How to clean a hotel room properly and quickly

Try out these tips and maximise your skills as a professional cleaner.

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Hotel guests look forward to sleeping in comfortable and inviting rooms after a long day of travelling and sightseeing. Good housekeeping is vital to keep guests happy and maintain an establishment’s stellar reviews! 

Wondering how to clean a hotel room fast? Make sure you have a system. Below are some hotel housekeeping tips to ensure you clean as many rooms as possible efficiently. 

Note: According to the Australian government, hotel rooms must be cleaned as soon as a guest departs, especially in light of the pandemic. 

All hotel rooms need a thorough cleaning regardless of the previous occupant’s health status. Frequently touched surfaces, such as door handles, handrails, and light switches, should also be disinfected regularly. 

First, what do you need to clean a hotel room? 

A typical hotel housekeeping trolley includes the following: 

  • A mop and bucket 
  • Floor, surface, and bathroom cleaners 
  • Cleaning cloths 
  • Bleach 
  • Paper towels 
  • Furniture polish 
  • Scrubbing brush 
  • Air freshener and sanitiser 
  • Protective gloves 
  • Vacuum cleaner 
  • Toiletries, towels, and other hotel-provided items 

How to clean a hotel room step by step

1. Make your presence known before entering the room. 

This one’s a given but make sure to knock first and announce your arrival – just in case a guest is still inside the room. Courtesy always goes a long way in making a positive impression. 

2. Air out the room. 

hotel housekeeper opening window curtains and airing out the room

Ventilation is vital to housekeeping in hotels. Open the windows, balcony doors, and the room’s main door to let in fresh air (especially if the hotel is located near the sea). This is a vital step so the room won’t smell of chemicals after you clean it. 

3. Strip the bed and remove linen.  

You can skip this step if a hotel guest is staying for more than one night. But in cases when the guest requests it, or you’re preparing the room for a new guest, remove and change the pillowcases, blankets, and bedsheets.

Inspect the mattress for stains or any visible damage. In case of damage, make sure to report it to the hotel’s maintenance department. 

4. Remove rubbish and other foreign items from the room. 

Empty the trash bins and remove any trash from drawers and closets. If the previous guest accidentally left valuable personal items like a watch, make sure to notify management, so the guest can come back for it. 

5. Dust the room and wipe surfaces. 

Dust all surfaces, including phones and televisions, since these tend to attract a lot of dust. Also, sanitise tables, cupboards, and closets. 

6. Make the bed according to hotel procedure. 

If the bed has no damage, replace the pillowcases, sheets, and bedspread. Ensure the linen is free of stains, dirt, hair, or holes. You may have to do this task according to the hotel’s bed-making guidelines, down to how you arrange the pillows. When applicable, replace decorative pillows as well. 

7. Pay special attention to the bathroom. 

hotel housekeeper wiping toilet seat

Disinfect everything in the bathroom, including the hairdryer, countertop, and toilet. Evidence of the previous guests, such as hair, fingerprints, and mirror smudges, should be gone. The tiniest detail is important! 

Here are more specific steps when cleaning a hotel bathroom: 

  • Remove used towels and mats. 
  • Empty the trash bin. 
  • Clean the shower or bath area.
  • Clean the sink area and tap. 
  • Clean the toilet. 
  • Dust surfaces and wipe the towel rail. 

8. Replace hotel toiletries and other essential items. 

chambermaid holding fresh towels

Guests expect their hotel rooms to be fully stocked with their basic needs. Depending on the hotel, these essentials may include fresh towels, bathrobes, hotel slippers, laundry bags, notepads, coffee, and the like. 

9. Vacuum, sweep, and mop as needed.   

Clean the floor last to avoid sweeping or mopping a second time if dirt falls on the floor while you do other cleaning tasks. Hardwood floors must be swept and mopped, while carpets must be vacuumed. Remove any visible food spots and stains to prepare the room for its next occupant. 

10. Do the finishing touches. 

Before leaving the room, give it one last look-through.

  • Are the windows and balcony doors closed? 
  • Do chemical smells remain, and do you need to use an air freshener? 
  • Were you able to replace the towels and toiletries? 
  • Are all the lights working? 
  • Is the air conditioning at the hotel’s default temperature? 

Find more cleaning jobs and earn extra income. 

We hope these tips help you more confidently and efficiently clean hotel rooms. A checklist can also ensure you don’t miss any detail. If you’re a professional cleaner looking to make extra money, you can also find local cleaning jobs on Airtasker. 

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FAQs on cleaning hotel rooms

Cleaning a hotel room usually takes around 30 to 45 minutes. But how long it takes can vary depending on the size of the room and the state in which the previous guest left it. A basic turndown service may require less time. 

A deep-cleaning checklist may include:

  • Removing the mattress and cleaning the bed frame and headboard
  • Cleaning walls, window glass, and draperies, and
  • Ensuring all furniture is spick-and-span from the inside out. If you spot any damaged furniture, inform the hotel's maintenance department as soon as possible.

There will be times when a room should undergo a much more thorough cleaning than just daily housekeeping. This usually happens during a hotel’s off-season, when guests don’t visit as much. 

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