Given the amount of press bed bugs have received in the past few years, it is not surprising that people are worried about picking up bed bugs while they travel. This is quite reasonable given the fact that a bed bug infestation in a home can cost thousands of dollars to home owners. Given the current bed bug epidemic, there are a number of things you should do to prevent bed bugs from entering your home.

A common place where people pick up bed bugs is during their summer vacation. While staying in a bed bug infested hotel room, they will often have bugs enter their luggage and transport the bugs back to their home. The key to bed bug prevention while on vacation is to take precautionary steps to ensure that you don’t have any problems. Below is a handy step by step guide to ensure that you can avoid bed bugs when you are traveling.

  1. Do Your Research – Before you plan on staying in a hotel always make sure you go online and look up reviews on the hotel. If you notice that some guests are complaining about a bed bug problem in the hotel, your best bet is to look elsewhere. Although it is impossible to complete prevent bed bugs from entering a hotel, it is wise to look for hotels that have a good track record.
  2. Pack Your Bags Properly – A lot of people don’t realize there are actual bed bug liners that you can purchase for your luggage and bags. These liners are designed to go around the interior of the bag to ensure there is a proper seal. A proper bed bug encasement will ensure that you don’t have any unwanted bed bugs sneaking into your luggage while you are on your next trip.
  3. Use Common Sense – If you opt to stay in the cheapest hotel in the area you should have certain expectations of the type of room you are getting. This is especially true if you are traveling in Southeast Asia where there are a lot of budget accommodation rooms available. Always use common sense when choosing a place to stay when staying in lower budget hotels or hostels.
  4. Inspect Your Room – A quick bed bug inspection will take you only a few minutes to do and it can save you hours of stress if you end up getting bed bugs. The first thing you need to do is start by looking at the bottom of the mattress. Quickly flip over the mattress and look at the inside seams of the mattress. You should also look at the carpet edges and underneath the bed frame. Although it is easy to miss bed bugs with an inspection, if the infestation is large enough, you are likely to catch it.
  5. Avoid Shared Accommodation – People who are on a budget often opt to stay in hostel rooms that can have up to 10 people in one room. This is a great place to catch bed bugs because of the number of luggage that is present in the single room. If you are forced to stay in a hostel room with other people, make sure you ask the management what strategies they currently use to prevent bed bugs. The hostel should have a comprehensive plan for tackling these pesky critters.
  6. Unpacking your Luggage – When you return home after your vacation it is important that you wash all of your clothes immediately in hot water. Washing the clothes will kill any bed bugs that you might have on them. You should also inspect all of your luggage and backpacks. Any suspicion that you might have bed bugs in the luggage should prompt you to put them in a deep freeze over night or steam clean them immediately. These are two effective methods that can kill bed bugs.

When it comes to preventing bed bugs while you are on a vacation it is important to be diligent. The important thing to remember about bed bugs is your first line of defence is prevention. If you can stop the bed bugs from coming inside your home, you are going to save yourself hours of frustration and possibly thousands of dollars in pest control fees.

Be smart when you travel and choose hotels that have a good reputation. Because a reputation is everything for a hotel, they will stop at nothing to ensure their image remains intact. Always do your homework before you plan your trip. This will save you a lot of hassle in the future. Using the 6 steps above is not guaranteed to prevent bed bugs from entering your home, but it is a good place to start.