A user on TikTok has gone viral after turning a scary experience at a hotel into a warning for other people on the platform.
In a video with over 615,000 views, comedian and TikTok user Heather McDonald (@heathermcdonald) recounts an experience she had at a hotel, using her story as a warning for users on the platform to be vigilant.
@heathermcdonald Watch and be aware. You can never be too safe. #hotel #hotelroom #traffick #traffickingawarenes #traveling #juicyscoop #juicyscooppodcast #safety ♬ original sound – heathermcdonald
According to McDonald, she had just returned from lunch to the Westin Dallas Fort Worth Airport hotel when she heard a knock on her door.
“I’m like, ‘Hello?’ And this guy—I can’t understand what he’s saying, but he’s saying something, and I immediately double-lock the door,” McDonald recalls.
She then questioned the man at the door again, who now claimed that housekeeping told him that she called, among other claims. McDonald told the man she was not interested, then looked through the peephole.
At this point, she says she discovered that the man was not dressed in a way that would indicate that he worked for the hotel, nor did he have the typical items one would associate with someone in that role.
After the man left, McDonald called the front desk to report the incident, acknowledging that she may have been wrong but that she just wants to be safe. She says she then called her assistant to warn her about the man.
“…Better safe than sorry, and especially when you’re a woman traveling alone, don’t open the door for anyone, and look through the peephole,” McDonald concludes. “You can also ask them to leave it at the door…if you want more towels, or something…It’s scary out there.”
In the comments section, users shared their own travel tips.
“I always leave the TV on and say goodbye as if I’m with someone else when I leave my hotel room, and I announce I’m back when I open the door,” wrote one user.
“I travel a lot alone. First thing I ever do when I walk in is lock the double lock- you were smart! Good job! I also talk to an imaginary husband,” claimed another.
Other users said that the hotel should have more security in place to prevent incidents like these from occurring.
“All hotels should at least make you swipe your room key to go up in the elevator,” suggested a commenter.
The Daily Dot reached out to the Westin Hotel and McDonald via email.
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*First Published: Nov 6, 2022, 11:43 am CST
Braden Bjella is a culture writer. His work can be found in Mixmag, Electronic Beats, Schön! magazine, and more.