NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Hotels across the country are making dramatic changes to the way they clean facilities amid the COVID-19 pandemic, but they’re not all living up to these higher standards.

Marlon Castrillo spends an extra 10 minutes in each room at the Marriott in Bethesda, Maryland. Cleaning starts by disinfecting the room using an electrostatic fogger and its hospital-grade disinfectant mist.

“We know that guests believe quite reasonably that they can control their interactions with people in a hotel,” said Arne Sorenson, CEO of Marriott International. “Once you’ve gotten into your guest room, you’re in your own space. And so the challenge for us is one we think we can meet, which is can we deliver a room that the guests can have confidence is clean.”

But that’s not the case everywhere.

An Inside Edition investigation found multiple New York hotels, including the Trump International, which is owned and managed by the Trump Organization, Hyatt Place Times Square and Hampton Inn Times Square did not adequately clean the rooms between guests.

Among the failings, the investigation found that the hotels did not change the pillowcases and bedding.

While the Trump International hotel categorically denied Inside Edition’s findings, the Hyatt Place and Hampton Inn apologized for the housekeeping oversight and promised to do better.

“At a time when hotels are only operating at about 24% occupancy, they have no excuse for not changing the pillowcases and not cleaning them,” said CBS News Travel Editor Peter Greenberg in an interview with CBS2’s Jessica Moore.


Greenberg says that while most hotels are doing the right things to protect their guests during the pandemic, hygiene in hotels has always been an issue.

“I go back to what I used to do before the pandemic. My checklist was every time I entered a hotel room, I would take the bedspread and throw it into the corner and never touch it again.,” said Greenberg.

In addition to moving the bedspread, Greenberg suggests that you clean any remote controls in the room, telephones and the water glasses in the bathroom. He also suggests that guests look into getting extra pillow cases.

“Let’s just assume the worst,” said Greenberg. “So when you go to the hotel, call downstairs, ask to speak to housekeeping and ask them to send two more pillowcases up … It’s all about the conversation. This is not something you do online.”

Those steps can help ensure the next time you stay in a hotel you can be safe as possible. Furthermore, Greenberg cautions travelers that Airbnb’s should be booked only for long-term stays at the moment with guests cleaning the private rental themselves to ensure proper hygiene.

CORONAVIRUS: NY Health Dept. | NY Call 1-(888)-364-3065 | NYC Health Dept. | NYC Call 311, Text COVID to 692692 | NJ COVID-19 Info Hub | NJ Call 1-(800)-222-1222 or 211, Text NJCOVID to 898211 | CT Health Dept. | CT Call 211 | Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


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