When is a hotel bargain not such a bargain? When your room is filthy, for sure.
TripAdvisor has released its list of the dirtiest hotels in the United States and the rest of the world per its visitors’ reports. The reviews make entertaining reading, for example: “Do not stay in this decrepit facility unless you’re homeless! Even then, I would try to find a refrigerator box first.”
I believe TripAdvisor’s ratings are valuable, but I always approach these lists with the awareness that they are not compiled methodically and scientifically. The visitors who submit reviews are self-selected, and there is a potential for manipulation.
While it seems very unlikely that any hotel would appear on the dirtiest hotel list unless it had a serious problem with cleanliness, it’s interesting to note that a hotel that topped the U.S. list for three of the four previous years, the Hotel Carter in New York, is no longer in the top ten at all. The manager told USA Today‘s Laura Bly that the hotel had made minor renovations and particular efforts to eradicate bedbugs.
You can see among reviews of the Hotel Carter on the TripAdvisor site that many recent postings give it three or even four stars out of five while many others still give it the lowest rating possible — one star. This disparity makes it very difficult to evaluate the hotel, and I’d certainly look for a stronger consensus before I trusted in a significant improvement to the property.