Traveling can be a stressful experience.
Making sure you get to your flight on time, listening out for any gate change announcements, or worrying about whether or not you'll get dragged from your flight.
Then, even if you get to your destination without a hitch, you've got to worry about what kind of accommodations you've been stuck with after you check into your hotel.
Each hotel has their own way of doing things. Some have little refrigerators standard, sometimes you've got to ask for them. Some offer more little perks than others like better toiletries, lotions, toothbrushes, while others offer better courtesy services that don't cost extra. The goal is to just try and make you feel like you're as comfortable as you would be in your own home (or even more), but that's hard to accomplish because, well, your own house has been specifically set up over a long period of time to suit your needs.
And although these hotel hacks won't magically transform whatever room or suite you're staying in into your own place, they can make your stay more enjoyable.
You may not be sure what you're looking at here, but some hotels require you to put your room key in a slot in order to supply electricity to the room. This saves hotels tons of money in power every year, so it makes sense for them to do so. However, as Twitter user @Oog discovered, some hotels let you put any card in the slot so you can let your laptop or phone charge, or blast the TV to get back at the neighbors who were loudly partying the night before, while you're out.
Be warned though, because some hotels are getting sly.
Some hotels you stay in have an aux cord built into the alarm clock, but not all of us are so fortunate to have such a wonderful little perk in our room. So what's a person to do if they wanna blast some music, but there are no speakers around? Simple: put your phone's speaker in your room's glass.
Obviously, just make sure there's no liquid in it.
If you're on a business meeting and your shoes are looking kind of shabby and want to spruce them up, then whip out the shoe polish you bring with you everywhere! Now in the off chance you're not a weirdo or a professional shoe polisher, and don't feel like buying a small tub of the stuff for a single use, you can use something your hotel offers for free to make those feet glisten.
Just rub a little bit of this stuff into your kicks and you'll look great while fighting sleep during whatever lame business conference your company sent you to.
Make yourself a grilled cheese using the hotel iron.
It's late. You've naturally partied hard in your hotel room because you're away from home and can get into all sorts of debauchery. Trouble is, the bars and restaurants don't stay open too late wherever you're at, and you're in the mood for some hot food, but the only thing open is a gas station convenience store. Not to worry, because you can whip yourself up a grilled cheese or panini using nothing but some tin foil, and the clothes iron in your hotel room. You can even use the ironing board as a little food station bar for your midnight munchies session.
Your hotel shower caps are actually useful for more than reenacting that scene from Mrs. Doubtfire.
Leftover take-out tends to go stale in your hotel room, and it's not like you're carrying around ziploc bags to keep them all fresh. You can't jam that entire pizza box into your miniature fridge, so looks like you should either throw it out, feed the birds, or you can pile the leftovers onto a plate provided by the hotel, and cover it with the shower cap.
Now some hotels have pillows that are way too puffy to be comfortable. Your neck doesn't have enough support so waking up to check out the remains of the Hard Rock hotel and casino, or wondering what the big deal behind the Grand Canyon is, won't be a pleasant experience.
Asking for more pillows may not help because hotels usually don't have different pillow varieties. But what you can do is ask for extra towels. You can roll them up and put them inside your pillowcases to give that extra bit of firmness your neck may crave.
Hotel ice buckets aren't just for keeping your drinks cold - the little sanitary plastic bags in them could be used for a variety of purposes.
You can throw wet bathing suits or dirty shoes, sandals, or flip flops into them to keep your room clean. If you're also weirded out by the amount of bodily fluid or excretions that could've made it's way to your room's remote control, then you can also create a hand pouch, like so.
Let's say you want to get your legs properly exfoliated before shaving them and going on the beach, only problem is the TSA thinks keeping shaving cream out of your carry-on is the highest form of keeping America safe. Not a problem, these things are your best friends.
Mix these with some moisturizer and give your legs a nice exfoliating scrub. Then, when your done shedding that dry skin, use hair conditioner as shaving cream and you've got some fine looking gams ready to soak up the sun.
You can also use your room's coffee machine to heat up water for pretty much anything. Ramen noodles, keeping a bottle warm, or anything boiled water comes in handy for.
Just because you're traveling light doesn't mean you need to live like it.