Hotel-Cleaning one’s Hotel room

This Halacha is an excerpt from our Sefer


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Does one who is staying at a hotel for Pesach have to clean and check the room for Chametz?[1]

Received access to room prior to the night of the 14th: If one received the keys for the room prior to nightfall of the 14th, then he is obligated to clean and check the room for Chametz with a blessing on the night of the 14th following all the Bedika laws. This applies even if the renter himself never ate Chametz in the room.[2]

Received access to room after the beginning of the night of the 14th: If one only received the keys to the room after nightfall of the 14th, as is common with those who arrive to the hotel on Erev Pesach, then if the hotel is owned by a Jew, it is the Hotel’s responsibility to clean and check the rooms for Pesach in accordance to all the Bedika laws.[3] [In such a case, if a guest ate Chametz in his room after the hotel search was done, then if one was not careful with the Chametz, the search must be redone.[4]] If, however, the hotel is owned by a gentile, then one must immediately clean and check the hotel room for Chametz upon his arrival, whether one arrived on Erev Pesach or on Chol Hamoed. A blessing is to be said before the Bedika and all the common Bedika laws apply. The same applies if the Jewish owner was negligent and for whatever reason did not clean and check the room for Chametz.

If one is leaving the hotel on the 14th?[5] If one stayed in a hotel prior to Pesach, and will be leaving on Erev Pesach, then he is obligated to check for Chametz on the night of the 14th. Nevertheless [if one is checking out of the hotel room prior to the 6th hour on Erev Pesach] a blessing is not to be recited.[6] [If, however, one will be checking out of the hotel room after the 6th hour of the day, then a blessing is to be said before the search.[7]] The above applies whether the hotel is owned by a Jew or gentile.

May one rent a home or hotel room which was not cleaned for Chametz if he will arrive in middle of Pesach?[8]

It is permitted to rent a home or hotel room in the middle of Pesach even if it was not cleaned from Chametz.[9] However, one is to declare upon making the acquisition of the rental that he does not intend to acquire any Chametz that is there.[10] Immediately upon arrival to the home or hotel room, he must perform Bedikas Chametz to the room.[11] Nevertheless, a blessing is not to be recited.[12] If the room was rented from before Pesach, then if he was already given access to the room from before Pesach, then he must arrange for the room to be cleaned beforehand, as stated here and in Halacha 12C.

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[1] See Piskeiy Teshuvos 437:1

[2] As the Chametz in the room automatically becomes acquired to the guest upon him making an acquisition of the rental, and receiving the keys. [Admur 437:1]

[3] The hotel rooms may be checked either on the night of the 14th, or on a previous night, so long as no one else will be staying in those rooms until the arrival of the guests on Erev Pesach.

[4] Vetzaruch Iyun if the search must be redone with a blessing.

[5] P”M 436 M”Z 7; Piskeiy Teshuvos 437:1

[6] Implication of P”M ibid; Piskeiy Teshuvos ibid; Vetzaruch Iyun as on the one hand we learn from 437:1-2 that the obligation falls onto whoever owns the place on the night of the 14th. On the other hand, we learn in 437:20-21 that one does not need to check the home of a gentile.

[7] Pashut, as he has a Biblical obligation not to own Chametz once that time arrives! One must conclude that the P”M ibid only referred to a case that the person was leaving the gentile’s home before the 6th hour of the day.

[8] See Piskeiy Teshuvos 437:1; Siddur Pesach Kihilchaso 12:8

[9] See Admur 448:3; 450:21 in parentheses that his property does not acquire him the Chametz that is there if it is against his will; See Chapter 2 Halacha 10 regarding a gentile who brought Chametz into one’s home!

[10] Admur 448:4 that it is proper to be stringent to explicitly tell the gentile that one does not want one’s property to acquire the gentile’s Chametz for him.

[11] Pashut, as although the Chametz is not his we suspect he may come to eat the Chametz. One can choose to flush the Chametz down the toilet, or simply throw it out into a public area without using one’s hands. See Chapter 2 Halacha 10!

A Jewish owned hotel: If the hotel is owned by an observant Jew then one is to verify with the owner if the room was already cleaned from Chametz, and if so then he is not required to clean/check it upon arrival. If he is unable to verify this matter, then if the owner is a G-d fearing Jew, he may rely on the Chazaka that he probably cleaned the room from Chametz, as required. See E!

[12] Pashut, as it is not his Chametz and he does not have a command to destroy it. This is unlike Piskeiy Teshuvos ibid who writes a blessing is to be said.

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