The night shift. Hate it or love, there comes the time in each receptionist career that they find themselves behind the front desk at night. Luckily I wasn’t privileged with it too many times. But today…ekhem tonight is my night….

22:00 At this hour either I would be in my pyjama or I would enjoy a beer in some cool bar. But tonight nothing like that…time to go to work.

23:00 Ok let’s start! Fast exchange of the information from the previous shift and I’m in the receptionist mode.

Anyone who says that ‘work at night must be easy! There is nothing to do, right?’ can see my face like:

Oh yey, you are right, Hehe…


Actually many people think in this way, so they leave work for the night shift. Which in the end makes a hell lots of work!

So between, closing, system, preparing all the reports, invoicing, charging no shows above all you need to endure drunk people. Oh have I mentioned fighting with the system which doesn’t always works like you want?

Since it is a weekend many people pass through the reception. Going for the parties and then coming back totally drunk…well that’s what it is I guess. As long as they do not annoy me, I can have at least some fun. And watch people how they are turning from the calm ones to the drunk devils that they keep inside hidden (still waters run deep, huh?).

1:00 ‘Excuse me, can you call for a taxi for us, we want to go to some striptease bar’….

Seriously I don’t need to know where you want to go – I think – ‘Yeah, sure no problem, I will call’ (big, fake smile on my face).

2:00 A group of happily drunk people with their own music from the mobile phone are starting to dance in front of the entrance door. It looks like they have fun… I’m not sure if I should make an applause or just throw them away. At least some entertainment…

3:00 Yet another drunk guy comes to disturb my ‘calm; night shift. This one, for a change, says sorry to everyone around while throwing 50 euro to everyone. If I would be mean I could earn some extra money but instead I just send him to his room. Poor guy…I wonder how he will feel in the morning seeing his wallet empty (update: the next night he was as drunk as the day before…).

4:00 Sleep…sleeep…I want to sleep! I have a crisis. It looks like I’ve done everything so I can just enjoy the rest of the time…maybe some movie?…

4:15 I guess no movie…people are coming in and out asking if they can drink something. Well sorry guys but here the bar is closed (‘fortunately’ – I think).

4:30 I’m praying that nothing strange will happen for the rest of the night…

4:45 No one heard my prayers. The girl came to the front desk (and I’ve seen her before drinking with two guys – and they were drinking A LOT):

-‘I’m sorry but there is a guy (one of her friends to be exact) who is sleeping in the bathroom, I think you should take him to the room”


– ‘Excuse me? Me? It is your friend not mine’…

Fortunately another guy is taking care of HIS friend.

Seriously people do you think that I’m in here as a nurse or police? I’m a receptionist not some kind of guardian of drunk people.

6:00 Just one hour more..I start the countdown. A completely drunk guy (what a surprise) comes to me:

– ‘Until what time is the check out?’

– ‘Until 11’ – Oh boy, I don’t think you will be able to get up.

6:15 A guest  complains that the strange dude in his room is taking a shower already 4 hours and doesn’t seem he will finish soon. I go to the bathroom doors, knock and ask if he is fine:

– ‘Yeah, I’m fine, do I need to check out already ? Is it 11?’

I’m looking at my watch, hesitating just for a second (it’s after 6 am) and then replying with a devil smile:

– ‘Yes!’.

I mean what the hell! Taking a shower for 4 hours?! I do not want to know what he was doing there…

6:30 A completely drunk couple comes to the front desk asking for a room. The girl smells so much alcohol that it throws me away:

Me: ‘Sorry guys but even tho we have rooms the check in is from 15’.

I obviously had plenty of rooms free so they could check in at that time but you know what? I already closed my shift and I didn’t like those guys not even to mention that they were too drunk.

7:00 My colleagues from the morning shift arrive. ‘Alleluia!’. We quickly exchange the news, I say ‘good night’ and run home to my sweet bed.

Nope, I still don’t like the night shifts.

Make sure to check out other stories from “The Receptionist Diary” Series:

Multifunctionality Is My Second Name

How To Screw Up The Whole Hostel With One Click

The Wi-fi Armagedon

The No Show Story

A day from the hostel life

Posted by Ewa Gabara

Posted by Ewa Gabara

Founder of Don’t Mess With The Receptionist. I geek out on hostels and I’m a long-time receptionist turned into a copywriter. I help the hospitality and travel brands conquer the world with words.

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