If your list of New Year’s resolutions include some traveling plans, you’re probably not alone. Getting out of town is on the do-list of many Americans. And while that vacation might be relaxing (and no doubt well deserved), what’s not relaxing is coming back home with a suitcase full of bed bugs. Or just a few. It doesn’t take many bed bugs to start an infestation that can keep you scratching for months.
This year, regardless of where your travel plans take you, try to avoid bringing these little souvenirs home. Don’t worry; we’ll help you know what to look for.
Avoiding Bed Bugs While Traveling
If you’ve ever had a problem with bed bugs, you likely already know the signs of an infestation. When you check into your hotel, carefully scour the room for any of these signs. These include dark marks on the mattress and especially in the seams, dark-colored shells or casings or of course – seeing a bed bug itself.
A common misconception is that bed bugs are always found in the bed. While this is a common place for them to hide, they actually are happy anywhere dark and relatively quiet. For instance, behind electrical outlets, baseboards and heavy curtains. Shake the curtains in your room and inspect the outlets for signs of bed bugs.
If you see no signs of bed bugs, still be cautious of where you stow your luggage. Keep it off the floor so that there is no easily accessible “bridge” for bed bugs to cross. Be sure you keep your luggage off the carpet while you’re inspecting the room as well – a tiled bathroom is a good place to keep it.
If you see signs of bed bugs, or wake up with bites, contact your hotel management immediately. While they may offer to switch you rooms, you may be better served to find a new hotel altogether – but don’t forget to check that room thoroughly as well.
Bed Bugs in America
We put together this little infographic to show some amazing statistics about these unpleasant critters. Learn anything new?
Here’s to a well-traveled (but bed bug free) New Year!