Top Five Overlooked Tasks When Cleaning Guestrooms

When room attendants are centrally focused on cleaning the more visible living areas of the guestrooms, some items may go overlooked. Here are the top five tasks room attendants often fail to complete when cleaning an on-change guestroom:

Lighting. Turn on every light to ascertain if any bulbs need to be replaced or if a lamp has been unplugged by a previous guest.

Television and remote control. Clean the TV screen with a dry dust rag, and sanitize the remote control with disinfectant. Test the remote to ensure the TV turns on and off and receives a clear broadcast. Leave the volume setting at a moderate level.

Alarm clock. Ensure the clock is plugged in and operational with a correct time setting. Double check that the alarm mode is deactivated so it will not go off in an unoccupied room and ring incessantly.


Seat cushions, mattress, and bed frame. Inspect removable sofa or armchair seat cushions for stains or damage, and clean or replace as needed. Cautiously inspect between cushions, between the mattress and box spring, and under the bed frame for misplaced or dangerous objects. (Note: Never stick your hand or fingers between seat cushions or under a mattress without being able to see what is down there; many room attendants have been pricked by discarded, uncapped needles.)

Drawers, closets, refrigerators, and microwaves. Pull open drawers to look for trash or misplaced guest items and wipe them clean. Inspect the closet and remove any non-hotel hangers left behind by the previous guest. If the guestroom is equipped with a refrigerator, mini-bar, or microwave, check for abandoned guest items or trash and clean as appropriate.

Dr. William D. Frye is an associate professor in the College of Hospitality and Tourism Management at Niagara University and coauthor of AH&LEI’s housekeeping textbook Managing Housekeeping Operations.

Photo credit: Housekeeper via Bigstock.

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Dr. William D. Frye is a hospitality educator, researcher, consultant, and former hotel general manager. He is the co-author of AHLEI’s housekeeping textbook Managing Housekeeping Operations.


  1. These are great tips on how to properly inspect a cleaning service. Working in the hotel and commercial cleaning industry for several years, I have learned the discipline that comes with a proper cleaning. Especially in 5-star hotels. Now I apply it to our local house cleaning services in Riverside, CA.

  2. Absolutely agree with this. We do not know the guest behaviour so it’s always the best to check every single detail on the hotel rooms upon customer’s check out.

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