Bed bugs are notoriously hearty and difficult to kill, so it is not surprising that most people dread the thought of bringing bed bugs home after traveling. Luckily, there are steps that you can take to help reduce the risk of unintentionally causing a bed bug infestation in your own home after staying in hotels or vacation rentals. One of the keys is to be diligent while traveling; taking steps to prevent bed bugs may take a little bit of time, but it is time well spent if it can prevent bed bugs in your own home. Use the following tips to help prevent bringing home bed bugs after traveling:
Carefully Inspect the Room
One misconception about bed bugs is that cleanliness is a factor. In reality, a 5-star resort is just as likely to have bed bugs as a cheap roadside motel. Thus, no matter where you are staying while you travel, it is essential to carefully inspect your room for any signs of bed bugs as soon as you walk in. Check the mattress, along the headboard, and the baseboards near the bed. Bed bugs are small in size, oval in shape, and usually have a rusty-brown coloring. If you see anything that suggests that there may be bed bugs in a room, don't be afraid to ask to be moved to another room.
Keep Your Belongings Elevated
When you're staying in a hotel or a vacation rental, it is in your best interest to keep your suitcase elevated and as far away from the bed as possible. Most hotels provide luggage racks that you can use to keep your suitcase off the floor. When you're traveling, never place your suitcase on the bed, and refrain from placing your clothing on the bed as well. You should also avoid placing dirty clothing on the floor anywhere near the bed.
Bad Everything Up
When you travel, it is always a good idea to bring a large garbage bag with you in your suitcase. As you are packing up and getting ready to check out, place all of your clothing inside the plastic bag and seal it tightly. When you get home, immediately wash all of your belongings in hot water and then dry on the hottest cycle available. Bed bugs are killed by heat, so if a bed bug attaches to any of your clothing, washing and drying will kill it and prevent an infestation in your home.