When it comes to hotel rooms, cleanliness matters. Many studies have shown that among all problems experienced by guests, unclean rooms have the greatest negative impact on satisfaction. According to research, almost 70% of hotel guests rank hygiene and cleanliness as the most important factor when it comes to choosing a hotel, as well as making recommendations to friends, family and colleagues. To deliver a great first impression of your hotel, cleanliness is one way to achieve this. Below are a list of reasons why it is important to ensure hotel rooms are in top condition.
From the moment guests open the door to their room, they are already making judgments on the adequacy of the accommodations. An unclean hotel room is the most common factor that would put people off from returning to a hotel (76%) – more than bad service and poor facilities! Furthermore, nearly eight in 10 respondents (79%) stated that cleanliness is the main factor that influences their perception of a hotel’s values. (The Importance of Clean Hotel Rooms, Nexon Hygiene, Rachel Green, August 13, 2017)
Just one negative review can lose hotels around 30 guests, according to an Empire study. It’s not surprising this can have severe consequences in revenue losses. According to the Empire white paper, 97% of travelers say cleanliness is an important factor when booking accommodations. So, when your hotel (or cruise ship) receives a damaging review describing your hotel as ‘dirty’, you can just imagine the kind of impact that one word has on your bookings. In fact, the study also revealed 90% of travelers will avoid booking hotels described as being ‘dirty’ in a review. Cleanliness is so important to European and American guests, they prioritize housekeeping above bed and furniture comfort, customer service, room lighting and internet access. (Housekeeping and the Real Impact on Your Hotel’s Reputation, The Booking Factory Website, Tikky Dawwalee Davies, January 29, 2018)
The above article was written before the pandemic. Imagine how much more critical customers will be post COVID-19. – Gregory J. Schwab, Founding Partner & VP of New Business Development – Health4Luxury
The hospitality web portal, SETUPMYHOTEL, highlighted 30 checklist procedures for Guest Bedroom Cleanliness and Condition Service Standard that housekeepers were required to follow before the COVID-19 pandemic. With new protocols to combat the coronavirus, housekeepers must now adhere to more than 50 health and safety procedures foreach guest room. The potential for human error increases substantially for these hotel (or cruise ship) employees.
After finishing her first job as a housekeeper, Vee said she swore she would never stay at a hotel again. “When you always visit five-star hotels, you think you are getting the best services, clean linen and everything,” she said. “But when you actually go behind the scenes to do the work, you realize that not everything goes as you expect. “The 19-year-old student, who worked at a five-star hotel in Melbourne, said it was common for hand towels to be used to clean toilet bowls and for housekeepers to be rushed from room to room. At a smaller hotel, she said, doona covers and comforters were very rarely changed, and practices were “the same” everywhere she had cleaned. It’s been an issue of concern for years, but up-to-date research data is limited. A union-commissioned investigation in Melbourne in 2010 found a “hygiene crisis” in five-star hotels that was attributed to lack of time given to cleaners to clean the rooms. Two years later, a study published in Scientific American found hotel room remote controls, carpets, telephones and cleaning items had high levels of bacteria — and about 81 per cent of hotel room surfaces sampled had at least some fecal bacteria. (How Clean is Your Hotel Room? Housekeepers Say The Accommodation Industry Has Dirty Secrets, The ABC, Yara Murray–Atfield, May. 16, 2019)
Once again, this article was written before housekeepers had to also deal with the multitude of new health and safety protocols. The chance for human error increases with the ever-increasing duties thrust upon hospitality employees.
Hotel companies have been promoting new cleaning initiatives for months as a way to regain traveler confidence. But guests at some hotels in the United States say they are not living up to the promises. (Hotels Tout Cleaning, But Guests Say ‘My Room. Was Dirty’, NY Times, Jane Levere, August 26, 2020)