I met a friend a while back who traveled quite a bit for his job, primarily around the Midwest of the United States. We got talking about different aspects of travel when the conversation pivoted to hotel rooms. He and I discussed some of our desires and annoyances we found with our hotel experiences over the years and this blog post captures much of that discussion.
WHERE ARE THE ELECTRICAL OUTLETS?
Electrical outlets are hard to find. Yes, they are available although sometimes they are behind the bed or behind the dresser/TV display. In some hotel rooms, a person has to hunt for them. I mentioned that some forward-thinking hotels have added an outlet or two directly on the desk lamp. He nodded to show his appreciation of that fact but with raised expectations, frustration levels may be raised on other hotels without those nice features.
LOCATION OF TOILET PAPER HOLDER?
Let's move on to the toilet paper holder. Often, this is on the other side of the bathroom. When you use the toilet for the first time and need toilet paper, should guests have to examine the bathroom's figuration? Isn't that the job of interior designers and general contractors?
SIZES OF BATHROOM
Some hotel bathrooms are so small you have to close the bathroom door to use the toilet or sink. Is there not a better design layout to use most of the room's functionality while the door remains open? Especially if you're a solo traveler.
Lack of hooks on bathroom doors or poorly installed hooks. I love hooks in bathrooms, however, if it's a poorly installed hook or dysfunctional, I'd rather not see any.
Some hotels have poor lighting in hotel rooms. From November through February (if not longer), the days in the Midwest can be gray and gloomy. You ask anyone who has ever lived in the Midwest for any period of time, they'll acknowledge this phenomenon. A good benchmark is being able to differentiate between a black and blue sock. If it's a challenge to do so with average eyesight, the hotel lighting may need to be re-evaluated.
SHOWER MAT CHALLENGES
Why can't the shower mat and bathroom door co-exist without bumping into one another between several activities in a hotel room bathroom? In addition, why is the shower mat often scrunched up like an accordion when opening the bathroom door?
TOILET SEAT STABILITY
Why do toilet seats move so easily from side to side? Especially in a new hotel room? Should that not be on the checklist to review weekly and maintain accordingly?
STRONG EXHAUST FANS
Should not all bathrooms have an exhaust fan to eliminate excess humidity? Some rooms do and others don't. When they don't, you have to factor in that time it will take to defog the mirror before finishing your morning dressing routine. Along those same lines, it would be nice to have several speeds on the fan, there are some situations where the exhaust fan is installed but may take a good 10 minutes to rid the area of excess humidity before proceeding. Ensure guests have the right facilities to help make their stay more palatable.
TEA OR COFFEE DURING THE DAY?
I know this is more of a luxury but when more upscale hotels provide fresh coffee dispensers of several varieties is a special treat. The same idea could apply to tea. Having coffee and tea available is a nice perk that many guests appreciate.
LACK OF CHANNEL DIRECTORY IN HOTELS OR LACK OF A SIMPLE TV CHANNEL DIRECTORY
You have just worked a long day and brought back dinner to be eaten in your hotel room and you want to relax and watch the news or your favorite TV show and you're wondering where you can find cable news at 8:30 pm. It's your only night in the hotel so your approach may only have you spend a limited time on this task. If you're having a good day, the TV turns on without issue although there may not be a directory near the phone or through the TV. If you have still had time and patience, invariably a list of programs may be found. However, why do certain hotels not offer a channel directory and if they do, make it simple and straightforward to find?
VENTILATION AND AIR-CONDITIONING CHALLENGES
Sometimes, one has challenges with ventilation or air-conditioning controls. You may think you have it understood only to be woken up later that night with it being too hot or cold. Genius is simplicity. Having a straightforward and easily understood heating and cooling system in all hotel rooms should be the standard.