Everyone has heard terrifying tales about filthy hotel rooms. Many of us have first-hand experience with some of these offences. A messy hotel room might imply more than just general ickiness, depending on whether you’re scared of germs or you just go with the flow. It can also be dangerous. Some hazards, like unpleasant leftovers from previous visitors or frightening bedbugs, are more evident than others.
However, how can you tell if your hotel room is hygienic and clean? Even if you can’t see any hairs, stains, or grime buildup, how can you be sure there aren’t bacteria and germs present? Unfortunately, you cannot. There is no way to tell how clean your room is just by looking around, short of bringing testing equipment.
But there are techniques to determine if the cleaning in your hotel room was likely thorough. Most of us are familiar with the feel and scent of clean, fresh spaces. Common hints are also left behind by thorough cleaning. Here are a few things you may look for to see if your hotel takes cleanliness seriously.
Your inspection should begin in the parking lot
There is a good reason why first impressions matter a lot. You can be sure that your initial opinion of your hotel—that they don’t place a lot of emphasis on cleanliness and order—won’t alter.
As soon as you get out of the car, start paying attention to certain important places.
- Is there no trash in or around the parking lot?
- Does the landscaping appear well-kept and robust?
- Is the hotel’s exterior in decent condition and clean enough?
When you first arrive at the hotel, scan the lobby to check if it appears to be well-kept and clean overall.
- Does the lobby have a clean, fresh scent?
- Are the floors cleaned, swept, mopped, or otherwise maintained?
- Do the tables, sofas, lamps, and other furniture in the seating areas appear to have been cleaned and polished?
- How do the employees appear? Do they look generally good-looking or are they unkempt and uninterested?
If you think everything is going well with your chosen hotel accommodation, then let’s head up to our room.
A visual check is essential
Everything that sparkles might not be clean. Look around all the regularly utilised areas, such as the entrance door handles, lobby, elevators, etc., before you enter your room. Spend a few minutes visually inspecting your room, paying particular attention to the bed, where bedbugs hide and can be identified as small brown bugs.
Can the room pass the sniff test?
Is the air in the space fragrant or makes your nose wrinkle? Do you smell fresh, clean air or do you smell disinfection and cleaning products? Do you detect any residual smells or mildew in the restroom? Do you notice any offensive fragrances in your room, such as body odour?
Others only detect strongly irritating or pleasant smells, while some people have extremely acute noses that can detect even the smallest odours. Remember that just because you smelled something bad doesn’t indicate the entire room is filthy. However, most of us are familiar with the aromas created by filth, bacteria, and mildew, and they are NOT the fragrances you want to inhale in your hotel room.
If your room smells unpleasant then it’s obviously not clean!
Check the bathroom
The grout between bathroom tiles is a perfect habitat for the bacteria that cause athlete’s foot and other unsavoury fungus-based illnesses. These tiny spores must be killed by boiling water, and you can be sure that they are still present if there is fungus growing nearby the tub. Fungus accumulates over time, so if you notice black stains or mould that is green in colour, you can be sure that the area hasn’t been cleaned for a very long time. A dirty bathroom will have hair around the plug, soap residue on the shower curtain, and gum-like smears around the base of the toilet.
Remove the bed cover
You won’t need the bed cover, so take it off. You really don’t want to think about the last occupant of the room because bedspreads are not cleaned after each departing visitor checks out. If you’re cold, ask for another blanket from the hotel’s supply, which was probably just laundered. Examine the linens for bed bugs, which appear as little brown specks that may or may not be moving. Use a travel sheet if in doubt to prevent bringing home invisible guests.
Look down the bed’s side
Check the area between the bed and the wall if one side of the bed is close to the wall. Tight spaces are quite difficult to vacuum, but if that region of the floor is clean, the rest of the space will likely be as well.
The light switches and door handles should be checked
A quick glance at the switches and handles will reveal whether the area is truly clean because fingerprints really stand out on them. Even while a dirty door handle won’t necessarily warrant a new room, it will indicate a rushed cleaning job.
Check the cistern Lid
Lift the back of the toilet’s lid and take a look inside for the most foolproof way to determine whether it is clean. No one cleans in there every day (and there is no need to), but the state of the tank clearly shows how frequently the hotel performs routine maintenance. The cleanliness you observe around you is only surface-level if the tank walls are slimy, infested with fungus, or severely discoloured.
How should I deal with invisible bugs, germs, and other undetectable things?
Being prepared before entering a hotel room is the greatest method to safeguard yourself from bacteria and germs. Start by avoiding placing your luggage or other items on the bed or other furniture (bed bugs!). Put your luggage in the bathtub or the hallway until you’re done sanitising.
Before touching anything, sanitise these frequently touched objects and places with a disinfectant spray or sanitary wipes to get rid of bacteria.:
- TV remote control
- Phones, light switches, and lamp switches
- Toilet, sink, and countertops in the bathroom
- Desk, or any flat surface
- Refrigerator handles
- Coffee maker handle
It’s still a good idea to exercise heightened levels of hygiene and alertness after your thorough cleaning and room inspection. Instead of leaving them on the counter, keep your toothbrush and anything else you use for your mouth or face in your travel bag. Never, ever put that comforter back on your bed. Wash your hands frequently. When you take a bath, run the exhaust in the bathroom to prevent the formation of bacteria.