To assist their housekeeping teams Travelodge have enlisted the help of RoboVac buddies to keep their hotels as clean as can be.

The 7,500 vacuum cleaners are custom made for the nine Edinburgh hotels as well as the other 570 all over the UK.

The staff at Travelodge have nearly 44,000 rooms to clean every day, and vacuum the distance from Edinburgh to New York every day, so the vacuum buddies will lighten the load by taking over one of the more strenuous tasks.

Travelodge teamed up with KILLIS Ltd a Sheffield based company which specialises in cleaning equipment and came up with an engineered solution for industrial cleaning in busy hotels.

The new RoboVac buddies are the result of nine months work producing five prototypes before this one. The machine is robust enough to deal with the work with an industrial booster battery, and a larger and lighter dust collector. The vacuum is greener and quieter than traditional machines and use only 60 watts of power rather than the 1200 watts a traditional corded hoover uses. The machine is bagless making it more environmentally friendly.

Each housekeeping team member will have a RoboVac assigned to them and it will work alongside the housekeeper who will set to on the other tasks to comprehensively clean the room and bathroom. The RoboVac cleans under beds and along hallways and other public spaces.

At the end of the shift the buddies are tucked into their bunk beds for R&R (Recharge and Rest).

Craig Bonnar, Travelodge, Chief Executive said: “We are very excited to kick start 2022 by revolutionising the hospitality sector and supporting our  housekeeping teams with the roll-out of the UK’s first hotel RoboVac Buddy  recruitment programme. Housekeeping is the most important and physically demanding job at Travelodge and we are always looking for low cost and innovative ways to support our colleagues. Automating vacuuming with the introduction of the Travelodge RoboVac Buddies is a fun, win-win solution which helps us to drive a greener, cleaner and more efficient room clean. The army of Travelodge RoboVac Buddies have settled in really well and are a massive hit with our hotel teams and customers.”   

Lira Namoni, Travelodge RoboVac Buddy Trainer said: “On behalf of my colleagues across all of the UK Travelodge hotels, we are thrilled to welcome our new RoboVac Buddies. They are just incredible and made such a significant difference to housekeeping duties. They have now all completed their induction training and passed their probation and are just raring to get to work. 

“There have been a couple of casualties during training, a RoboVac Buddy at Gatwick Airport Travelodge took a wrong turn and was found in Spain.

“Another RoboVac Buddy at Cambridge Orchard Park Travelodge had a technical glitch during its reception cleaning shift and bolted out of the hotel onto the streets.  The hotel team were distraught and put a SOR (Save Our RoboVac) message out on social media channels for its safe return.  Luckily the RoboVac Buddy was rescued and after a good reboot and charge it is back on duty.”         

Travelodge has around 1,000 RoboVacs on standby in a secret base so that they can be deployed to a Travelodge hotel in case of an emergency. 

KILLIS Ltd who designed and built the RoboVac Buddy with Travelodge have also built a bespoke surgery at their headquarters to provide a full health service for the Travelodge RoboVac Buddies.      

Tibor Killi, KILLIS Ltd, Managing Director, said: “We are delighted to work with Travelodge and create the UK’s first hospitality spec RoboVac. This is the largest cleaning equipment mobilisation in our company’s history and it has been an honour to be making history with Travelodge within the hospitality world.” 

“The Travelodge RoboVac Buddies are going to revolutionise the company’s housekeeping teams working lives and will be a great addition to the Travelodge hotel teams. It has been a pleasure working with an innovative company who puts its people and customers at the heart of its business, and we look forward to the next challenge Travelodge gives us.”