How Clean are Hotel Rooms?

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hotel roomsDuring the fall season, many of you like to travel to neighboring cities and states to see the leaves change colors. Some of you may stay overnight at a hotel. But have you ever wondered how clean are the hotel rooms? This information comes from personal experience and from speaking with the housekeeping staff at several hotels. After reading this, the number one rule to follow: Always wash your hands before eating or touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.


Hotel Room Housekeeping

After checking into a nice hotel chain in southern Illinois, I noticed that the bathroom floor was wet because the toilet was leaking. Someone from housekeeping came to my room and tightened a pipe, mopped the floor and wiped the toilet while wearing an orange pair of gloves. The gentleman from housekeeping also noticed that I was missing some towels. He kindly brought towels to my room, but with the same gloves, he wiped the toilet with. Ewww! Sadly, this happens more than you would think.

People typically check-out of a hotel by 11:00 am and a new group is checking in at 3:00 pm. The cleaning staff has 3-4 hours to clean 150 or more hotel rooms. How many minutes are really spent on one room with good hygiene in mind? Imagine everything in your hotel room being wiped with a rag that could have been used to clean the toilet. Every surface in the room is wiped with toilet water. That’s disgusting. For that reason, I bring a pocket pack of Clorox wipes anytime I stay in a hotel. Wipe the room down, especially the bathroom. Clean the faucet and handles on the sink and toilet. Don’t set your toothbrush on the counter until you wipe that down as well. I used to think that because the cups had those white curvy covers over them, they just came from the dishwasher. The covers are just there for aesthetics. Some places have the cleaning staff rinse them in the bathroom sink, without soap, and they get dried with towel already in the room.

Hotel sheets and bedding are another story to be concerned about. From kids jumping on the beds, stepping on the bedspread with shoes, bedbugs, people sitting on bedspreads naked, sweaty or dirty, hotel bedspreads are not sanitary. Although the sheets may get washed after each guest, the bedspreads do not. One hotel chain has actually addressed this. You may have noticed the Hampton Inn now has the top sheet sewn into the bedspread, like a duvet. The Hampton Inn actually washes the duvet covers after each guest. I really enjoy staying there for that reason.

To combat most of the possible unhygienic items in a hotel room, I bring Clorox wipes, a face towel, and a pillowcase. Although there are several other items I could bring, I don’t want to lessen the room in my suitcase for things I would like to bring back. Bottom line: I make sure I wash my hands before eating or touching my face.