Housekeeping Terminology

Housekeeping Terminology

Different Types of Housekeeping term used in Hotel

Housekeeping is very important department in Hotel, if you want to become best Hotelier so Housekeeping terminology is very useful. It should be you work in Front Office or any other departmentin Hotel.


Banquet Function Prospectus (BFP) – is document gives prior intimation of various conferences and parties to be held in the hotel and chalks out the responsibilities of all support documents, including housekeeping, are expected to take on for the same.

Bedding – Collective term for all articles on a bed.

Bidet – These are sanitary fixtures meant for the thorough washing of the genitals and anus; but these are now increasingly being used as footbaths.

Briefing – Briefing session is held for all the employees at the beginning of a work shift, usually presided over by the HOD to facilitate two-way communication between the management and the staff.


BUP “Brush Up” – Very light servicing given to a room that has been given a full service earlier in the day, when it was occupied, but which is now vacated.


Castors – These are wheels fixed at the base or to the legs of furniture and equipment to make them mobile.

Check-out/vacated/departure room(CO or C/O) – The guest has settled his/her account, returned the room keys, and left the hotel.

Complimentary Room (Comp.) – The room is occupied but the guest is not to be charged for its use.

Coverlets – Bed spread that just covers the top of the dust ruffle. It does not reach down to the floor.



Daily Routine – The series of administrative and work-related events that occur between 6.30 a.m. and mid-night form the routine for a housekeeping department in the guestroom area and public areas of a hotel.

Daily-work report – Document prepared by the deputy housekeeper, assigning work to supervisors and GRAs based on the occupancy of the hotel.

Debriefing – Debriefing session or meeting is held at the end of a shift by the managerial staff to discuss problems, share ideas, and evolve solutions.

Departure Room – Room from which the guest has checked out or is going to check out shortly.

Did Not Check out (DNCO) – The guestroom made arrangements to settle his/her account but has left without informing the frontoffice.

Do not disturb (DND) – The guest has requested not to be disturbed.


Double-lock room (DL) – Room which has been double locked. No other key can open the room except the grandmaster key or the emergency key.

Down – Soft, fluffy feathers found underneath the contour feathers of adult birds, especially that of ducks and swans as used for stuffing pillow, cushions, and quilts.

Due-out room –The room is expected to become vacant after the following day’s checkout-time.

Dust Ruffle – Pleated, decorative, floor-length skirting of fabric that extends around the sides and foot of the bed.

Duvets – Quilts filled with down feathers or synthetic fibres.They are sometimes referred to as comforters.


Eider Down – The soft, fluffy feathers beneath the contour feathers of adult eider ducks, used for stuffing pillows, cushions, or quilts; also the name given to quilts made from these feathers.

Emergency key – A key that can open all the guestrooms of the hotel even if they are double-locked.



Fixtures – Hardware items present in guestrooms that cannot be moved or are difficult to move since they are fixed in position. E.g, wash basins and WCs.

Floor master keys – Floor master keys open all guestrooms on a particular floor that are not double locked.


Guest amenities – All the luxury items that a hotel gives away at no extra costs.

For more information about guest amenities and their placement you can read this article Placement of Guest supplies and Hotel Amenities

Guest Essentials – Items that are essential to the guestroom and are not used up or expected to be taken away by guests

Guest Expendables – Those guest supplies that guests are expected to use up or take away when leaving the property.

Guest Supplies – All items that are conducive to the guest’s increased material comfort and convenience.

They are further sub divided as guest amenities, guest essentials, guest expendables, and guest loan items.


Grand-Master key – This key opens all guestrooms and often all housekeeping storage rooms.


It can also double-lock a room if access to it has to denied.

This key can be used in emergency situations. It is itself kept under lock-and-key at the front desk of hotels.

Guest Loan items – These are guest supplies not normally found in a guestroom, but available upon request. E.g, hair dryers, ironing boards etc.


Housekeeping Control Desk – The nerve centre of the entire housekeeping department for dissemination of information and communication to and from the department.

Sometimes referred to as housekeeping central.

Housekeeping Log Book – An important register in the housekeeping department, it is here that instructions and messages for the staff of the next shift are written by the employees on the current shift.

Housekeeping Room Status report – Report generated by the housekeeping department that indicates the current housekeeping status of each guestroom, based on a physical check.



Kapok – It is the smooth, light, and lustrous fibre obtained from the seeds of the silk-cotton tree. It is used as a filling for cushions, pillows, and quilts.


Linen Chute – Passage in the form of a tunnel for sending soiled linen down from the floor pantries on all floors to a central place near the laundry, from where it can be collected by the laundry staff.


Night Spread – Distinctly woven sheet used to cover and protect the blanket. It is now more often called a ‘third sheet’.Other names for the night spread are ‘crinkle sheet’ and ‘snooze sheet’.

No luggage/No baggage (NL or NB) – The guest is staying in the room but is without luggage.


Occupancy Report – Also called a night report, this document is prepared each night by the front-desk attendant indicates the rooms occupied that night and ones that are to become ‘checkouts’ the following day.

Occupied Room (O or OCC) – Guest is currently registered to the room.

On-change room (O/C) – Room in need of housekeeping services before it can be registered to an arriving guest.

Out-of-order room (OOO) – The room cannot be assigned to a guest. It may need maintenance work to be done, refurbishing, or extensive cleaning.

Room Assignment sheets – The room assignment sheet indicates the rooms that the particular GRA has to service, giving their status as indicated in the daily work report.

Room Status Discrepancy – A situation in which the housekeeping department’s description of a room’s status differs from the room status information at the front-desk.


Scanty Baggage (SB) – The guest with a very light luggage.

Second Service – A chargeable servicing/cleaning of the room provided on the special request of a guest after the guestroom has already been serviced as per the day’s schedule.

Section master/sub-master key – This key opens all rooms in one work-section of a hotel. A supervisor may be issued more than one key of this type as he or she may be required to inspect the work of more than one GRA.

Shoe Mitt – Flannel cloths, usually in the shape of mitten, kept in hotel rooms as guest supplies for cleaning shoes. Nowadays instead of flannel, rice-paper tissues are used.

Sleep-out room – A guest is registered to the room, but the bed has not been used yet.

Stayover Room (S/O) – The guestroom which is not checking-out today and will occupy the room for at least one more night.

Supply keys – These keys are used within the servicing sector of the hotel by the supervisory-level staff to ensure that stocks and equipment are safely stored away when not in use. Store keys, office keys, and linen room keys are examples of such keys.

Swag – Piece of drapery hung to hide the curtain heading and very often completed with a cascade.


Tent cards – Hotel publicity cards in the shape of tents, placed in guestrooms.

Ticking – Strong, sturdy cloth used to cover mattresses, pillows, and upholstery; a cover made of this.

Turn-down Service – Special service provided by the housekeeping department in which a room attendant enters the guestroom early in the evening to re-stock supplies, tidy the room, and turn down the covers on the bed.


Under-repair (UR) – The guestroom is not to be assigned to any guest as repair work is being carried out.

Upholstery – Textiles used for furniture décor.


Vacant-and-ready (V/R) –

The room has been cleaned, inspected, and is ready for an arriving room.

Vacant Room (V) – status of a room in which no guest has slept the previous night and which is not yet occupied.


Work-order form/Maintenance Slip – work-order form/slip is made out by the housekeeping department when any scheduled maintenance work is to be carried out in guestrooms or public areas.

This form/slip is sent to the maintenance department to request them to undertake the repair as soon as possible.


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