Reports of bed bug infestations are not uncommon – even in luxury resorts. Traveling is also the most common way to spread these critters. Whether it’s something as simple as your child’s slumber party at the neighbor’s, or a luxurious vacation at a 5 star hotel, it is important to take proper prevention precautions every time you travel.
Find a Safe Place for Luggage:
Placing your luggage on the floor or bed while traveling is one of the easiest ways to expose yourself to bed bugs. Even hotel furniture is a big no-no. So, if you can’t keep your luggage on the floor, bed or other furniture, where do you keep it? The best solution is a luggage rack. Not all hotels supply these, so investing in a portable luggage rack to travel with is a foolproof alternative. While it is not always 100% effective, it will be a significant help.
Seal Belongings in Plastic:
This can be a hassle (especially for the avid traveler) but it is so important in protecting yourself from bed bugs. Whether traveling by air, car or train, your luggage travels with other luggage – and who knows where it’s been! On the inside of your luggage, place all clothing inside a plastic bag that is tightly sealed. For extra protection, place your entire luggage carrier inside sealed plastic, as well.
Inspect, Inspect, Inspect:
When entering a hotel room the first thing you will want to do is check the space for bugs. Leave your bags outside until your inspection is complete. While bed bugs cannot always be seen, there are certain clues and signs that can suggest the presence of an infestation. Look for markings on the bed and sheets, which could be fecal stains. Bed bugs tend to roam within 10 feet of where people sleep, so continue your inspection to chairs, couches and other furnishings. Should you have any suspicions of bed bug activity, report it to the facility staff immediately.
Preparation is key when it comes to travel and bed bugs. Research the hotel/motel/resort you are staying at before booking, and make note of any reports of bed bugs. Just because a facility was reported to have bed bugs in the past doesn’t mean the problem still exists, but it doesn’t hurt to be familiar with the history. Along with prepping your luggage with sealed plastic, you may also consider bed bug proof items such as pillow encasements and luggage liners.
Post Travel Precautions:
Perhaps the steps you take after returning home are the most important. Instead of bringing your belongings inside the home, keep them outside while you thoroughly wash everything in hot water. High heat should be used for at least 30 minutes to kill any bugs or eggs.
Whew! That’s a lot of precaution. If you are sensing that bed bugs can turn into a huge problem – your senses are correct. Dealing with these pests can be quite frustrating. That is why prevention is so important. If bed bugs ever become a problem in your home, try not to worry too much. Aerex Pest Control has the resources and expertise to properly eradicate them from any premises. Just give us a call!