Staying in hotel rooms is supposed to be a very relaxing, de-stressing experience. After all, we are away from home, perhaps visiting family or friends, or we are just trying to enjoy a nice vacation we treated ourselves to. Having to worry about the cleanliness of the hotel room we are staying in is not supposed to be on the agenda. For one Imgur user, the experience was quite disturbing.
A hotel visitor was just about to get all settled in for the night after a busy day. After all, who doesn’t want to get a good night’s sleep while they are staying in a hotel? As the man crawled into bed, he heard a crinkling sound beneath the sheets. That’s when he found the stranger’s jaw-dropping note.
Already confused as to why there was even a note laying within his sheets, he read the note that warned: “If you’re reading this, then housekeeping did not change your sheets!”
The note shocked him as he realized that this note was proof that housekeeping indeed did not wash his sheets, and that the bed he just so willingly crawled into, was just slept in by a complete stranger.
This is not the first time warnings have been made for tourists in regards to the cleanliness of the hotel rooms they stay in. According to RN Central, there are hidden health risks you actually take each time you stay at a hotel. If you are not cautious, or aren’t aware of the following most hazardous hotel areas or hotel related items, you could get sick, waste your money, or even develop further health problems later on in your life—all blame pointing towards the hotel you stayed in:
-Bed Bugs: These little guys can live in the carpet, the mattress, and even the wooden furniture, thus traveling alongside passengers to and from different places. If your hotel didn’t wash the sheets you slept in–you might have brought those bed bugs home and didn’t even know it.
-Hot Tubs: Although a relaxing addition to your vacation, hot tubs are playgrounds for viruses, bacteria, and fungi. Even if the hotel regularly chlorinates the water, how often do you think they maintain the piping system to regulate cleanliness? If the hot tub you relaxed in is infected, it could leave you with lung and skin problems.
-Ice Buckets: The very ice bucket you filled up with ice could be the same un-sanitized bucket the visitor before you used as a vomit bucket. Usually, after a guest vomits in the bucket, they will just rinse it out with water and put it back on the counter for housekeeping. Well housekeeping could look at the clean-looking bucket and not think anything of it. Enter new guest, and now you are using what was just a vomit un-sanitized ice bucket for the ice you will consume.
-Carpet: Housekeeping will tend to vacuum the carpet before the next guest arrives, but that isn’t really deep cleaning it. A guest could have spilled something and probably did not wipe it up properly to where mold spores, usually impossible to see by the naked eye, are now forming without you even realizing it.
-Swimming Pool: Who doesn’t want to lay by the pool while on vacation? With the exception of snowy or rainy weather of course, this is often the hot spot for guests when they stay at hotels. If the hotel regularly maintains and chlorinates the water, that will help, but how do you know if they do? Giardia and cryptosporidium are two types of bacteria that chlorine cannot kill.
-Buffets: One of the perks of staying at hotels nowadays is they throw in a complimentary breakfast buffet for their guests. It sounds delicious, but how long has that food been sitting out when you happen to grab a plate? How do you know other guests have washed their hands before accidentally grazing the next piece of toast you reach for? Did a kid sneeze on the stack of pancakes you are eyeballing?
-Drinking Glasses: Following the concerns with the buffet line, drinking glasses are in that same boat. If the restaurant area gets busy with hotel guests, sometimes the workers will just quickly wipe the glasses down without sanitizing them first. They do this so they can keep up with the demand of how many people are passing through the restaurant. Again, how do you know the glass you are drinking out of has actually been properly cleaned?
-Bathrooms: Although your first thought is to immediately think the shower or toilet is the culprit, it’s actually the faucet and the counter. Housekeeping will clean the bathroom after each guest, but they use the same sponge and mop each time they clean. Can we say germ cross-contamination between multiple guests at a time?
Knowing about these hazards before you stay in your next hotel room will only prevent you from future issues you will have to deal with in the long run. Hopefully you have not stayed in a dirty place yet, and won’t in the future.