Hygiene and cleanliness are always a crucial part of managing a hotel. But as tourism begins to speed up again as countries relax pandemic-related restrictions, it is becoming more important than ever.
As guests begin to show up again, some will be nervous about the possibility of infection and looking to you to help ease their concerns. Even those without such reservations are likely to expect higher standards of hygiene.
According to the institute of hospitality, 78% of visitors consider cleanliness to be the most important factor in choosing a hotel - and with this study being completed before the pandemic, it would be fair to assume the number is even higher.
It’s likely your hotel has already needed to implement some changes due to the coronavirus pandemic, such as new coronavirus cleaning strategies, warning floor mats in the entrance, or improved ventilation. But now that visitor numbers are growing and things are beginning to look a bit more normal, it’s the ideal time to elevate your hygiene standards even further in order to maximise the visitor experience, boost tourist confidence and help prevent future spread of the virus.
Here are our top tips for improving hygiene in a hotel environment:
Clean & Restock Bathrooms More Often
It may be relatively obvious that bathrooms and washrooms can be a hotbed of viruses and bacteria. The simple fact is that failing to clean your bathrooms comprehensively will increase the chances of infection for both staff and visitors.
Ensure you have new and effective paper towel dispensers or hand dryers available so that anybody who needs to dry their hands is able to do so quickly and without touching any potentially contaminated surfaces.
It’s also important to provide both hand wash dispensers inside the washroom and hand sanitiser dispensers outside the washroom, both as often as possible so that people always have access to quickly clean their hands.
There are also less common products available that may help to further reduce infection risk and provide a positive surprise to visitors, such as toilet seat cleaner or disposable toilet seat covers.
Put Hand Sanitiser Dispensers in the Right Place
The more dispensers the better, but it’s important to put them where they are needed. Near the entrance and before reception are among the most important areas as they ensure everyone entering and leaving the building is reminded to clean their hands.
However, other important areas include before the restaurant entrance, before shared facilities such as swimming pools and changing areas, and potentially even outside room blocks, providing hotel visitors with a convenient place to sanitise on the way out each day.
Make Contactless Checking in an Option
You can offer things like allowing customers to check in online to go straight to their room without needing to visit reception, or allow people to pay via their smartphone. Anything that reduces the visitors’ need to touch things will help to reduce infection, and also show them that you have thought about every process in depth, giving them a warm first impression of your hotel and it’s cleanliness.
Step Up Cleaning Processes in General
Extending your cleaning routine to be more comprehensive, more regular, and more hygienic will be noticed by visitors and help them to feel safe and comfortable.
You need to sterilise items daily across both visitor’s rooms and public areas of the hotel, including items that would normally be cleaned less often, such as TV remotes, plug sockets etc.
Step up your schedules and double up on most tasks. It can also be a good idea to post up these schedules and make it clear what changes you have made in order to instill confidence.
Use a Booking System for Services in Crowded Areas
Crowded service areas of your hotel such as the gym, swimming pool or massage suite can be a high risk due to the close proximity of multiple visitors and employees, often in one enclosed room with circulating air.
Consider using a booking system to allocate time slots to visitors for these areas, reducing footfall dramatically and ensuring people can safely use the facilities without being exposed to high risk of infection.
You can build your cleaning routine into the time slot system, ensuring there is time to clean the entire facility and wipe down surfaces such as massage tables or handles on gym equipment before the next time slot begins.
Digital systems can also help you reduce risk in other ways, for example providing a digital menu that visitors can access on their phone will reduce the amount of people passing around physical menus that are very easy to contaminate. You could even take this a step further and allow visitors to control things like lighting and air conditioning via their phones, reducing the amount of physical hardware they need to touch in the room.
Hire a Professional Hotel Cleaning Company
While most hotels already have either a contract with a commercial cleaning company, or their own internal cleaning team, it’s unlikely that your previous setup will be enough to keep you up to date with all the new requirements for keeping your visitors safe. Doubling up on cleaning routines especially may be difficult or impossible for your existing team to keep up with.
If you use your own internal cleaning staff, temporarily hiring a professional cleaning team will help to pick up the slack, ensuring all tasks are done comprehensively, correctly and without being rushed. If you already use a commercial cleaning team, it may be time to step up their services, cleaning more regularly to keep up both appearances and safety.
To learn more about this, consider contacting phs. phs is the biggest and most experienced UK provider of commercial cleaning for hotels, coronavirus cleaning for hotels, and more. We have trained operatives in every town and city in the UK and can enter your premises, make everything spotless and hygienic, and leave again with little to no interruption - allowing your employees to do what they do best - focus on growing your business!SPEAK TO AN EXPERT