7 Gross Facts About Hotel Rooms
Getting to stay in a hotel is one of the better aspects of travelling. You have a clean room, housekeeping to pick up after you, meals provided, and dozens of television channels.
But don’t be fooled by such havens. Hotels have a dark side you probably don’t know about — and wouldn’t want to know. However, if your morbid curiosity has taken hold, some of the least appealing facts about hotel rooms are available below.
- Bedding and Linens Aren’t Always Clean, Even in 5-Star Hotels
The nationwide online mattress company Amerisleep performed a study on the cleanliness of bedding in hotel rooms that ranged in rating from one to five stars. The company examined more than 3,000 hotels and discovered that three- and four-star hotels could boast of the cleanest bedding. Three-star hotels had 11 inspection violations per 100 inspections and four-star hotels had only five.
Two-star hotels were the worst, with 18 encroachments, but five-star establishments weren’t far behind with 17. Bed comforters aren’t necessarily changed after every guest departs, and the colorful runners at the end of the bed rarely make it to the washing machine.
It’s shocking to suspect your sheets may not always be squeaky clean when you slide between them.
- Carpeting in Hotel Rooms is Dark for a Reason
Have you ever noticed that most hotel rooms are furnished with dark, low-pile carpet? That’s not a great interior design choice.
Instead, it’s intended to hide built-up grime on hotel carpets. People walk across those carpets in footwear that has been outdoors, food and drinks spill, and the occasional vomit makes its way onto the floor, too.
Major incidents undoubtedly get cleaned and sanitized as soon as possible, but smaller stuff may only receive just a once-over with a vacuum. Who knows how long such carpets go between deep cleanings?
- Remote Controls and Phones are Crawling with Germs
You can almost guarantee that every guest who has stayed in the room has touched both the remote and the phone, including the cleaning crew. As a consequence, according to a Today Show study, remotes and telephones are the dirtiest objects in the room.
The study turned up everything from E. coli colonies to fecal matter to an infectious disease called MSRA that causes painful skin infections. Carry Clorox wipes when you travel so you can wipe down these surfaces!
- Drinking Glasses are Often Not Clean
It seems fairly convenient that hotels provide drinking glasses for your nightcap. But if you knew how those glasses are “cleaned,” you wouldn’t pick them up.
In most cases, maids simply rinse them out with water. Sometimes, they’ll spritz a little cleaning solution on them to freshen them up, which means you could be ingesting chemicals.
The paper caps placed on top of the glasses to protect them from collecting dust might not be sanitary either. Often, the caps are reused, even if they’ve been in a room with several guests. Word to the wise: Bring your own drinking glass!
- You Could Come Home with Bed Bugs
Bed bugs are a difficult irritation to conquer. Though most hotels attack an identified infestation immediately, they can have difficulty staying ahead of it.
If a guest who has bed bugs in his or her home stays in a hotel room, that guest could bring in the microscopic critters. If you’re the next guest to visit, you might take some home with you.
If you’re worried about picking up bed bugs, throw everything into the dryer as soon as you get home. The high temperatures should kill any bugs and eliminate potential problems that could result from your travels!
- If You Look Closely, You Can Spot Unidentifiable Stains
There’s a reason many hotels have dim lighting: They don’t want you to be able to look too closely at all the scattered stains. The bedding, towels, carpets, drapes, and even the walls can be littered with permanent marks from who knows what.
In many cases, these stains have likely been sanitized, so you shouldn’t have to worry about germs. However, it makes the skin crawl when you think about what might have caused it.
- The Air Is Filled with Allergens
If you wake up with a sore throat or feel stuffy after sleeping in a hotel room, you’re not alone. The air could be filled with dust mites from an HVAC system that’s rarely cleaned.
The drapes and furniture are also probably filthy, and every time someone disturbs them, they release particles into the air that you breathe. These are all difficult to clean, and there’s a pretty good bet they haven’t been scoured in a while.
Will this information keep you from staying in hotels on your travels? Probably not.
However, it might encourage you to bring disinfecting wipes and discourage you from taking off your shoes during your stay – oh, and collecting germs that you probably don’t want.