How Check Bed Bugs Hotel

How to Check for Bed Bugs in a Hotel Room

Savvy travelers need to know how to check for bed bugs in a hotel room, no matter if they’re staying a night in a rural motel or a week in a five-star resort. After all, the presence of bed bugs is "not determined by the cleanliness of the living conditions where they are found," according to the Centers for Disease Control. Here, five tips for how to check for (and deal with) bed bugs in a hotel room.

1. Do your homework before making a hotel reservation.

If you’re worried about bed bugs before you even check in, look up your hotel on this bed bug registry to find out if a hotel has—or has had—bed bugs. You can read more about the risks of bed bug bites here . While we’re all for coming home with souvenirs , bed bugs aren’t ones we’d recommend.

2. Check every inch of your bed.

The first place you should check for bed bugs is the most obvious: your hotel bed . Look along the mattress seams and zippers, under the mattress, and at each joint of the bed frame. We don’t mean just lifting up one corner to look—that won’t cut it. Make sure to lift up each corner of the mattress and thoroughly check for signs. Wondering what bed bugs look like? Measuring only four to five millimeters, they’re the size of a standard pearl. They have flat, oval-shaped red or brown bodies, complete with tiny legs and antenna. Since bed bugs typically come out at night, keep a lookout for other tell-tale traces of their presence such as blood (ew, we know) and/or tiny white bed bug eggs about the size of a mustard seed or grain of sand.

3. Don’t stop at the bed—check the carpet and furniture as well.

According to the CDC, bed bugs generally live within eight feet of where you sleep. So check for the same bed bug signs along zippers and covers of the in-room sofa and chairs next. Bed bugs’ relatively flat bodies allow them to fit into tight crevices, so look under buttons and at the seams of the furniture. Scan the area where the carpet meets the baseboards and, before you unpack and hang up your clothes, be sure to check the joints of the closets and drawer seals. For extra back-up, use your phone’s flashlight to help you see the small signs of bed bugs in hard-to-reach corners. Last but not least, check around your bedside table. Do you find any signs of bed bugs around picture frames, the joints of your nightstand’s drawers, or around the lamps?

4. Keep your suitcase on a luggage rack far from the bed.

A word to the wise: Don’t throw your suitcase on the bed or the floor while you’re in the process of searching for bed bugs. If bed bugs are present, tossing the suitcase on the floor is an open invitation for them to climb aboard. While you’re making sure the coast is clear, use the luggage rack or place your suitcase on a hard surface, like a table, to minimize your risk of attracting bed bugs.

5. Request to change rooms.

If you suspect bed bugs after any of these steps, tell the hotel front desk immediately and ask to be moved to a different room —specifically, one that isn’t directly above, below, or next to the room you’re currently in, Rentokil suggests.

This Is How to Spot Bed Bugs in Your Hotel Room

Bed bugs won’t just ruin your stay—that bad luck could follow you home, because bed bugs can latch onto your clothes and hitch a ride back in your luggage. Here’s how to avoid bringing these unintended souvenirs back from your next vacation.

You don’t have to make the bed. You can get fresh towels every day. There’s no need to set your alarm. When you check into a hotel room on vacation, you don’t have a care in the world—well, except for bed bugs. Nothing can turn a relaxing vacation into a traveler’s nightmare quite like sharing the bed with creepy crawlers. Find out what the dirtiest spots in hotel rooms are, too.

And bed bugs can run rampant in any hotel room, regardless of location or price. “Bed bugs don’t care about socioeconomic status—they just want a warm food source,” Ken Unger, the president of Suburban Pest Control, told Reader’s Digest. “Even the nicest hotels can have a case of bed bugs.”

Thankfully, pest control experts Rentokil.com have a comprehensive guide to checking your hotel room for bed bugs. The most obvious place to find bed bugs is—you guessed it—the bed. Start by searching along the mattress seams, as well as under the mattress. The frame’s joints, crevices, and slats could provide an ideal place for bed bugs to hide, too. Similarly, bed bugs find cozy nesting places along the seams, inside the covers, and around the zips of sofas and chairs, too. Bed bugs can also hang out in rather unlikely places, including cupboards, nightstands, and luggage. Before you start checking, make sure you know what bed bugs look like!

As you search, keep an eye out for other warning signs that aren’t the bugs themselves. Anything from shed skin to blood smears to small black marks might signal a bed bug infestation. If you think your place has bed bugs, report it to the hotel staff immediately and request a change of rooms—but avoid getting swapped directly beside, above, or below the infested room, as it’s likely that the bed bugs could spread. And you should advise the hotel to seek professional bed bug treatment (these secrets from hotel managers will help you avoid run-down places.)

How to Check for Bed Bugs in a Hotel

Tips to help keep the pests from hitching a ride home with you

Checking into a hotel for a holiday vacation? Beware of bed bugs. Hotels and motels can be hot spots for infestations of the small reddish-brown insects, which can live happily in a bed and hitch a ride home on luggage and clothing.

Bed bugs feed on the blood of people and animals, usually while they sleep. "There have been quite a few studies that have shown that bed bugs don’t transmit disease, like mosquitoes do," says Michael Potter, Ph.D., a professor of entymology at the University of Kentucky. "But the welts (from their bites) can be itchy."

If these bloodsuckers get into your luggage and travel home with you, they can take up residence in your own mattresses, box springs, and furniture, possibly causing an infestation. That’s a holiday gift no one wants.

Here are five steps that will help you avoid a bed bug encounter during your vacation.

Go to Consumer Reports’ 2018 Holiday Central for updates on deals, expert product reviews, insider tips on shopping, and much more.

Bed Bug Tips

These pests are more common than you think. On the "Consumer 101" TV show, Consumer Reports’ expert Haniya Rae explains how you can protect yourself against a bed bug infestation.

Tips for Traveling Without Bed Bugs

1.When you first enter a new hotel room, put your luggage on a luggage rack or in the bathroom—an unlikely place for bed bugs to hide—while you inspect the bedding and furniture.

2.Pull back the bed sheets and blankets and check the mattress and box-spring seams for bugs, especially at the head of the bed. Adults, nymphs, and eggs are visible to the naked eye. Also keep your eyes peeled for exoskeletons (casings that the bugs leave behind when they molt) and dark, rust-colored spots. You can also lift the mattress and check underneath, too, using a flashlight if possible.

3.Consider checking upholstered furniture, too, says Potter. "If I’m traveling, I’ll take a quick look at a couch or recliner, if there is one—at the seams and the head and neck area."

If you see any telltale signs, tell hotel staff and ask for a new room, preferably in another part of the building.

4.Stow your suitcases, zipped closed, on a luggage rack or a hard surface for the length of your stay. You can also pack large plastic trash bags and keep your luggage in them during your time in the hotel. "The other thing I do is try not to spread my stuff all over room," says Potter. "If there happen to be bugs, they sometimes will get into things and the more stuff you have around, the higher the probability of that."

5.When you get home, if you have any concerns that you’ve brought home a stray hitchhiker or two, tumble your travel clothes in a hot dryer for up to 30 minutes. (The heat will kill bed bugs, but simply washing the clothes usually won’t.)

Are There Bed Bugs in My Hotel Room?

Sometimes bed bugs making an unwelcome appearance in hotel rooms, and while hotels might want to keep that information quiet, there are a number of ways you can find out about infestations before you book a stay. Then, when you check in, be sure to search your room for any signs and notify staff immediately if you find them.

How to Find Out If Your Hotel Has Bed Bugs

Research The Bed Bug Registry, a site that collects reports of bed bugs from hotel guests. The Registry allows you to look up a particular hotel—or even all hotels in a given city—and see where guests have reported encounters with bed bugs in a hotel or apartment building nearby. If your hotel is listed with bed bug sightings, don’t panic. Pay attention to the date of the last report of bed bugs. The hotel may have cleared up the problem. You can also check review websites like TripAdvisor to see if anyone has recently reported bed bugs at a hotel. If you stumble across anything that indicates the presence of bed bugs, call the hotel and inquire about the situation prior to booking.

How to Look for Bed Bugs

Once you check in, take some time to look for the telltale signs of bed bugs in the hotel room. Adult bed bugs grow to a half an inch long, and you can spot them with the naked eye. They are, however, good at hiding, so you’ll have to look closely. Common places for bed bugs to hide in hotel rooms are in the seams of the mattress (pull up the sheets to look closely), in the cracks of the bed’s headboard, in the baseboards, and in the folds of upholstered furniture. Bed bugs will appear as reddish-brown ovals in these places.

Also, keep an eye out for droppings the bed bugs might have left behind in the hotel room. They’d appear as small brown spots, possibly tinged with blood. Check the sheets and mattress for these tiny spots.

What to Do If You See a Bed Bug

If you suspect there are bed bugs in your hotel, take a picture with your cell phone to show the hotel manager. Don’t expect any bed bugs you see to stay in one place while you call down to the hotel staff; they crawl about as fast as ants and like to hide.

If you have a reasonable suspicion that bed bugs are infesting your hotel room, consider leaving, as bed bugs travel to other rooms through cracks in the ceiling, floors, and walls. Thus, switching to another room is not a safe bet. Let the hotel manager know right away about the bed bugs; the hotel needs to be able to address the problem immediately.

Even if you don’t see any signs of bed bugs in your hotel, be careful not to allow any the opportunity to hitch a ride home with you. Don’t put your clothes on the carpet or on upholstered chairs. Likewise, keep your suitcase off the floor and the bed. Use a metal suitcase rack if one is available.

How to Treat Bed Bug Bites

Bed bugs typically bite people at night, and they leave small red welts, usually clustered in one area, that eventually become inflamed and itchy. Sometimes it takes a few days for the bites to show, and some people might not show any symptoms at all. If you get bit, you can sooth the irritation the same way you would a mosquito bite—use anti-itch creams, take antihistamines, or apply ice.

5 ways to check for bed bugs in a hotel room

Only a few sleeps until Christmas. With global travel on the rise, the prevalence of bed bugs can be a fast-growing problem for premium hotels and boutique guest houses alike. Notorious for impacting brand image, reputation and customer satisfaction, these pests are highly challenging to eliminate and can result in revenue loss through unoccupied rooms if overlooked, or left untreated. Even the best-run and cleanliness-conscious of establishments can suffer bed bug infestations. The influx of travellers to and from exotic destinations, where bed bugs are tolerated, calls for increased efforts in regular, informed inspections and prompt remedial action.

How do you get bed bugs?

Bed bugs have become a significant problem everywhere in recent years. Since the early 2000s there has been a drastic increase in the number of bed bug infestations around the globe. In Ireland, 2016 saw an 80% increase in bed bug infestation, compared to the same period in 2015.

Hotels and other overnight accommodation facilities play an important part in the spread of bed bugs. The increase in global travel has led to these facilities receiving a high amount of human traffic. This allows bed bugs to spread easily, discreetly travelling from one occupant to another. With the increasing travel at this time of year, the problem becomes more prevalent.

How to check hotel rooms for bed bugs?

When staying in a hotel, hostel, B&B or any other overnight accommodation while on holiday, inspecting the room for bed bugs can help you avoid bed bug bites and bringing bed bug infestation back to your home.

1. Mattress and bed frame

Bed bugs often like to live near their food source. That’s why beds are always an ideal hotspot for bed bugs.

How to check a mattress and bed frame for bed bugs:

  • Fully inspect the headboard, checking in between any design patterns. Move the bed away from the wall to check behind and underneath.
  • Check any and all crevices, corners, joints, carvings and any over small cracks and holes on the bed frame.
  • Inspect the bedding. This includes checking the inside and outside of the pillow cases, duvet covers, and the fitted sheet, paying close attention to the seams.

2. Bedside cabinets

Items of furniture near a bed such as nightstands and bedside cabinets are also key bed bug hotspots

How to check bedside cabinets for bed bugs:

  • Look inside drawers, especially along the joints as well as the handles
  • Inspect behind and underneath the bedside cabinet
  • Check ornaments, lamps, and picture frames.

3. Wardrobe and skirting boards

Although it is true bed bugs like to hang out in areas close to their food source, that doesn’t stop them from visiting other places in a room.

How to check wardrobes and skirting boards for bed bugs:

  • Thoroughly inspect wardrobes, drawers and other pieces of furniture. This includes inspecting behind, on top of, and beneath.
  • Check in between joints, handles and any crevices, cracks and dents.
  • Inspect the gaps between the skirting boards and walls.

4. Sofa, chair and throws

Bed bugs are attracted to the CO2 we produce. You can often find them hidden in areas which see high levels of human interaction such as chairs.

How to check sofas chairs and throws for bed bugs:

  • Remove the cushions from the seats and check above and below. Look in between joints and crevices.
  • Remove the covers off the cushions and check the seams, corners and zips for bed bugs.

5. Luggage

Luggage is the main instigator when it comes to bed bug infestations. Best practise is to place your luggage in the en-suite before you begin your checks to eliminate the risk of it acquiring some unexpected stowaways.

How to check luggage stands for bed bugs:

  • Check where the webbing wraps around the frame
  • Inspect along the joints on the stand

What signs of bed bug should you be looking for?

Bed bug signs

  • Live Bed Bugs –Bedbugs are small, flat and oval shaped. They have six legs and two antennae and are a reddish-brown colour. Adult bed bugs are usually around 5-6mm in size.
  • Blood smears –This happens when a bed bug has been accidentally crushed after a meal and look like small red stains. This comes from the undigested blood meal in its body.
  • Dark/black stains –This comes from the dark liquid bed bugs excrete after a meal.
  • Shed skin –A bed bug sheds its skin in order to grow and move on to the next stage of their life cycle. Once they have fully matured they no longer go through this process. Sightings of shed skin usually point towards indications of a large infestation.
  • Bed bug eggs –Bed bugs can lay anywhere between 200 and 500 eggs over a two month period, and are usually laid in batches of 10. Bed bug eggs are 1mm long and are a pearly white colour.

Remember to “Look before you book”accommodation to avoid bed bug problem!

If you have found yourself with a bed bug problem, the best way to remove bed bugs from your home or business is to enlist the help of a pest control professional. Or simply Tweet us at @Rentokil_PestIE to get immediate assistance.

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