When the TV network, ABC, did an undercover investigation on hotel rooms, they found out that — hold tight! — 73% of the glasses in the rooms were not cleaned or sanitized properly. Sure, it’s ok to look for all available plugs to charge your computer and phone as soon as you enter your hotel room, but there are a couple of other things that are way more important to check out.
At ViralSection, we made a list of important steps that every traveler should follow as soon as they set foot in their hotel room, in order to ensure a safe and comfortable stay during their trip.
1. Check the mattress or mattresses for bedbugs.
You might think that bed bugs only happen in low-cost hotels, but it’s not always a matter of luxury since bed bugs can even be transferred to 5-star hotels via a guest’s clothes and personal items. When you arrive at your room, check the bed first. Look for stains or small brown and black dots on the covers, then pull back the bedspread and sheets, and inspect the mattress too. If you do find something, go straight to reception.
2. Take off the comforter.
The hotel maids might change and clean the sheets regularly, but that doesn’t apply to the comforter or duvet. It’s risky to assume that these things are even clean, so if you travel often, it would be a good idea to carry your own blanket with you. Otherwise, you can just use the sheet under the hotel comforter and take off the comforter completely.
3. Use sanitizing wipes to clean up things that were most definitely touched a lot (like door knobs or the TV remote).
Another important step is to quickly sanitize the most common things everybody touches in the room, like the door knobs, the wardrobe handles, and the TV remote. A study showed that TV remotes are on the list of the dirtiest items found in hotel rooms. Try to use anti-bacterial wipes to clean up those surfaces or use some alcohol on a tissue.
4. Make sure your card works and that the room door locks.
When they show you to your room, remember to check whether your hotel card works and, more importantly, figure out how it works — they usually come with instructions. Also, see if your door locks properly. Most people think that it just automatically locks, but it’s good to be sure that there is no malfunction there. Locking the door both when you are out and when you are in, is the safest option.
5. Lock the windows and balcony doors, especially if you have kids.
This is mostly a measure that should be taken during a family vacation, but it also applies as a safety measure for anyone else too. Make sure to lock your windows and balcony doors, especially if your room is located on a high floor. Kiddos can be very curious, so it’s better to have secured the room and to begin with all the risk factors. For adults, it’s another way to ensure that nobody is going to mess with your privacy.
6. Check to see if the temperature controls and the air conditioner work properly.
A balanced temperature in the room guarantees a good night’s sleep and a comfortable stay. Upon arrival to your room, check to see if all the temperature controls are working, and try the heat and the air conditioner. If there is anything wrong, contact the staff to either fix it or move you to another room. You don’t want to be freezing cold in the middle of the night. It’s better to set things straight at the beginning.
7. Make sure that the phone in your room works.
This is both a safety and a comfort rule. Be sure that you have an operational line and that your phone works fine. From room service to housekeeping and for emergency support, something that requires a connection to the front desk might happen and it’s good to make sure you’re connected.
8. Read the escape map and locate the available exits.
We have all probably seen that there is an escape map on the back of the hotel room door. But few of us have spent time actually studying and committing to memory the closest emergency exits. Some hotels even place their evacuation plans at the ground level. There are about a dozen emergency situations that might strike at any time, from a fire to a natural disaster. To be safe, we need to be prepared.
9. Check to see if your bathroom has all the essentials (towels, toilet paper, etc.).
Looking at whether your bathroom is fully equipped is another one of the first things that every traveler should do after entering their hotel room. Check to see if there are clean towels, if there’s enough toilet paper for all guests, and if you have the proper toiletries, if the hotel provides them.
10. Use the “do not disturb” sign on your door.
Every hotel room has its own “Do Not Disturb” sign for a reason. Hang yours on your door and be sure that no one will enter your space unexpectedly. Housekeeping might burst into your room unannounced and find you in the middle of an awkward moment. Just make sure to remove it in the morning, so that you’ll get fresh towels and a clean room.
11. Make sure there are no hidden cameras around.
That’s a tough one, but we do live in the tech ages and we need to be prepared for everything. Even though it’s not very common in hotels, there is always a “you never know” when it comes to hidden cameras. Run a check on your room for misplaced objects, strange gadgets, or red lights and double smoke detectors in one room.
12. Wash out all available glasses with hot water and soap.
As reported earlier, hotel glasses might look untouched and clean, but there is a huge possibility that they are not. Do yourselves a favor and wash any glass well, with hot water and soap, before using it. This will help you to avoid germs and bacteria, which could ruin your vacation mood.
Bonus: Remember to reset the alarm clock.
This is more of an enjoy-your-stay tip. Before going to sleep, remember to reset or turn off the alarm clock. The previous guest might have wanted to get up early, but you don’t, or you might have a flight to catch and need to be at the airport on time.
This could be a great travel routine to follow. What’s the very first thing you notice when entering a hotel room? Do you already do any of these checks? Share your thoughts in the comments.
Preview photo credit shutterstock.com