party was held in the room above my wife and I, with blaring music, two dozen guests, and they played House of Pain's Jump Around. Third was another party, when my wife and kids were with me, and at 11pm there was another party in the adjacent room, that I had waited to see if they would calm down at 11.

I think all three were reasonable requests, and security personally delivered a warning to them people - not a note, but security actually went to the rooms to see what the circumstances were (which were pretty clear), and delivered a warning.

It's about context and judgement - in your case, I would have preferred a call to my room or someone coming to the door (yadda yadda, what if DND is on), and I'm sure they would have seen a lone person and just asked if you'd be able to talk a bit more quietly. Not a non-confrontational note, that you don't even know if/when the occupant would see.

I do agree with the "one warning" policy though - if security had determined that there was indeed a valid reason for the noise complaint, then a second or third repeat would be reasonable (again, to me at least). You could have the type of people that get a complaint, and decide to be even louder out of anger. As with the initial warning, such a policy gives the hotel the ability to evict the people... but I would still hope that they use their own judgement to enforce that based on the source of the noise complaint, and if they've attempted to be cooperative.
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Old Mar 20, 19, 7:35 am
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If you were at home and had guests trying to sleep in an adjoining room would you take this call in the same fashion?
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Old Mar 20, 19, 8:33 am
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Originally Posted by BigJC View Post
This! Best travel-related $1.99 I've ever spent!
i use windy which is free, been using for last three years. Actually canít sleep without it
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Old Mar 20, 19, 8:55 am
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Originally Posted by dayone View Post
Two general comments. No one using a speakerphone ever thinks that they are speaking or listening at anything other than "normal" volume. And earphones with a mic are much clearer than a speaker to participate on a conference call.
This. Anyone who uses a speakerphone for a business call should be immediately fired. It's NEVER as clear for the person on the other end of the line, and unless there are multiple people participating there is absolutely no reason for it other than your laziness or cheapness.
(Proper speakerphone systems such as those installed in conference rooms excluded)
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