May 31, 2012


When I was in New Zealand, I worked for a while as an all-around lodging caretaker.  Part of the duties of course is cleaning the room and preparing the bed for the next guest.

It amazes me how some, not all, take the liberty of paying a hotel room to leave a place grossly untidy, messy, and in some cases downright dirty especially in the toilet.  So whenever I myself have to stay overnight in a hotel/motel/cabin, I try to do certain things that will be good for the environment and considerate of the cleaning staff or chambermaids as sometimes they are called in plush hotels.  Remember Jennifer Lopez?

Here are a few suggestions to make you one pf the best hotel guests ever and feel good about doing good!

At home, do you use a different towel every day?  Why waste detergent and water?  I stick to using one hotel bath towel and face towel within an average of three days, considering of course frequency of usage.

My motto is once forgotten, forever lost.  To make sure no hanky, undie or anything else is left in your hotel room, and at the same time really help the room cleaner save a big step, unwrap the bed and the pillows of its coverings.  Just plump the bed sheets, blankets, pillow cases, bed covers on top of the now-bare mattress or on a table, counter or couch nearby.  The cleaner can then immediately dress the bed with new clean sheets.

Turn off the room thermostat when you are out of the room or checking out of the room.

Turn off the fridge or lower to minimum level one or two when not being used.  Take care in setting it to zero especially if the freezer has some ice.  Once the ice melts the water will flood the floor.

You just ate out.  Save those napkins and used them as your glass coaster or to wipe out any puddles in your room especially around the sink.

During the summer, leave the window ajar slightly open, if not too cold, to let fresh air in.

Got too many tourist books, magazines, maps?  Leave them for the next guest in the common areas or in one of your room drawers.  If done neatly, hopefully it won’t be thrown away by the cleaner.

Just use one trash bin in the room.  This will save on garbage bags.  And if you have the time, throw the garbage in a main receptacle (there is usually one somewhere in the hotel) so that you can recycle the still relatively clean trash bag you were using to begin with.  And I know some people will say, “Well this is a bit too much…”  Only if you can.

Not checking out for several days.  Give the cleaner some downtime by hanging the “Private” sign or calling the front desk and telling them no room cleaning is necessary.  Do you clean your room every day?

Hang your used towels to dry – this will be a lot easier to handle by the cleaners.

If you can afford it leave a tip.  You will make the day for one person and you will be happy too!

And the coup-de-grace, fold the end of a toilet paper to a V.  This will be a shocker. 

Return your magnetic room key so it can be re-used.

One time in Crescent City, California, I did most of the above.  When I came back to the hotel a week later on my way back home, the desk clerk I think learned of what I did, and gave me an upgrade.

Niceness begets niceness.

Here’s  a reading suggestion: THE POWER OF NICE

By Linda Kaplan Thaler and Robin Koval  - shows in both business and personal life, it pays to be nice.

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