There is nothing not to love about stepping into a hotel room for the first time. It’s a luxurious feeling being able to uncover a plush bed that’s waiting for you to cosy in, the fully stocked minibar for all your midday snacking, and then there’s the tub just calling out your name. With that said, what is not visible to the naked eye is the cesspool of germs and bacteria lurking within.
In no particular order, here are the seven filthiest parts of any hotel room, just so you can take note the next time you are travelling, whether for business or leisure:
1. TV remote – Not only has it been touched by a plethora of hands, the little nook and crannies on the remote are sweet spots for grossness. Think body hair, bodily excretions (OMG!), dust, food particles, cosmetics, bed bugs and more. If you have a Ziploc bag on you, insert the remote in it before using it, and never leave it on your bed before you fall asleep!
2. Shower surfaces – We hate to break it to you but the tub is a breeding ground for bacteria. The moist environment makes it much easier for organisms and fungus to grow, and if you smell mildew, stay away at all cost. The next time you hop in, run the water at the highest temperature for a minute or so with some shampoo or shower gel beforehand.
3. Bed – It goes without saying that people, well, do stuff on the bed aside from just sleeping. Yes, you’ve got new sheets and a duvet cover, but underneath there may be urine, semen, sweat stains, dust mites and so much more. If you can, try to avoid covering your face with the duvet to lessen your exposure to any reactions.
4. Shower head – These fixtures should be replaced yearly, but chances are that’s not practiced at your hotel. This puts you at risk of being exposed to a bacterium called legionella, and yeap, it is being sprayed directly onto you. Before you stand under the shower the next time around, let the water run for a bit so whatever that’s ready to pounce can be gotten rid of.
5. Soft furniture – That loveseat may be the comfiest, but it definitely isn’t the cleanest. Some hotel guests sit on them nude and this leads to the spread of staphylococcus bacteria, which may cause staph infections. You know the drill – Only sit on it fully clothed or not at all.
6. Toilet – To be fair, the chances of you being affected by fecal particles are very slim, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Should your toilet be soiled or less cleaner than you had expected, request for your room to be changed immediately. You can also wipe down the seat and flush handle with an anti-bacterial wipe prior to using it. It’ll help more than you know.
7. Carpet – Dust mites and other bacteria may be embedded onto the carpet, no matter how much it is being vacuumed. Not to mention, some hotel rooms are not very well ventilated, so the dirty air gets circulated within the space. The solution? Use your in-room slippers at all times, or wear socks!