Recently, we traveled to Chicago for a long weekend. We stayed on the 18th floor of the Palmer House Hilton, a beautiful, historic hotel in the middle of the loop located just a block from Millennium Park and the Art Institute. This 25-story hotel is a great place to stay; we’d recommend it to anyone who is headed to Chicago. In fact, the only issue we had during our stay was trying to get downstairs in the morning.

Waiting for the elevator to open at the Palmer House Hotel in Chicago.

In many large hotels (and even cruise ships) the elevators can become very busy at certain times – like in the morning as people head downstairs for breakfast or to check out. If you are on a middle floor, elevators going down often pass by because they are full of people from floors higher up. The wait can be pretty long. Fortunately, I learned a trick while staying in a large hotel in Las Vegas a few years ago: You gotta go up to go down.

We stood in the elevator lobby of the Palmer House for a couple of minutes waiting for the elevator to stop. The lobby was pretty crowded, and people there said they’d been waiting for several minutes. So, I pushed the “up” button. Within 30 seconds or so, an elevator stopped, and we hopped on. We rode up to the top floor and when the doors opened, we stayed inside. We got a few odd looks from the people who got on, but when the doors closed, the elevator was packed. We then rode straight to the lobby, past the crowded 18th floor, and were able to get breakfast and continue on with our day.

The next time you find yourself waiting a long time for an elevator down, remember that it might just be a good idea to head up, instead.

Have you ever used this or some other elevator trick? We’d love to hear about it. Leave us a message in the comments below.

As always, thanks for sharing!

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Making the most of midlife.