If you stay in a hotel, even once in a while, you have to appreciate the fact that someone else is cleaning up after you. It certainly is one of the high points of this mom's hotel experience. Still, I have to admit, I haven't always tipped the housekeeping staff, especially if I've only stayed one night. But after reading this story, I plan to start. Consider it an early resolution.
It seems all those new, fantastically fluffy mattresses hotels are switching to in order to woo us and our aching backs have created an unintended problem; bad backs for the housekeeping staff. The overstuffed mattresses, monster duvets and myriad pillows are creating havoc for the staff. While the amount and weight of the bedding has changed dramatically since the so-called bed wars began, there has no been change in the housekeeper's workload, The San Francisco Chronicle reports.
And if you're wondering what all this has to do with you, consider this: The Chronicle notes that at the Oakland Marriott, each housekeeper must clean 16 rooms per day, which averages out to about 26 beds. Each bed takes almost 15 minutes to make, leaving just 15 minutes or so for everything else in your room to be cleaned. It doesn't take a great leap to surmise that other areas, such as bathrooms, may suffer as a result. I hope hotels will recognize this, and adjust workloads accordingly, but I plan to leave a tip every time so housekeeping knows I understand how hard they work to keep me coming back. It certainly can't hurt if you need more towels, too.
And if you're curious, USA TODAY
did a feature earlier this year where a reporter played Maid for a Day, and followed the real thing around during the housekeeper's shift. What you don't know about what they go through … it's probably a lot.
About the Auhtor:
Megg Mueller Schulte is an assistant travel editor at USATODAY.com. Her column runs every Wednesday.