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Summer Travel Tips For Avoiding Bed Bugs

By Chris Williams on July 25, 2016.

Every year about this time, we post a blog or two about how to avoid bed bugs when traveling and staying in hotels or motels. In the past, we’ve provided general information in these blogs:

Here’s How Hotels Inspect

This time we provide inspection tips directly from the hotel industry (Hotel Business, July 19, 2016). This is a quick, weekly bed bug inspection recommended for hotel housekeeping staff. This inspection concentrates on the bed and headboard, two of the most likely places to find bed bugs. If your place of lodging appears questionable, your bed bug inspection should be more extensive, involving areas of the room beyond the bed.

  1. Use a good flashlight.
  2. Begin with gentle exhalations along the top corners and sides of the headboard since bed bugs are attracted to the CO2 given off by breathing humans.
  3. Slide a credit card along the headboard where it is attached to the wall. Bed bugs like to hide in small, tight spaces. If a credit card fits in the space, so can bed bugs. Look for live bugs, shed skins, feces, or eggs that are dislodged by the card.
  4. Pull back the bedding, one piece at a time, from each of the two corners at the head of the bed, looking for signs of bed bugs.
  5. Next inspect the mattress edges at these two exposed corners, focusing on the rolled edges, tufts, and any attached labels or handles where bed bugs like to hide.
  6. Lift the top corners of the mattress and inspect the bed skirt and box spring underneath.

If you’re still not sure whether all of this is necessary, check out this blog which provides another version of a quick bed bug inspection, Do I Really Have to Check My Hotel Room for Bed Bugs?

And finally, if you’ve returned from your trip but you’re not confident that you didn’t bring bed bugs home with you, here are the steps you should take post-trip:

Photo Credit : Les Roches International School of Hotel Management | CC BY 2.0

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