One of my personal quests has been to find it WHERE the bed bugs are biting. There have been several reports the past year of bed bugs in various Thailand hotels. There were even a few stories about a few deaths related to the pesticides used to kill bed bugs in Thailand (some of the most effective bed bug pesticides are banned in Western countries because they are not safe for humans; second and third world countries may still opt to use them, however).
In 2011 there were specific reports that at least 3 people fell ill and died in Chang Mai, Thailand in the same hotel. Traces of the organophosphate chlorpyrifos were found in the hotel room where one of the guests died. These traces suggest that chlorpyrifos poisoning may have occurred (caused by the bed bug pesticide).
Anyone who is traveling throughout Thailand or SouthEast Asia should be advised that the risk of bed bugs is extremely high. If you frequent any popular hot spots such as Koh Samui, Koh Phi Phi, Phuket, Kao San Road, or Chang Mai, there is a good chance that many of the guest houses or hostels will have had some bed bug reports in the past while. It is up to you as the traveler to make sure you do a thorough inspection to protect yourself from getting bed bug bites while traveling in Thailand.
A great guide for any backpacker to read before they travel is the how to inspect your hotel room for bed bugs article on our website. This article goes into great detail how travelers can specifically inspect their hotels to prevent the occurrence of bed bugs. Because Thailand is such a popular country with the backpacker circuit, you are always bound to have bedbugs being spread throughout as the travelers move from one place to another.
If you are traveling to Thailand, be aware that you may face bed bugs at some point, especially if you choose to stay in lower-end budget accommodation such as hostels. There are a few Lonely Planet threads about bed bug infestations in Khao San Road hostels.
BedBugs.net has recently update their registry to provide many more reports of bedbugs in hotels and guesthouses that are located in Thailand. To view the list of places that have had previous reports of bed bugs please click here.
Note, you can now submit / search hotel or hostel bed bug reports in thailand in our Worldwide Bed Bug Registry.