The Travel Professor
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Friday, July 25, 2008

More on clean hotel rooms

You've probably heard this one before but remove the bedspread. Most hotels do not wash bedspreads after each guest checks out so there is no idea of when it was last cleaned. The frequency of blanket laundering varies from hotel to hotel so if the idea of a previously used blanket spread across your hotel bed gives you the creepies then call the front desk and have housekeeping bring you clean (please stress clean & freshly laundered) blankets. Really freaked out on cleanliness level then bring your own bedding from home.

If it moves in the room disinfect it! Simply spraying a few frequently touched surfaces with some antibacterial sanitizer should make your stay a whole lot cleaner and enjoyable. Key places to spray for germs include the phone, door knobs, the toilet handle, the ice bucket, the remote control and bathroom faucet handles.

As Mother always gently reminds us “Wash Your Hands”! Frequent hand washing has been proven to reduce the transfer of colds and viruses, and will prevent bacteria getting from whatever it is you're touching (why is this remote control sticky?) to your mouth, eyes or nose. So even if your hotel room is poorly sanitized, some good ol' hand washing will keep those nasty germs at bay.

Your room comes tastefully appointed with nice glasses and coffee mugs but avoid these things. Do not assume when you pour yourself a cold glass of water or steaming hot coffee that the glass or mug is clean. In most hotel rooms there's no guarantee that the glasses and mugs aren't simply rinsed off under the tap by the cleaning staff then wrapped in one of those nice paper bags. Stick with the plastic cups that are sealed in a wrapper or run your cup/glass under hot water for a minute or two before using it as this will kill most bacteria. Or you can reuse that 20 ounce hot beverage cup from Mickey D’s or your last fuel stop.

By being diligent and using a few preventive measures you can ward off many of the nasties you may find in frequently used hotel room. A few minutes of prep time and you should be able to enjoy a restful night’s sleep unless your hotel has other guest issues that may prevent this.

If you have any concerns about your room be sure to speak directly with the General Manager as he/she is the one that can really correct your concerns. Speaking with any else at the hotel other than the GM or manager on duty will probably fall on deaf ears. Also be a web buddy and go online and share your honest comments and evaluate this hotel for other travelers. Please be frank but fair in your comments.

Got travel questions or concerns? Email them to Happy travels!