Things we want: reasonable hotel laundry prices

By John Walton, June 7 2012
Things we want: reasonable hotel laundry prices

How many times has this happened to you: you've packed enough for your business trip, with a couple of spare changes of clothes as backup, but suddenly you're being sent off to another city for a surprise set of meetings.

Being a no-nonsense type, you don't need or want the full hotel laundry service, with your socks tied up with little bows and everything presented in tissue paper or plastic wrap. You just want stuff washed and dried so you can pack it away in your suitcase to get to your next destination.

You probably (and we certainly) resent paying those extortionately high laundry prices: $5 -- or more! -- for a pair of socks or a t-shirt, when you need four days' changes of clothes washed? Nobody wants to try getting that past accounting these days.

But at the same time, you don't want (or don't have the time) to have to find a laundromat and sit there for an hour or more while your stuff is washed.

No, hotels need to offer reasonably priced "wash and dry" laundry. A hotel laundry bag full, chucked in the washing machine and dryer, shouldn't cost the earth. We'd be prepared to pay $10 or even $20 for that, if it came back folded ready to be packed.

(Though we'd probably roll it first before putting it in the suitcase.)

The laundry situation is a big part of why we find apartment hotels so convenient: with a washer and dryer in your apartment, your clothes are done in the time that it takes to sort yourself out some dinner and watch a bit of TV.

Even guest laundry rooms, seen much more often in mid-range hotels than anywhere at the higher end, are a reasonable option. (Top tip: if you're seriously busy, see if there's a junior staffer at the hotel who's happy to do your laundry while you're in meetings all day, in exchange for $20.)

What's the worst hotel laundry rort you've encountered? Where's the best business class hotel for practical things like getting your washing done?

Or have you found a decent washing service that does hotel pickups? Give praise where praise is due -- or name and shame! -- in a comment below.

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John Walton

Aviation journalist and travel columnist John took his first long-haul flight when he was eight weeks old and hasn't looked back since. Well, except when facing rearwards in business class.

10 Mar 2011

Total posts 527

Completely agree.. But truth be told, if I need to extend a work trip and need laundry done then I'll get it done regardless of the price because work is paying!

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

02 Aug 2011

Total posts 42

Complete agree, in my previous job I use to alawys get extra days tacked onto the end of a trip, and it was an absolute pain trying to juggle dirty and clean clothes.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

10 May 2012

Total posts 137

John, with the good value of the Aussie $, I find that business trips overseas to UK/US are a good idea to simply throw away old socks, t-shirts and undies as I go along and buy new ones to bring home.  It's far cheaper than laundry in the hotel and I end up with new stuff for the next 3-6 months.

03 Jan 2011

Total posts 666

I quite agree! Having just come back from the US, I replaced all my socks, t-shirts and dress shirts in New York.

I also find that since Americans don't usually iron, US clothes tend to wrinkle significantly less too -- fresh out of the dryer and much less ironing required.

03 Oct 2011

Total posts 32

As someone who never checks bags, laundry is a big deal on any trip over 5 days, business or personal.

I keep my own list of services for places I tend to visit.  My favorite: services that charge by weight or bag, and pick up and drop-off.  Second best are services where you drop off and go back to pick up, but they still charge by the pound or kilogram or bag.

In Sydney, I love City Laundry.  Top-notch service.  

In Hong Kong, Snow White laundry is terrific, but I'd prefer less perfumey soap (still, a modest complaint compared to the excellent service and reasonable prices).  Also good is Sunshine, but you have to go there (easy to get to and from).

In Curaçao, No Bo is great and friendly.

In Dublin, Leeson.

03 Jan 2011

Total posts 666

Very useful recommendations, emailboy! Thanks for the suggestions.

20 Jul 2011

Total posts 73

I once paid £90 for 5 shirts, a few t-shirts and some socks and jocks in a very ordinary hotel in London.  An utter rort.

03 Jan 2011

Total posts 666

Bloody hell. I'd have bought a bottle of seriously good champagne and done the washing myself for those prices!

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