Hotel rooms could easily be associated with being very clean, given how often housekeeping comes in. But while some surfaces may be gleaming and your towels freshly laundered, some items in the room are often neglected. There’s one object in particular that you’ll most likely use during your stay in the hotel. However, research has shown it is the dirtiest thing in the room – and you may want to avoid touching it.
TV remote controls were found to be the most contaminated items in hotel rooms, according to a study.
The study on contamination levels in hotel rooms was led by the University of Houston.
Remote controls are used by nearly all the people that have ever stayed in that room.
No matter how clean and hygienic your habits are, there’s no knowing what previous occupants were like, meaning the remotes could be crammed with bacteria.
It’s recommended to use a disinfecting cleaning wipe to clean the remote control.
Even a damp hand towel could help a bit should you have no disinfectant to hand.
One top tip is to pop the remote in a transparent plastic bag to avoid touching it at all.
If you don’t have one, try using the shower caps provided in the hotel to protect yourself.
The University of Houston study showed bedside lamp switches in hotel rooms were also highly contaminated.
According to Reuters, the researchers sampled 18 surfaces in each hotel room, testing the total levels of bacteria and faecal bacteria on each one.
The study revealed an alarming statistic as faecal bacteria was found on 81 per cent of all surfaces.
Hotel guests are also warned against using the ice buckets in a hotel room. Instead, holidaymakers should make sure to use the plastic bags that are provided with the buckets.
This is because ice buckets are not cleaned very regularly and people have been known to vomit in them if they cannot make it to the toilet in time.
An investigation by public health inspectors in the cities St Paul and Minneapolis in the USA found ice buckets can be riddled with bacteria.
According to Fox 9, there is no code requirement for ice buckets to be sanitised from one customer to the next.
The hotel inspectors recommended putting a plastic bag into an ice bucket if one is provided.
Reddit users also discussed the problem and the importance of using a bag.
“You really shouldn’t put the ice directly in there. Especially in places that are notorious for partying,” one contributor posted. “From what I hear, people tend to throw up in those if they can’t get to the bathroom quick enough and I’m assuming the cleanup isn’t the best job.”
Vomit isn’t the only bodily fluid guests may have to watch out for in ice buckets. Another Reddit user added: “While staying in a hotel my ex peed in one when I was in the bathroom. That was the last time I ever used an ice bucket.