It’s not a matter of the cleaning tools being cheap, it’s that they have their traditional ways of doing things and they are really resistant to change. Piton View said her cleaners in St. Lucia are quite similar and also won’t use the vacuum cleaner.
Unless you find a cleaner here who has been doing it a long time and working in high end places who have been taught what is expected, you have to train them yourself.
I had a cleaner for 5 years, actually also she’s a neighbor, who was like gold. She was really thorough, and if she didn’t get around to something one day, she’d remember and tackle it the next time.
There’s some perception here that if it’s not visible, it doesn’t need to be cleaned, or they just don’t think of it. They’ll clean the fridge out nicely, clean the doors and the sides, but leave half an inch of dust on top. I had to show my current cleaning gal to clean under the kicks under the sink cabinets- she’d sweep and mop, but there would be dog hair and cobwebs hanging down from the top of the kick. One day she took everything out from under the kitchen sink and washed it all, washed the inside of the cupboard, and just put everything back without drying it- I opened the cupboard doors a few hours later to find it totally wet in there, and of course starting to smell funky and musty.
Last time she came (I just have her come for 4 hrs once every two weeks), I asked her to clean the 4 wooden chairs with cane seats, telling her to scrub the seats with a brush from the top and the bottom, as there was dust and dead bugs stuck in there. She did a good job on that, but it never occurred to her to wipe down the rest of the chair- the wood parts were still covered in dust.
And they’ll keep mopping the floors with the same pail of dirty black water, instead of changiing out the water, seeming to think if they dump half a bottle of cleaning product in, that makes the floors clean.
They love cleaning products, and there are multiple aisles of them in the grocery stores, most of them heavily perfumed. And they love to use bleach, but almost everyone I know has forbidden their cleaners from using it, because they somehow manage to splash it everywhere. Bleach spots on undersink curtains, bedspreads, colored towels.