Paradise or a Nightmare?? For many, spring break is here and the travel plans have been set. As you’re packing the sunblock and swimsuits the one thing you’re not thinking about is what may be in your luggage when you get back…bed bugs. The more traveling you do, the more likely you are to come in contact with them and the more likely you are to bring them all the way home. They can be anywhere, especially in your hotel room and especially on your trip back.
The truth is, bed bugs are no longer an uncommon pest that we hear about from time to time. They can be found just about anywhere and although not a seasonal pest, prime bed bug time appears to be during the summer months with nearly half (49 percent) of respondents saying infestations occur most often then and least often in the winter.
In a recent survey by the NPMA, 75% of pest control professionals indicated that they have encountered infestations of bed bugs in hotels and motels. So when traveling this spring break and this summer, follow these safe tips to make sure you’re just bringing back a sunburn and souvenirs!
Prevent Bed Bugs When You Travel:
- Thoroughly inspect the entire room before unpacking, including behind the headboard and in sofas/chairs. If any pests are spotted, change rooms/establishments immediately.
- Before you inspect your room, keep your luggage off the floor and consider either using the bathtub or the luggage rack
If you do need to change rooms, be sure that you do not move to a room adjacent and/or directly above/below the suspected infestation. Bed bugs can easily hitchhike via housekeeping carts, luggage and even through wall sockets. If an infestation is spreading, it typically does so in the rooms closest to the origin.
- Consider placing your suitcase in a plastic trash bag or protective cover during the duration of your trip to ensure that bed bugs cannot take up residence there prior to departure.
- Remember: bed bugs travel by hitching rides. After your trip, inspect your suitcases before bringing them into the house. Vacuum your suitcase thoroughly before storing away. Consider using a garment hand steamer to steam your luggage, which will kill any bed bugs or eggs that may have hitched a ride home.
- Wash all of your clothes – even those that have not been worn – in hot water to ensure that any bed bugs that may have made it that far are not placed into your drawers/closet.
Seitz Brothers offers over-the-counter luggage spray to help deter the spreading of bed bugs, call our office for more information or stop in today to pick some up! If you are concerned that you have an infestation after traveling, we also offer free estimates and would be more than happy to help 888-467-1008
References: www.pestworld.org, www.uky.edu