How to Avoid Bed Bugs in Hotels
Bed Bugs: NOT the best souvenir!
I am afraid of thousands of things in the horrifying, strange world of ours. Bed bugs are among them. For this reason, I am particularly keen on keeping them out of my personal fortress of solitude.
Alas, one's desires and reality don't always go hand in hand, and a couple years back, I had to deal with a bed bug infestation. The one good thing that came out of it was that I got some great tips from an exterminator on avoiding future infestations. The exterminator's advice was so dang useful, I thought I would share it with you, too!
As it happens, travel and infested hotels are the major culprits behind the growth in bed bug problems. Bed bugs spread as folks bring them back from vacations and business travel. Don't want to bring bed bugs back from your travels? Follow these tips!
How to Avoid Bring Bed Bugs in Hotels Home
To protect your home from a bed bug infestation, the best thing you can do is travel responsibly and do everything you can do to avoid bringing these blood sucking pests home. To do this, follow these steps:
- Research ahead of time: check online reviews of any hotel you're staying in to make sure it has not dealt with any recent infestations. If bed bugs appear to be a problem, STAY IN ANOTHER HOTEL!
- Check your room: Before settling in, check your room for bed bugs (pull the sheets back from your mattress on one corner of the bed and check for bed bugs and blood spots). If you find something, leave that hotel, and if you don't have that luxury of choice, at least demand to stay in another (clean) room.
- Don't touch the bed: Don't sit on your bed or put any of your belongings on the bed to reduce any chance of cross-contamination.
- Put your suitcase and baggage away from the bed and off the floor: Most hotel rooms come with suitcase stands. Use those.
- Sleep in the nude / isolate your pajamas: If you don't like sleeping in your birthday suit, make sure that you stow any bedclothes in a sealed plastic bag before mixing them with your luggage, and wash and dry (in a drier) them immediately after returning home. This will kill any stow-away bed bugs that might have come home with you.
Better Safe than Sorry!
These simple steps may seem like a bit of a hassle, but they're chump change when compared to the trouble you would have to go through if you have a bed bug infestation in your own home (in addition to washing and drying- or dry cleaning- all of your clothes, you'll have to shell out for expensive treatments, isolate certain rooms, and maybe even dispose of some of your furniture).
I say play it safe and rest easy knowing you're significantly reducing any risk of bringing these annoying bugs home with you!