Hotels are services many of us use and while some stay in them more than others they are still an integral part of a country's economy which is why we think it's important to be scrupulous and alert your attention to the things hotels wouldn't like you knowing about.
After all, the overheads that go into running these places are substantial, and to keep costs at a minimum, staff are told by managers to do whatever necessary to save time and money, something that is illustrated clearly in these secrets.
With that in mind, here are 15 things that will no doubt shock you and make you think twice when next booking a room.
1. Your Room Is Never As Clean As You Are Led To Believe
The whole point of paying for the privilege of a hotel is not to have to worry about clearing up after yourself, but according to many hotel users online, that isn't always the case. In fact, while the room may look tidy upon arrival, it's worth nothing that hundreds of visitors have likely stayed in the room before you and because of this quick turnaround the bed blankets and bed spreads are hardly ever washed.
Worse, bed bugs are a real problem due to the amount of people sleeping in the same bed in a short period, so it's always worth checking the hotel's reviews before you book- even if it is only for one night.
And of course, you are more than entitled to request fresh sheets.
2. Beware Of Television Remotes
If the prospect of sleeping with bed bugs sends shivers down your spine, then you'll be appalled to know that many of the television remotes in hotel rooms can often contain more germs than a toilet seat.
And that goes for any device or area of the room which has been commonly touched. And whether that be the light switches or the door handles, a study by the University of Houston found that these areas of the room are the least cleaned and because of this they can contain levels of bacteria more commonly associated with toilet seats and sinks.
3. Never Drink From Hotel Glasses
You don't have to be a domestic god or goddess to know that cleaning glasses with furniture polish isn't the correct way of doing it yet that's how they achieve that sparkle. In more extreme cases, there have even been occasions where maids have washed the guest's glasses in the toilet because they didn't receive a tip.
So always be kind to maids, and tip well!
4. You Can Take All The Complimentary Toiletries With You
Admittedly, this depends on how nice the toiletries are. If you're staying at the Ritz, then you're more likely to want to take the lavender and peach soap bars home with you as opposed to what's on offer in the bathroom of a bog-standard bedsit.
But whatever floats your boat, hotel staff are required to replace every single toiletry and stock up on new ones once the occupant has vacated the room so feel free to take what you want.
5. Dead People
While attempting not to sound alarmist, you'll be surprised how many people die in hotels on a yearly basis. Think about it. How many drunks, and alcoholics check-in to hotels before taking their lives? A lot, unfortunately, and that's because hotels can often be lonely places.
In other cases, maids have been known to walk into rooms after repeatedly knocking only to be met with a murdered victim. Death is ubiquitous after all, but you'll be surprised how far staff will go to keep their chains away from the media whenever a death occurs on the premises.
6. Last Minute Cancellations Needn't Require A Fee
We're often told by travel agencies and online booking companies that any last minute cancellations will require a cancellation payment, but if you're wise, then there's an easy and legal way around this.
The day before your arrival, phone the hotel and ask to move your reservation to the following week. Providing they have a spare room they will do this free of charge, and then follow that up with a call the next day informing them of your wish to cancel the booking. With that being said, this tactic will not work if your reservation has been pre-paid from websites like Expedia.
7. Lost And Found
How many times have you forgotten something important on holiday only to ring hotel staff up hoping it's there to met with a simple 'no'? Probably at least once, but it's worth nothing that anything valuable left behind is likely to be taken by a cleaner or member of staff.
Of course, hotels have lost and found systems and not every cleaner will keep what they see, but it's worth remembering that most come from poor backgrounds so if they see something of value most won't think twice about taking it.
Incidentally, the 10 most common things guests leave behind are: mobile phone chargers, underwear, false teeth and hearing aids, shoes and items of clothing, car keys and house keys, toiletries, adult toys, electric toothbrushes, laptops and jewelry.
8. Sexual Relations Between Staff
Hotels are big places, and there are bound to be rooms that are unoccupied, which leads to some rather naughty going ons. Yes, members of staff who work together have been known to get it in on in the vacant rooms, and because they are obviously going against their company's operating policy, they are not going to inform their manager that the room needs cleaning.
So without making you feel paranoid, there's a high chance your hotel room may have been violated before you've even set foot in it.
9. Book Directly Via The Hotel And Not From An Online Price Comparison Website
Websites like lastminute.com and comparethemarket.com are excellent price comparison sites for getting the best deals, but by using their services, you are paying them an additional fee simply for booking your holiday via their algorithm.
To avoid this, phone the hotel that you wish to stay with and inform them of the deal and that you are willing to book directly if they match the price.
In most instances, the hotels prefer if you do this as they don't want to lose revenue from other third-party commission-based websites.
10. Prices Are More Expensive In The Morning
Most people book hotel rooms first thing in the morning because they want to make sure they snap one up before they are all full but that is rarely the case and as others have the same idea hotels deliberately price rooms at a higher rate following the higher demand.
To offset this common mistake, make your reservation just after 6 pm. Why? Because this is when most canceled reservations free up, leaving hotels desperate to fill these rooms to cover potential losses.
For hotels in bigger cities, it may even be appropriate to call around 4pm.
11. Valet Parking
Entrusting your car with a valet employed by the hotel may appear convenient, but there have been many cases where valets have incurred significant damage to the cars.
Of course, valets are professionals who, for the most part, take their job incredibly seriously but in other instances, whether they were on the receiving words of a rude customer or if they were simply excited to be driving an expensive car, they caused significant damage to the vehicles.
12. The Coffe Machine Isn't Always Cleaned Properly
By now, you've probably realized that most things in hotel rooms aren't best cleaned, and coffee machines are no exception. According to an investigation by ABC News, for instance, cleaners, rather than undertake the correct cleaning protocol, only swirled the coffee pots in water, which experts found lead to a build-up of bacteria.
In one case, a cleaner was found to be using the same cloth to clean the coffee maker as she had been when cleaning the bathroom floor.
13. Always Request A Corner Room Or One On The Top Floor
It may sound picky and slightly odd, but rooms at the top tend to be larger because the height of the ceiling doesn't need to meet a certain measurement, while the views and noise levels differ considerably to rooms on lower grounds.
But why a room in the corner of the hotel? Well, according to experts, at least, corner rooms are always larger, regardless of what level they are on.
14. On Most Occasions, A 'Fully-Booked' Hotel Will Still Have Available Rooms
If you're particularly desperate for a room and aren't willing to take no for an answer, then it's worth requesting a room that is out of order.
More often than not, these rooms will only present minor inconveniences, with a faulty TV likely being the worst of your worries.
15. Don't Add Personal Items To The Mini-Bar
It's tempting to be prudent, and stock up on cheaper alcohol at your local supermarket but just be warned: You might have to pay for it.
It may sound strange but hotels are money-making businesses, and if they find out you've been using their fridges to stock your alcohol instead of theirs, you might be charged for it.
In other cases, guests have been known to refill certain spirits like vodka with water to avoid payment. Not that we condone such practices...