We can’t deter chain hotels from serving sad scrambled eggs at continental breakfast or stop kids from running through the halls of the fifth floor, but we can alleviate some of the anguish. Most seasoned travelers have their tricks when they check into their hotel suite, but we pulled together 12 hacks that are a bit more creative to help make your next hotel suite feel a little more like home.
Use the Ironing Board as a Suitcase Stand
Your luggage most likely rolled around the airport, subway station, public restroom, or street, so think twice before throwing it on your hotel bed! We know bending over to retrieve your clothes from your suitcase can make your back sore if the bag’s placed on the floor, so keep it elevated by using the ironing board instead.
Boil Water in the Coffee Maker for Instant Meals
Nothing beats late-night ramen when you’re starving after your arrival and the restaurants in town have already closed for the night. The coffee maker in your room is great for boiling water, but be sure to rinse it thoroughly before using. Bon appetit!
Keep the Curtains Closed With a Hanger
Love the great view of the parking lot and the restaurant next door? You won't for long. That tiny crack about a newspaper’s width will make it difficult to fall back asleep at 3 a.m. when the orange street lights are aglow beneath the same restaurant sign. One solution is shutting the curtains with a hotel pen clip, but binder clips, hair clips, safety pins, and clothespins will also do the trick — if you can remember to bring them along. If you happen to forget them, however, the two clips on the hanger in your closet will work, too.
Fill the Sink or Trash Bin With Ice for a Makeshift Mini Fridge
Not all hotel rooms are created equal, and we’re always bummed when we find out there’s no mini fridge. Use the ice machine down the hall and fill the bathroom sink or small bathroom trash bin to keep drinks cool with minimal clean-up involved.
Prop the Door Open With a Hanger
Your hotel room door is oftentimes heavy, so avoid slammed fingers and loud bangs in the hall at night by using the hanger in the closet to hold the door open while you bring your luggage inside. Alternatively, the same hanger can also be used to secure the door from intruders if you loop the hanger around the doorknob and slide it under the latch.
Use the TV to Charge Your Phone
An argument with your travel buddy over who gets to charge their phone first is never a good way to start a relaxing stay. If there’s only one outlet near your partner’s bed and one conveniently placed behind the mini fridge in the hall, don't fight. Your television will work just fine. A USB port is right on the back. Just make sure you pack enough outlets to keep both of you happy.
Keep the Power On While You’re Out
We love a hotel that strives to conserve power in order to be more eco-friendly, but when you're trying to charge your electronics while you’re out, a feature that will only turn the lights on with a key card is a total nightmare. Many travelers have since discovered that any card will keep the lights on while you’re away.
Get Water From the Hotel Gym
Don’t be fooled. The mini water bottles neatly displayed on your nightstand are sometimes priced up to $13 each. Some countries don’t have potable drinking water, so if you don’t want to chance the tap water out of your sink, then score free water at the hotel gym instead.
Create Your Own Toothbrush Holder
Of course, you could just place your toothbrush in the complimentary plastic cup, but if you travel with a heavy brush, it could knock the cup over — letting the bristles brush against the counter. Avoid germs and create your own toothbrush holder using your room’s plastic cup by piercing a hole in the bottom and flipping it upside down, so your toothbrush can stand upright in the hole.
Use the Dry Cleaning Bag for Dirty Clothes
If you don’t use the hotel’s dry cleaning services, you can still put the dry cleaning bag to good use. Separate your dirty clothes with ease by using the bag to keep them stored securely. Just make sure your hotel doesn’t charge you if you remove it from the room.
Use a Wet Towel as a Humidifier
Feeling a little dry in your hotel room in Phoenix or Denver? We get it. Most hotel rooms don’t offer a humidifier, so another genius traveler decided to drape a soaked towel over the ironing board and place it in front of the air vent or heater. It’s brilliant and it really works!
Cover the Remote in a Shower Cap
You might not want to know this, but the remote in your hotel room isn’t cleaned very often. Use a plastic bag from the ice bucket to create the perfect cover so you can avoid touching it and still enjoy your favorite movie.