These neat freaks clean their own hotel rooms
While most hotel guests rely on housekeeping to clean up messes they leave in their rented rooms, some conscientious travelers are now donning an apron and playing maid.
Last week UK resident Darren Dowling posted a picture on Facebook showing his hotel room tag, and it went viral. The photo shows her habit of pulling the sheets off her bed and carefully folding each piece over the mattress before leaving.
The image sent Facebook users into a state of inebriation, with nearly 550 commenters debating hotel guest protocols – with contributions ranging from insisting it’s paid staff to do so, to users claiming that it is a courtesy that should be extended to such workers.
“I always try to leave a hotel room like this,” he wrote in the caption. “Is this the right or the wrong thing to do? »
Nutty or normal, Dowling is not alone.
“I wish everyone would do this,” said Stephanie Thompson, 50, who lives in Cincinnati.
Thompson, the director of National Down Syndrome Adoption Network, has a typical pre-departure cleaning routine that she shares with her husband – 51-year-old firefighter Jon Thompson – to take the pressure off a hotel’s cleaning staff.
For about ten years, at the end of their travels, Jon puts away the suitcases and checks all the drawers to see if the couple has forgotten anything. While this is happening, Stephanie strips the bed of its sheets, gathers all the used and unused towels and puts them in the tub, and condenses all the trash into a bag and ties it up. And even during their stay, the couple – who say they generally keep their surroundings clean and organized – refuse daily housekeeping visits. Plus: they leave a $25 tip.
“I also leave a handwritten note that says, ‘Thank you very much! Have a wonderful day, blessings,” Stephanie told the Post, saying she added a smiley face at the end. “We’ve been doing it for so long, it’s routine.”
For the Thompsons, it’s just the right thing to do.
“I have always been called to serve those who serve people who have the privilege of going on vacation,” Stephanie said. “I don’t even know if these people make enough money to even go on holiday – so their daily life consists of cleaning up after the privileged… My hypothesis is that there are times of their day when they go into a room and it’s just disgusting, and they’re depressed.
Emily Mathison, 34, agrees. She says she never thought her hotel aid scheme was weird until she faced admissions of negligence from acquaintances.
“I go to LA one week a month for work,” said the East Village resident, who works as the creative director of McQueens flowers, a high-end florist. “I stay at the same hotel every time, and I tidy my room and get rid of all the trash.”
But it’s Mathison’s habit of making her bed every day — even knowing that housekeeping unpacks and strips the bed when she leaves — that sets her apart from her peers.
“I didn’t think it was unusual,” she said. “That’s what my mother does. Also, isn’t it nicer for the maid? I make my bed every day anyway — why change because I’m in a hotel? It’s just what I do at home. Clean and tidy and ship shaped.
Dowling’s Facebook posts also prompted responses from hotel housekeepers themselves, who said the gesture was indeed welcome.
“It saves us extra work and makes it easier,” one wrote, while another replied, “You have no idea how much things like this are appreciated.
Dédé Gotthelf, owner of the Southampton Inn in the Hamptons, said its staff faints when a customer goes the extra mile.
“Although it is their responsibility to clean the rooms during and after guest stays, housekeepers and housekeepers are human beings and very much appreciate people who are considerate and respectful,” she said. “There is no need to strip or redo the beds. But throwing out the trash, cleaning up spills, and leaving a room clean and ready for them are much appreciated.
“Especially in these times when CDC cleaning protocols and UVC lights take time to prepare for our next guests,” she added of pandemic-related procedures.
But for the Thompsons, all that matters is serving with a smile, even if they’re the ones doing the serving.
“I want it to be such a treat for them that the next set of rooms they do, if they’re gross, they can go back and say, ‘At least I had a room that was so easy, and I got a tip for that!” said Stephanie.