Are you considering going on a trip? Has the thought of bed bugs crossed your mind? You're not alone. More and more people are looking into practical measures to protect themselves when they travel. When bed bugs get into a home, they are a nightmare. And one of the primary ways bed bugs get into a home is by hitching a ride home from a vacation destination.
Watch Out For Bed Bugs On Your Trip
While taking a trip isn't the only way to get bed bugs, there is a higher probability that you'll bring one of these unwanted passengers home with you when you travel. Why? Because bed bugs are travelers too. They hitch a ride into hotels, motels, resorts, and other accommodations inside suitcases, bags, and other portable items. Once inside a large building where lots of people sleep, they are in their perfect environment. The blood of humans is their food source, and they prefer to feed at night while people are sleeping and heavier breathing patterns cause carbon dioxide levels to rise.
Not only do bed bugs hitch rides into hotels, motels, resorts, and other accommodations, they can be carried out as well. When a female bed bug has had a blood meal, she will look for a place to lay her eggs. This search will bring her into bags, luggage, pocketbooks, and even electronics. This will cause you to unknowingly carry a fertile female bed bug home with you or a batch of her eggs. To make matters worse, a batch of eggs left by a female bed bug does not need any assistance hatching. If the female dies, her babies will live on—most likely, in your home.
Bed Bug Prevention Tips For Traveling
If you would rather not bring bed bugs home with you, here are a few practical bed bug prevention tips to use while traveling that should help:
Before you travel, visit bedbugregistry.com to find out if anyone has reported bed bugs in the place you'll be staying. These reviews can be very insightful. Keep in mind that a bed bug report does not mean bed bugs are still present. These are difficult pests to fully control, and a sighting of a bed bug doesn't always mean an infestation. Call ahead and ask what measures are currently being taken to control bed bugs. If the establishment says they have routine bed bug inspections by a professional, that is a good indication that they have an effective plan in place. Routine inspections, employee training, and targeted bed bug treatments are the only protocol that works to fully control bed bugs.
When you arrive at your vacation destination, take a few minutes to do an inspection of your room. It may seem inconvenient, but you'll be glad you did this if bed bugs are found. Inspect mattress seams, the edge and bottom of all box springs, recesses in bed frames, bedspreads, sheets, pillow cases, outlet covers, and upholstered furniture for black streaks, black patches, tiny black droppings, shed insect skins, tiny white eggs, brown or red blood stains, or tiny six-legged bugs grouped together.
Be aware that, even if your room seems to be free of bed bugs, there can still be bed bugs present. There is also a chance that bed bugs could be present in an adjacent room. For added protection, be sure to use the luggage rack provide (or a tabletop) when you open your luggage to get articles of clothing out. When you are done wearing an article of clothing, put your your dirty laundry in a sealed plastic bag. Never leave clothes on the floor or draped over a bed or chair.
When you return home, do an inspection of your luggage and bags. Look for tiny white eggs deposited along seams, in cracks, and in other hidden spots of your suitcase.
After returning home from traveling, be sure to wash all of your clothing, bedding, and fabrics on the hottest temperature setting. This will kill bed bugs in every stage of development. If any of your items have eggs stuck to them, this will prevent them from hatching and leading to an infestation.
What Do I Do If I Bring Bed Bugs Home?
There are many ways bed bugs can get into a home; vacation traveling is only one of them. You can pick them up when you take a taxi cab, visit a retail outlet, go to the movies, go to work, go to the gym, or even check a book out from the library. Your kids can bring them home when they spend the night somewhere—or just come back from school or daycare. If you ever find bed bugs in your home, call a professional pest control company that is QualityPro certified by the National Pest Management Association. QualityPro is a seal of excellence that ensures the highest level of service.
If you live in Long Island or the Five Boroughs, the QualityPro-certified team at Parkway Pest Services would love to help you rid your home of those bed bugs. You can schedule your bed bug service by calling us or filling out our online form.