Essential Items to Sanitise In A Hotel Room
Researchers from the University of Houston discovered that bacteria levels in hotel rooms could be between 2 to 10 times higher than the levels accepted in hospitals. While we know that this doesn’t really mean anything or that it’s not any dirtier than some homes, it is the stranger factor that we are most repulsed by, and the many strangers and accumulative effects at that.
Housekeeping have many rooms to go through and are given no more than around 30 minutes each room. Although we really don’t want to put you off travelling anywhere, some items in your hotel room can be a breeding ground for all sorts of illness-inducing nasties.
Without being too much of a germaphobe, here are a few precautionary things to sanitise before settling in, just to “stay safe”.
Finger Contact Stuff
The first item to watch out for is room keys/cards, as they are almost always never cleaned, often pass through several hands and can carry just as many germs as money does. Other frequent finger contact surfaces include door handles, thermostats/air conditioning control panels, TV remotes, phones, bedside lamp switches and the hotel information folder.
If you’ve got a bottle of hand sanitiser, add a good squirt to one of the small hand towels and give the item a wipe to make sure that any resident germs are wiped out. Otherwise, soap and water will do just fine.
Check For Bed Bugs
Hotels can be a hot spot for these awful parasites. Chances are you won’t find any, but bed bugs do not discriminate, hostels or 5-star, accommodations. Without unpacking yet, start with checking every inch of the bed including mattress seams and zippers, under the mattress, and at each joint of the bed frame, especially if it is upholstered. Use a flashlight to examine darker hiding spots. When you are done with the bed, check carpets and furniture. This sounds a bit over the top but bringing bed bugs home with you will probably mean you never sleeping the same again. They are horrible and very difficult to get rid of causing not just physical but psychological discomfort.
Bedspreads, Duvets & Pillows
Start by removing the bedspread and let it stay removed for the rest of your stay. They are known for not being washed as often as sheets. It is not uncommon to see the wash schedule of bedspreads and duvet only every 3 months!
Duvets are usually cocooned in clean sheets and you should be ok as long as there is a clean sheet between you, the mattress and the duvet (or bedspread). For those extra keen, call up and ask for a new pillow and use that for contact with your head and face as they are less likely to have been strewn on the carpet while changing the bed sheets.
Hotel Room Glasses
This may or may not be true but it is not uncommon to hear that hotel glasses or rarely washed and if they are, very unlikely done with any cleaning products. If not cleaned, they may have been given a wipe down, which is no comfort or assurance. The glasses may have been missed and thought unused, if only water was drunk from it.
Whatever the case, the lean team will always assume that all hotel room glasses and cups might not have been given a good wash before our arrival, or could have sat there unused for days on end, so it’s always a good idea to give them a clean yourself before you use them.
Surface Wipe Down
Housekeeping staff have been known to use the same cleaning cloth for absolutely everything, so you’ll want to keep your family safe from germs that linger on your hotel room surfaces.
Use a soaped hand towel and give available surfaces in the bathroom, table surfaces and anything else you may frequently come into contact with, a quick wipe-down.
Lastly, use a towel or sheet on the chairs or sofa, a LOT of people sit on them naked!