The travel sector is rebounding with a vengeance, and holiday bookings have started to surge once again, which can only mean one thing. Family holidays could well be round the corner! Nothing quite beats the feeling of dropping bags in your hotel room after a long flight, with a long holiday of luxury and relaxation ahead of you.
But – especially in this day and age – it pays to keep an eye out for dirt and germs, even if your hotel room appears spick and span. There are four areas in particular you should be wary of, and take steps to address in order to keep your holiday the best it can be.
Blankets and Bed-Heads
Before you start to think about packing your own bedsheets for your next overnight stay, the sheets you sleep in will absolutely have been cleaned by the hotel’s maintenance staff before your arrival. However, there are other sheets and fabrics which may not have had the same treatment.
If your bed is adorned with decorative blankets, there is a chance that these haven’t been cleaned for a long time. They definitely will not have been cleaned as often as the daily-use bedsheets, making them a potential breeding ground for bedbugs and dust mites. Meanwhile, your bed’s upholstery may not have been cleaned since the bed’s installation – making it prone to carry all manner of dirt and grime.
It is easy to forget how many hands touch certain items, especially when a hotel room is yours and yours alone for a period of time. But items like TV remotes are commonly handled, especially so after a hard day of work or sightseeing, when visitors put their feet up and browse the channels or pay for a film.
As such, TV remotes are touched more often than the light switch – and with no guarantee that the cleaning staff know to clean these controllers regularly, the possibility is high that hotel TV remotes are carriers for contaminants.
It is hard enough to keep carpets clean in your own home, let alone in a hotel room which sees high traffic of visitors on a weekly basis. Cleaning staff will of course vacuum regularly, but dost motes will cling to the fibres of the carpet through static electricity – and many spills and stains will simply soak in to the material.
To avoid contact with the dirt and grime hidden in your hotel room’s floor, bring slippers with you – and make use of the hotel’s swanky sliding wardrobe to safely store your clothes, so as not to dirty them by placing them on the floor.
Ice buckets are often seen as an underrated luxury when arriving in a hotel room. They offer you the chance to fix up a smooth, cold drink, or to keep a nice bottle of white on ice while you prepare for an evening on the tiles.
However, ice buckets in hotels can have a sinister truth to them: while they are often cleaned in the kitchen potwash, they are also often used – by guests – as alternatives to the toilet when it comes to urgent matters such as vomiting. With no guarantee that your ice bucket has been cleaned thoroughly, you may want to source your own ice and receptacle to avoid potentially ingesting the germs of another.