Why Hotel Maids are So Aggressive to Clean Your Room

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Ever wonder why hotel maids appear to be so aggressive wanting to clean your hotel room during your stay? On a recent stay at a NYC hotel, I left the do not disturb sign on my door, and was literally ran down by the maid asking if she could clean my room and why I didn’t want the room serviced.

I explained I was just there for a few nights and didn’t need service. She asked if she could bring extra towels or even make the bed. I finally obliged and let her service it, but it made me wonder why she was so aggressive wanting to clean the room.

It turns out that in NYC and other cities as well, the maids or room attendants, have what is called a Leave Early Program. Let’s say they’re assigned to clean 12 rooms for the day. If they finish all their rooms, they can leave 2 hours early and still get paid for the whole day. So if your room is one of the rooms they are supposed to clean and you have a DND sign on it, they won’t be able to finish their quota and thereby not able to leave early.

You might think that they have other rooms they can clean, but most hotels staff every room to be cleaned, so they don’t have extra rooms they swap for, if their assigned ones have do not disturb signs.

Some hotels that offer Make a Green Choice, where you can earn bonus points for declining housekeeping, guests let the hotel know at check-in if they want to participate, so these rooms aren’t assigned to be cleaned for the day.

Do you decline housekeeping service during your stay?  Have you ever experienced an aggressive maid trying to clean your room after saying you didn’t need any service?

Editorial Note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or suggestions expressed on this site are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed.

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  1. This makes total sense. When I was in Chicago on Thursday night, the maid knocked at 8am. When I answered, she said that she thought I had already checked out. And then she came back at 11:30am. Which is totally strange because I had received a late check-out for 1pm.

  2. Recently near Cleveland, I asked for and was given a 4pm late checkout as a platinum member. Because I had a late night and early morning, I decided to take a nap around 9. The maid pounding on the door scared me out of a deep sleep. Even tough I yelled that I was coming she was already letting herself in by the time I got there. Luckily, I had the extra bar on, because the Do not disturb sign and the extra “privacy” lock did nothing to stop her. Her explanation was that her list didn’t have my laser tree check out, but she couldn’t say why she ignored the sign. When I complained at the front desk, after questioning me on how I got my late check out, they apologized about the sign being ignored, but said the privacy locks don’t stop the maid keys. They couldn’t tell me why they were even there then. They simply said that was what the metal bar that only lets the door open a few inches is for. Really?

  3. At the H.I. in Aruba I told the maid I didn’t need the room cleaned. She asked if she could use my phone to confirm it was done. I agreed because she said after cleaning a room they call from that room phone to indicate it is done, and get paid by the number of rooms cleaned.

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