Hotels

Looking for a clean hotel? Don't just trust ratings

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When you’re booking your next hotel stay, you may want to look past the star ratings and have a gander at the cost and reviews. You may find some surprises.

The Amerisleep mattress company surveyed 8,000  publicly available inspection reports from over 3,400 hotels, motels and inns in Florida in 2015 and 2016, then compared the hotels’ star ratings with their average nightly room rates and TripAdvisor ratings.

Some of their findings were astonishing.

One of their discoveries was that 2-star hotels had the most issues with clean bedding and linen — but they had just one violation more than 5-star hotels. If you’re a fan of clean sheets, the 4-star lodgings had three times fewer violations than the 5-stars.

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But when you disregard the stars and go only by price, things become more predictable: The more you pay, the cleaner the bedding. Hotels that charged less than $100 a night had six times as many clean-bedding violations as hotels that charged $500 or more.

And contrary to what some may think, reviews matter. Amerisleep found that as TripAdvisor ratings went up, incidents of violations went down.

“According to the ratings and reviews on hotelscombined.com, typically properties that are 4-5 stars receive an 8-9.5 out of 10 for cleanliness, and properties with 3 stars or less receive 6-8 out of 10,” said Chris Rivett, Hotels Combined’s travel expert.

“This shows that while hotels across the board meet their guests’ expectations when it comes to cleanliness, hotels with high star ratings are consistently delivering high levels of service to live up to the expectation of their guests who are paying for a premium experience.”

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Here are a few other items guaranteed to bug germophobes:

--When Travel Math and air-quality experts EmLab P&K analyzed 36 samples taken from nine different hotels in the 3-star to 5-star range, they found that the average hotel room is dirtier than a typical home, airplane or school. 

-A study conducted by the hotel review site Oyster found that hotel coffee mugs, water glasses, light switches and remote controls were hotbeds for bacteria such as E.coli.

-- As reported by Telegraph Travel, bathrooms are the cleanest places in a hotel room — much cleaner than mattresses and duvet covers — because they are the most thoroughly cleaned by hotel staff.

--Finally, according to Amerisleep, 4- and 5-star hotels do a good job of keeping vermin in check, but they’re not as good as they should be at keeping dishes clean for room service.

Rebekah Sager is a writer and editor for FoxNews.com. She can be reached at rebekah.sager@foxnews.com. Follow her on Twitter @rebekah_sager.