While it’s always magical to spend time at Walt Disney World, getting sick can put a real damper on the fun. To protect you and your traveling entourage against germs like norovirus (stomach flu) and others, it’s time to up your travel sanitation routine. After all, an ounce of prevention…
Before you get to your hotel
Carry disinfectant wipes in your carry-on. Starting in your plane seat, wipe down the arm rest, recliner button, tray, magazine pocket, air controllers, touch screen, and headrest.
When you arrive at your hotel room
Here’s a suggested routine you can follow:
First, if it is an option, open the window or sliding door to air out the room. Germs can linger in the air for hours and this is a great way to help the air change over so it’s fresher and cleaner.
As the room airs out, wipe down:
- Doorknobs: Your room door, closet, bathroom (and sliding glass door if any)
- Switches: Wall light switches and lamp switches
- Pulls: Curtains, bureau drawers, bedstand drawers
- Appliances: Clock, coffee pot buttons, and safe handle and keypad. The remote control deserves a special mention – after you wipe it, put it in a plastic sandwich or quart size bag. It works just fine and you won’t have to touch it directly. Those little cracks and crevices are petri dishes!
- Surfaces: Nightstands, desk and hard surface chair arm rests
Next, head into the bathroom and wipe down these things (you already did the doorknob):
- All hard surfaces you’ll set your toiletries on
- Sink and shower handles
- Toilet seat, lid, and handle
A couple more suggestions
Before using any provided glasses or cups (if they’re not the disposable kind), run them under hot water for a minute or two.
Put suitcases on the luggage rack, not the bed. Those little wheels have been everywhere and touched who-knows-what in the airport, airplane, sidewalk, trunk, etc. But if you must use the bed, you can wipe off the suitcase and wheels first.
Most likely the decorative bedspread or decorative pillows on the bed aren’t washed or changed between stays (and who knows what the previous residents did on the bedspread?). Take them off and sleep with the clean sheets, pillows and a blanket.
We wear slippers or socks in our room, especially if it’s carpeted. ’Nuff said.
(When we travel, we bring along a small portable phone charger/UV sanitizer to disinfect our phones, any credit cards we used in transit, cash and coins we received during the day, etc. We just throw them in at night and we’re good to go.)
Ready to head out?
Carry hand sanitizer with you. If you’re as finicky as we are, use it after riding an attraction because who knows who used the grab bar before you. It’s also easier to use hand sanitizer with little ones who are less likely to wash their hands well and more likely to touch their faces often.
This may sound like a lot of work, but it doesn’t take much time, really – and it sure takes up a lot less vacation time than getting sick! It makes “cents,” too; if you calculate how many dollars per day your trip cost, missing out on one day’s fun can be costly…
So wash your hands and be well!
Have any other tips? Let us know in the comments.