Bed bug infestations may seem like the stuff nightmares are made of, and oftentimes, very few homeowners really believe their home is going to get taken over by these pests. However, if you’re an avid traveler who stays in hotels often, there’s no way to guarantee that you won’t accidentally take home a stowaway bed bug or two in your luggage.

Bed bugs are notoriously hard to eradicate and cause painful, itchy red welts all over your body where you’ve been bitten. Due to the fact that bed bugs also live in small colonies, anxiety and fear, along with paranoia, are common after their initial sighting. After all, where there’s one, there’s a good chance there’s more!

What Do Bed Bugs Look Like?

The wingless species of bed bugs are red-brown in terms of coloring and may be approximately 7mm in length. Usually, their size and shape are comparable to apple seeds. Even if you don’t actually spot the bugs themselves, you may start to notice simple signs of their existence. For example, they often leave behind their waste that resembles pepper flakes, translucent mini eggs or, in some instances, baby bed bugs.

How To Travel To Avoid An Infestation

As most bed bugs are picked up by traveling, it’s crucial to practice good sanitation and packing. First and foremost, bed bugs like to hide in folds and seams, which is why hard-shelled luggage is a good way to prevent them. For bed bug travel protection make sure you pack all of your clothes and toiletries into categorized resealable plastic bags before placing them in your suitcase. Though you can’t completely eliminate the possibility of picking up a bed bug or two, these extra steps can make your belongings less desirable to them.

Perform A Hotel Inspection

Bed bugs are named as such because their favorite hiding places are beds! They love the dark crevices, folds, cracks, and ruffles that often make them imperceptible to the average weary traveler. Before plunking down on your hotel mattress, perform a fairly thorough inspection of the bed. Pull back the covers and pillows, and use a flashlight to check for signs of an infestation. Most importantly, check the folds and crevices of your mattress as you simply never know!

Contrary to their name, however, bed bugs aren’t just prone to surviving in beds. In fact, they can live behind picture frames, on nightstands, and anywhere where there’s upholstery in a room. During your initial inspection, also check the accents and accessories near the bed for a potential infestation. 

How To React To Bed Bugs In A Hotel

The moment you spot bed bug activity in your hotel room, make sure you alert management right away and ask to change rooms. Make it a point to ask for a room as far away as possible from your current location. One room over is not adequate enough to guarantee your safety from these pesky creatures! The real downside to spotting bed bugs is that they can easily travel from room to room by going through walls, hiding in a housekeeping cart or using the luggage of subsequent guests. It is crucial that hotel management takes care of the issue and takes your concerns seriously from the start!

Perform An At-Home Inspection

When you arrive home, don’t go into your house just yet! Rather, perform a very thorough inspection of your luggage, either outdoors or in your garage, to look for signs that you may have tracked a bed bug or two with you. A shower or a balcony are also reasonable spaces to perform your initial inspection if no other spaces are available.

It’s important to keep in mind that bed bugs have trouble crawling on smooth surfaces, and they’re notoriously easier to spot on lighter coloured backdrops. Ideally, you should steam clean or vacuum your luggage, but if not possible, perform a thorough inspection of all of the pockets and folds. Take your clothing and any textiles and place them into your dryer at high heat for 30 minutes. This will eradicate any remaining bed bugs that may lurk unseen. In the worst case you have to change the bed, you can buy these at Afterpay Bed Frame at affordable rates.

There’s always the possibility that a bed bug or two may slip through your initial inspection. If this is the case and you notice their presence in your home, call for professional help right away! A pest control service will have the ability to assess the situation and offer sound advice on how best to proceed.