SOP – Front Office – Handling A Drunken Guest / Intoxicated Guest

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How To Handle a Drunk or Intoxicated Guest?

Purpose of this SOP: The front office team should be familiar and trained with the process of handling an intoxicated or drunk guest. The primary objective should be to avoid any injuries to the guest and inconvenience to other guests and also to follow the hotel-defined standard while handling intoxicated guests.

Handling a normal guest in the hotel itself is a very important and difficult task, and handling a guest who is drunk and completely out of his senses is next to impossible and very difficult. The Front Office / Bell Desk / Concierge team should be ready to handle such a situation as well as possibly mention this process.

Handling the Drunken/Intoxicated Guest Standard Procedure:

Because handling drunken and intoxicated guests is very difficult, there is a certain attribute you have to possess:

  • Do your best to deal with each situation without putting yourself at risk.
  • Act politely.
  • Always stay calm.
  • Don’t argue with the intoxicated guest.
  • Don’t embarrass the guest, especially in front of other people.
  • Deal with the situation in a calm, friendly way.
  • Speak to the person directly, and firmly explain that what they are doing is unacceptable.
  • Listen and empathize with your guest.
  • Acknowledge your guest’s anger or frustration, but also remind them that you are responsible for their safety and don’t want to see them get hurt. 
  • Invite the problem guest to an area away from other guests, where you can talk.
  • Talk softly and lead him away from the public area.
  • Point out that if they were sober they would agree that what they are doing is a bad idea.
  • If the drunk guest is behaving rudely then the last option should be to call the security officer but try and handle the situation very calmly.
  • The duty manager or the immediate supervisor should take the drunken guest away from the reception/front desk area.
  • Make the guest realize that this is not the right way to talk and then act very calmly and very politely with him so the supervisor can escort him to his room
  • The manager can also indulge the guest in some other thoughts and just keep the guest calm and as soon as possible send him back to his room.
  • If the guest has come to a restaurant or bar and you decide to ask this person to leave, remember that you are still responsible for their safety (call a cab, get someone to drive them home, or if the situation gets out of control – call the security officer or police).

Training Summary Questions For Handling a Drunken/Intoxicated Guest:

  1. What attributes should you possess when handling a drunken or intoxicated guest?
  2. Why is it important to deal with each situation without putting yourself at risk?
  3. How should you act towards an intoxicated guest?
  4. What should you avoid doing when dealing with a drunk guest?
  5. How should you address the situation with an intoxicated guest in a calm and friendly manner?
  6. What should you do if an intoxicated guest is behaving rudely?
  7. When should you consider calling the security officer?
  8. What actions should the duty manager or immediate supervisor take when dealing with a drunken guest?
  9. How should you make the guest realize their behavior is unacceptable?
  10. What steps should be taken if an intoxicated guest needs to leave the premises?

These questions cover important aspects of the SOP and can be used to assess understanding and reinforce training on handling drunken or intoxicated guests.

SOP Number: Front Office SOP – 62
Department: Front office - General
Date Issued: 01-Jan-2011
Time to Train: 30 Minutes
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