Tips To Help Avoid Bringing Home Bed Bugs When Traveling

Taking a fun trip and staying in a hotel, resort, or vacation rental is something that most families enjoy and look forward to. However, no one wants to go on vacation and then inadvertently bring bed bugs back to their home after traveling. Bed bugs are incredibly hardy and resilient, so once they are in a home, it can be very frustrating and expensive to completely eliminate them and ensure that your home is free of bed bugs. The good news is that there are things that can be done to prevent a bed bug infestation in your home after traveling. Take the following steps while traveling to help avoid bringing home bed bugs:

Do a Thorough Inspection Immediately After Checking In

Whether you're staying at a hotel, resort, or vacation rental, it is always in your best interest to do a thorough inspection immediately after you check in. Don't sit down and relax or begin unpacking — always check for signs of bed bugs first. Carefully examine the sheets, mattress, and the headboard for signs of bed bug activity. If you see any bed bugs scurrying around, immediately leave the room. Other signs of bed bugs can include small, rusty-colored bloodstains on the sheets, mattress pad, mattress, or box spring.

Keep Your Belongings Away from the Bed

Even if you don't see any signs of bed bugs upon checking in, it is still in your best interest to be diligent. Avoid placing your suitcase on the bed or on the floor close to the bed. It is best to keep your luggage elevated, preferably on a luggage stand. Hanging your clothes in the closet is ideal, but you can place your belongings in dresser drawers if the dresser is not located right next to the bed. 

Have a Plan for Packing Up and Arriving Home

At the end of your stay at a vacation rental or hotel, do not just throw all of your belongings into your luggage. A good rule of thumb is to place your clothing and other personal items in a non-porous container that can be tightly closed, such as a garbage bag that can be tied shut. When you get home, do not bring your luggage right into your home. Instead, set your washer to the hottest setting, and then bring in the garbage bags and immediately launder the clothing that you took with you on your trip. After washing everything in the hottest water possible, dry them on the hot setting on your dryer. 

If you have found bed bugs in your home, contact a local pest control service for bed bug treatment.