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MtM Confessions – What Do You Do First In Your Hotel Room?

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Hotel Room Habits

We have quite a crew here at Miles to Memories.  We each possess different points and travel strengths, weaknesses, and opinions.  And none of us ever come up short on that last one.  We share a common love of staying in hotels.  But we all have our quirks.  For instance,  I probably enjoy the lower-rent stays more than the others.  I thought it would be fun for us each to share the first thing we do after we arrive in our hotel room.  Let us know your hotel room habits in the comments!

Note:  We’re all travel geeks.  Unsurprisingly, the first answer I received from several of the crew was, “I take photos and video.”  We’re removing that boring non-answer from below.

Hotel Room Habits – What We Do First


“I always look at the little room map on the back of the door to see how my room compares to the neighbors’!”

My Take:  I can’t say I’ve ever thought of doing this.  Shawn also mentioned that he’s interested in various room shapes.  No surprise, this answer comes from a seasoned, curious traveler.

Hotel Room Habits
A recent view from the Palazzo.


“I check out the view.”

My Take:  Never one to waste words, DDG predictably delivers here.  I come and go on this one.  If I’m upgraded for a specific view, I’ll confirm that upon entering.  Otherwise, I usually don’t check until later.


“I put the air conditioning on full blast.”

My Take:  I’ve loved cold hotel rooms since my childhood.  From a young age, I loved the exhilarating control of pressing a button to make cold air blow stronger on my face.  My hotel room habits haven’t changed much since.

Hotel Room Habits


“I go to the bathroom.”

My Take:  I thought Joe was initially joking here.  But no, no he was not.  Personally, I’m rarely in this position, because I don’t ever want to be at hotel check-in waiting to go to the bathroom.  I’m often prolonged at the front desk, where I have a tendency to ask pertinent, but potentially exhausting, questions.


“I check out the view, go to the bathroom, and turn down the thermostat.  I turn off the hotel room TV; I find the greeting annoying.”

My Take:  A true, if not quite original, first three, Ian’s habits are a combination of DDG, Benjy, and Joe.  Regardless, a trifecta of good company!  Ian’s fourth answer is definitely on-brand.

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“I unpack, always ensuring to hang my suit in the closet on a business trip.  I put my suitcase on a stand, off the ground and away from bedbugs.”

My Take:  In my experience, people who are into bed bugs take it very seriously.  There’s no “I briefly checked for bed bugs.”  I can’t say I fault them for that.

Hotel Room Habits


“I usually just walk through to see how clean the room is and how damaged the furniture is. No dirty rooms yet!  Then, I usually just wash my hands.”

My Take:  John seems to look at hotel rooms the way I look at a rental car before accepting it.  Give the room a good once-over to ensure nothing is unacceptable.  Washing hands is a strong secondary move.  I love to check out the bathroom products and clean off a bit of the day with a hand and face wash.  It’s a great way to rationalize going back out when you’re not quite ready for a shower!


“I check for a robe.  I’m a robe guy on vacation and I’ll wear literally just that and shorts most of the time I’m in there.”

My Take:  Ryan’s answer is bordering on TMI, but I can appreciate a good hotel room bathrobe.  And many others do, as well, judging from the increasingly large “don’t steal me” signs on the items.


There you have it, a predictably varied set of responses from the MtM crew.  I must say that everyone answered me pretty quickly.  There was little, if any, hesitation in their answers.  It’s no surprise we know our travel selves more than our true selves, maybe.  All lame jokes aside, it’s enlightening to discover the similar and different ways we travel.  Now over to you, dear reader – what’s the first thing you do after entering your hotel room?  Why?

Disclosure: Miles to Memories has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Miles to Memories and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers.

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Benjy Harmon
Benjy Harmon
Benjy focuses on the intersection of points, travel, and financial independence (FI). An experienced world traveler, husband, and father, he currently roams throughout the USA close to expense-free. Benjy enjoys helping others achieve their FI and travel goals.

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  1. Based on the article I may be your unicorn – Bedbugs got me into this hobby (finding one at a Fairfield Inn yielded points and Platinum Status and I never looked back), and I always do a quick check for them. I’ve learned I don’t have the expertise to discern between dust/dirt/stains and “signs of bedbugs”, so assuming the room passes my brief inspection I’ll release it from my mind in order to enjoy the rest of the stay.

  2. I’m a bit surprised that none of these seasoned travellers mentioned wiping down switches, handles, remotes and other contact surfaces with a disinfectant wipe. First thing we do when we remember to pack them!

    • Jim,
      I can understand why that’s a popular move. But I prefer to simply wash hands more frequently, instead.

  3. My husband and I always pour a glass of wine which we have brought along to celebrate the beginning of a new vacation or mini stay. Just a tradition we have

  4. One of the first things I do is flush the toilet. If that doesn’t work, I want to know BEFORE I use it.

  5. Thanks for this post. I thought only I had strange habits when first entering my hotel room. The first thing I do (and it’s just temporary for initial impact) is to turn on every single light and adjust any crooked lampshades, etc. Then if the window treatment are closed, I open them to enjoy the view. After I get settled in (and of course taking all the pics and videos – A Lot with every angle possible) I start turning off unnecessary lights.

    • PJJTraveler,
      Good point regarding lights. I often don’t notice lights not working until later in my stay. By then, I’m too lazy to call engineering.


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