How to Sanitize a Hotel Room Against Coronavirus (and Other Nasty Germs)

Andra Watkins
4 min readMar 3, 2020

For many Americans, employment obligations do not cease because of a possible pandemic called coronavirus. Without paid sick leave, millions of Americans show up at the office, meet clients in public, and travel to keep jobs and pay bills.

Take me for example. I’m working from an Atlanta-area hotel room this week. I’m staying adjacent to Hartsfield Jackson International Airport, where thousands stream through customs and into our country every day. While effective hygiene measures are always important in hotel rooms, we face an even higher bar with a novel virus circulating.

Most travelers cannot pack an arsenal of cleaning supplies in their carry-ons. Airlines allow sanitary wet wipes and alcohol-based gels to stay well on the plane. Those products can also be effective in the average hotel room.

Here’s how I sanitized my hotel room.

Purchase alcohol-based wet wipes. I opened my pack before I walked into the room. I wiped the exterior door knob, the edge of the door, the interior door knob and lock mechanism, and the bolt latch.

Wipe down switches and outlets. I turned on the light with the cloth I used to open the door. From there, I walked through the space and scrubbed switches and outlets I planned to use.

Scour the night tables. Bedside lamp switches are usually manual. I rubbed down the switches, the wooden tabletop, the telephone and the alarm clock (even though I did not plan to use the latter two.)

Scrub sinks and countertops. My room is equipped with both wet bar and bathroom sink. I wiped all metal on both faucets completely, being careful to scrub the undersides of the handles. I also wiped down cabinet handles…

Andra Watkins

NYT bestselling author NOT WITHOUT MY FATHER | speaker | dreamer | risk-taker | travel whore | turn I wish I had into I’m glad I did