Hotel Bedbug Check

kid hiding under the covers in a bedWhat you expect is a room where you can relax and enjoy your stay. It should go without saying that you want it to be free of bedbugs, bites or even a bad case of the heebie-jeebies. But these days, you can’t be too careful. Bedbug infestations are rising. Don’t let unwelcome “roommates” crash your vacation. Here’s how to ensure a holiday that’s free of the bloodsucking pests.

Your bedbug check should start at the planning stage. These critters don’t discriminate and may be found at any hotel, no matter how many stars it promises. So it’s best to do some research on your hotel of choice¬†or¬†before you book.

How to Check for Signs of Bedbugs

  • Pull up the sheets and inspect the mattress, especially along the seams. The insects themselves are visible, but you’re more likely to see the droppings they leave behind, in the form of tiny brownish-red or black dots.
  • Look behind the headboard and behind any bedside tables.
  • Lastly, check any other nooks and crannies in chairs, pillows and drapery, windowsills and even behind picture frames or peeled-back wallpaper.

If you see any bedbugs, specks, eggs or casings, grab your bags, and report your findings to the front desk. Request a different room or move to a new hotel and repeat the inspection.

Better Safe Than Sorry

Even if you don’t find anything, here’s how to make sure it stays that way. Keep your stuff off the floor and the bed. Store suitcases in a closet or on a luggage rack (away from the walls). Inspect clothes and put them in resealable bags as you pack. Back at home, launder everything in hot water and transfer to a dryer. (Dry cleaning should also do the trick.)

These few extra steps may seem like a hassle, but that’s nothing compared to the time and money you’ll spend trying to exterminate unwanted stowaways that follow you home.

Up Next: Natural and Effective Pest-Control Techniques

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