Clean and Safe
In the time of COVID-19, the words “Clean” and “Safe” are equally important and are what both hotel employees and guests are looking for. It would be difficult to convince your employees to come to work and guests to book if they have even the slightest doubt about how you’re keeping your hotel clean and safe amidst the pandemic. In this article, you’ll learn hotel reopening guidelines on how to keep your property Clean and Safe against the high risk of COVID-19 infections.
Cleaning and Disinfecting Products
Cleaning is of course part of any hotel’s daily routine, but nowadays, you have to practice a whole new level of cleaning. One of the hotel reopening guidelines that you need to follow is to use the right cleaning and disinfecting products.
The US EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) has a list of products that they have approved as effective against COVID-19. These products could give protection not just against viruses, but against bacteria and other bloodborne and airborne pathogens as well. Many of the EPA-approved disinfectants contain one or more of these active ingredients:
- Hydrogen Peroxide
- Ethanol (Ethyl Alcohol)
- Hydrochloric Acid
- Isopropanol (Isopropyl Alcohol)
- Sodium Hypochlorite
Make sure to check the label and follow instructions on how to safely and effective use the product(s).
Cleaning and Disinfecting Protocols for Surfaces and Objects
HOW, WHAT, WHY, and WHEN to clean are all part of hotel reopening guidelines on cleaning and safety. These protocols are based on the CDC’s guidelines and should be practiced together with using EPA-approved cleaning and disinfecting products.
Frequently touched surfaces and objects e.g. elevator buttons, door handles, and so on, need to be disinfected frequently. How frequent? At least DAILY. Take note that the frequency of cleaning and disinfection should be based on the level of use and this includes (but is not limited to) reception counters or check-in and check-out counters, stair handrails, room keys and locks, etc.
Remember this: Cleaning with soap and water helps decrease the amount of virus on surfaces and objects — reducing the risk of exposure. Using disinfectant, on the other hand, kills those germs so the risk of spreading infection is further lowered.
Cleaning and Disinfecting Protocols for Guest Rooms
Cleaning guest rooms properly is naturally part of the list of hotel reopening guidelines whether or not there’s a pandemic. Again, we’d like to reiterate that because of the threat of COVID-19 infections, cleaning the rooms and other hotel areas have been taken up a notch or two!
It’s a must to wear gloves (the disposable kind) during cleaning and disinfecting activities. Clean first using soap and water, then proceed to using disinfectant.
Great attention needs to be paid to hard nonporous, frequently touched items like toilet seats, television remote controls, water faucet handles, high-touch, hard nonporous items including television and airconditioner remote controls, temperature control panels, toilet seats and handles, alarm clocks, and luggage racks — to name a few.
Tips on how to clean soft surfaces found in each guest room e.g. rugs and carpets and drapes are also included in must do hotel reopening guidelines.
- You can clean soft surfaces with soap and water or cleaning products appropriate and approved for use on those surfaces.
- If possible, launder those items in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. It’s best to use the warmest, most appropriate water setting, then make sure to dry the items completely.
- Disinfect with EPA-approved (or EPA-registered) disinfectants.
- Vacuum as usual.
In the event that a guest is presumed to be COVID-19 positive, the affected guest room should not be used for service. The room should be quarantined for at least 24 hours based on CDC guidelines. Before the room is returned to service, it should undergo enhanced cleaning and disinfecting. Cleaning and disinfecting should be done in accordance with CDC guidelines, with the use of EPA-approved products.
Other Hotel Reopening Guidelines for Cleaning and Safety
- Physical Distancing
Proper physical distancing should be observed e.g. at least 6 feet away from other people. Areas that are prone to “queueing” e.g. by the reception counters, at the lobby, etc should be clearly marked. This will serve as a reminder for appropriate physical distancing. Hotel furniture and other public seating areas should be rearranged to promote physical distancing, especially during meetings and banquets.
- Handwashing and Sanitizing
Handwashing using soap and water is still the preferred method, but in the absence of soap and water, alcohol based sanitizers will do. Of course, your hotel should have soap and water available all times in the restrooms and guest bathrooms. Making hand sanitizer dispensers available for use by employees and guests especially in high traffic areas is also recommended.
For more hotel reopening guidelines on cleaning and safety in the time of COVID-19 and other tips, feel free to reach out to our team at Hogan Hospitality Group.