Are Hotel Rooms Without Clocks Next?

“Staying at the HR San Antonio which has been one of my favorite properties, but is also, sadly, a place where Hyatt likes to ‘test’ various cutbacks. For a time they eliminated shower gel but brought it back, they eliminated full service breakfast service over a year ago (buffet or fast food are your only choices — no menus and no room service except fast food delivery), and now it appears the bedroom clocks are gone…”

Are Hotel Rooms Without Clocks Next?

That observation — which was posted by FlyerTalk member lighthouse206 — continues with “Call me old, but I like clocks and would prefer to NOT rely on my cell phone. Are clocks phasing out everywhere or is this just a ‘test’?”

At first, this reminded me of the reason why desks are being eliminated from hotel rooms; but I must admit that it also reminded me of when FlyerTalk member MarTN questioned as to why a cabinet in the hotel room — which included a microwave oven and a refrigerator — had three panels on it emulating the appearance of having working drawers instead of it being equipped with three real drawers…

…but then I thought to myself about my habits of using a clock radio in a hotel room. The only time I actually used one — other than to see what time it was — was when I needed to wake up at a certain time. I would always test the clock by changing the time of the alarm to ensure that it indeed was functioning properly; and after the test, once again change the time of the alarm while setting the wake up function properly. Depending on the clock radio, this was more trouble at some times than at other times.

Then I started using a portable electronic device — whether it was a portable music player, mobile telephone or tablet — to be the back-up device to the alarm clock…

…and then I just simply started using a portable electronic device itself and forego the alarm clock altogether. Sometimes I will set two or three times to wake up to an alarm, just in case. The volume is indeed loud enough to wake me up. Bonus points go to the hotel or resort property if there is a place next to the bed where I can plug in a USB cable.


First, I prefer a desk in a hotel room — or even a table which is a good height on which I can use a laptop computer or place my belongings. My experience at a Tru by Hilton hotel property is an excellent example of being in a hotel room without a desk.

The days of in-flight entertainment equipment on some airlines could be numbered primarily because of the advent and proliferation portable electronic devices — either because they can provide custom entertainment to their owners; or they could be used to access in-flight entertainment provided by the airline.

The offerings of in-flight entertainment — even those as extensive as what is offered on flights operated by Etihad Airways — are usually sub-par, in my opinion; and simply do not interest me most of the time. Give me a window seat any day, as whatever is outside of the window will usually capture my attention more anyway and cause my mind to wander.

Similarly — primarily due to portable electronic devices — I likely would not miss alarm clocks if they were eliminated from hotel rooms; and in fact, I no longer use one at home. Alarm clocks are an added expense to a hotel property which take up space on night tables; do not always operate properly; and do require minimal regular maintenance and cleaning — yet my portable electronic devices provide more functionality.

The radio function of alarm clocks has also become more obsolete — as has terrestrial radio in general, for the most part.

Let us not forget that the televisions in many hotel rooms have the functionality of an alarm clock as well; and some hotel rooms with these televisions are not equipped with actual alarm clocks.

As for whether any lodging company is actively eliminating alarm clocks from hotel rooms, I have not seen official word on that.

I know not everyone agrees with me; so I am curious as to your thoughts about alarm clocks in hotel rooms: would you miss them if they were eliminated from them?

Please read this review of my experience at the Hyatt Place Richmond/Chester hotel property, at which the clock radio shown at the top of this article is located. Photograph ©2018 by Brian Cohen.

9 thoughts on “Are Hotel Rooms Without Clocks Next?”

  1. Nate says:

    Not to mention some people like to set the alarm for 3am as a prank and then leave the room

    1. Brian Cohen says:

      I must admit that that has never happened to me, Nate.

      I guess I was fortunate.

  2. Kodoma says:

    The real winner is when an alarm clock in an empty room next to you goes off blaring, and you’re in a beach condo with no night staff to come turn it off! Good riddance I say.

    1. Brian Cohen says:

      I think I vaguely remember experiencing that once, Kodoma — but it was too faint to be annoying to me.

  3. EJ says:

    Brian, do you ever use a hotel wake-up call via phone? This used to be my go-to technique due to the loudness of most hotel phones and the presumed reliability. I have found myself migrating to using my phone, personally.

    1. Brian Cohen says:

      That used to be my preferred method of waking up in a hotel, EJ — but after at least one missed call, I deemed it unreliable and would just rather do it myself.

  4. Barry Graham says:

    I find clocks to be a necessity but have been reminded in other countries (either the UK or Israel or both) that they are not commonplace everywhere. Personally I would rather sacrifice the much more expensive TV that I don’t need or want in my room just like we don’t have one at home – or at least have the option to request a room without one.

    1. Brian Cohen says:

      I rarely use the television myself, Barry Graham — so I generally agree.

  5. Bright Steve says:

    This reminds me back to the old days. 🙂

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