How Hotels Are Changing to Keep Guests Safe Amid the Coronavirus Pandemic


Like almost everything else, staying at a hotel is going to look very different from what guests have been accustomed to in the past.

In response to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, hotels and resorts are implementing new safety protocols in order to keep customers and staff healthy.

National hotel chains like Hilton and Marriott are sparing no expense to implement deep cleaning practices and technology that allows for more contactless interactions across the board, reported NPR.

Disinfecting keys and surfaces is priority number one.

"They will conspicuously wipe the guest key in front of you before they hand it to you,” said Jim Coyle of Coyle Hospitality. “When you arrive at a desk, you're going to see hotel staff wiping the desk clean in front of you even though there's nothing on it."

Other high-contact areas like doorknobs, door handles and thermostats will also be thoroughly cleaned.

But communal room items that guests are used to finding may become a thing of the past.

"They will see that some of the items in the room that could likely be fingerprinted by previous guests — magazines, notepads, pens — those items have been removed from the room,” added Phil Cordell, Hilton's global head of brand development.

Other amenities said to be on the endangered list are room telephones and the fully-stocked minibar.

"I think the death of the minibar is probably finally here," Coyle added.

Checking-in online or via an app, remote controls covered in plastic and even a digital key that lets you unlock the door using a smartphone are just a few of the other practices that could become more commonplace.

Despite all the modifications, it may still not be enough to ease the fears of even the most well-traveled guest.

"There's something about slipping between the sheets — the clean, white crisp sheets of a hotel — that's just incredibly relaxing, especially if you've ... had a hard, tense day at work, and it's just so wonderful,” frequent business traveler Liz Oppenheim told the outlet.

“But I think I will be anxious."

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