"" Writer's Wanderings: What's Lurking in Your Hotel Room?

Friday, August 03, 2012

What's Lurking in Your Hotel Room?

My daughter-in-law shuddered as she recounted the news show she and my son had watched a while ago. It was one of those exposes that had hidden cameras, black lights, and swabbed cultures to detect the germs that might be lurking in your hotel room. Her worst fear was realized when the hidden camera showed viewers that a maid rather than replace and/or wash a glass in the bathroom instead just used the cleaning rag she was wiping the sink with to wipe out the glass. Eeewwww.

While I'm sure that is probably not the practice of most hotels, it does lead one to worry a bit. How germaphobic are you? I can usually tolerate most things. If the hotel is reputable and the room, especially the bathroom, looks well cleaned, I'm okay. I do carry a package of Clorox disinfectant wipes though just in case it may be questionable.

Here are a few things you may want to do and remember for a healthier you in a hotel:

1. If you have disinfectant wipes, use them to swipe the light switches, the phone, the door handles (of the bathroom especially) and absolutely the handle on the toilet to flush. And don't forget the remote control!

2. Use the plastic cups that most hotels provide that come wrapped in cellophane or plastic wrap.

3. Unless you are at one of the hotels that has the practice of giving clean bed clothes from the top down--meaning the bedspread, don't use the bedspread as a means of covering up at night. Too many possibilities of what might have been placed on top of that spread including dirty suitcases, shoes, and, well, who knows what.

4. If it appears the cleanliness of your room is not up to standards, don't hesitate to ask for another room or another cleaning. If they aren't willing to comply, start making phone calls to nearby hotels to see if there are vacancies. Do it right there at the front desk in front of the clerk.

I've mentioned before my favorite site for checking out hotels and other accommodations before booking. It's Tripadvisor.com, a great resource for all sorts of travel decisions. It could save you an Eeewww or an Eek! along the road.

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