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5 Step Guide: How to check for bed bugs in a hotel

If you’ll be traveling anytime soon, there’s one pest issue you’ll want to keep on your radar: bed bugs. These biting pests have become well-established throughout North America, and they can infect both businesses and your homeHotels, in particular, are incredibly prone to bed bug activity.

You may get a good sense of whether or not a hotel has had problems with bed bugs by checking out online reviews before you book. However, that’s no guarantee.

No matter what, you should always check for bed bugs yourself upon arrival. If you’re not aware they’re in your room, you could transport these tiny pests back to your home. Bed bugs may hide in your suitcase and they may even lay eggs in it.

Open luggage in a hotel room

How to check for bed bugs in a hotel room

Bed bugs can hide in the most inconspicuous places and since they’re small it’s important to know what you’re looking for when inspecting a hotel for bed bugs. (We also recommend searching with a flashlight – the one on your cell phone should do the trick!)

Start with the mattress as this is likely the most common place you’ll find bed bugs. Begin inspecting the sheets, mattress pad, and box spring. After inspecting the mattress, examine the furniture and any frames hanging on the walls (yes, bed bugs can be found there, too!).

Another hot spot to look at is the suitcase rack – who knows if someone else’s suitcase had bed bugs while sitting on the rack. It’s important to note that you should keep your suitcase off the bed when conducting a bed bug inspection. You don’t want to risk bed bugs getting in your clothes or luggage while you’re checking for them!

Our infographic gives you five quick inspection tips to help put your mind at ease.

Bedbug Infographic
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If you spotted signs of bed bugs in your hotel room, notify the front desk immediately! If you have found bed bugs in your home from prior travels, contact your local Ehrlich Pest Control technician to set up a property inspection and to discuss treatment options.

What to do if a hotel has bed bugs

If you do find bed bugs, use your best judgment when deciding what to do. You could ask for a new room at the hotel or leave the property altogether. The presence of bed bugs in one room may not mean that the entire hotel has a problem. Ask to speak to the manager to see if the property has had any previous bed bug issues. This may help you make your decision.

If you choose to stay, most hotels will re-book you into a new room immediately. Be sure to ask for a new room that is not on either side or above or below the room with the bed bug problem, as these are the rooms where an infestation could most easily spread.

Bed Mattress

Bed bug precautions after travels

Once you’ve come home from your trip, immediately wash your clothes. If you can’t fit all your clothes into one load, keep them inside a plastic bag until they can be washed. Next, move onto your suitcase and vacuum the inside and out of it. When emptying the contents in your vacuum, place the debris in an airtight bag and dispose of it immediately. After your suitcase has been vacuumed, place it inside a large plastic bag, just in case you missed a bug and it lays eggs.

Woman unpacking clothes

Contact Ehrlich for your bed bug solution

For any bed bug problems you might be experiencing, Ehrlich has methods to treat your home and property to eliminate the problem and also advice on how to prevent them from returning. When you get in touch with us, we’ll come out and conduct an inspection to look for signs of bed bugs and determine the best treatment tactic. We are the experts in bed bug control, so you can be confident that we will find the optimal solution for the issue. Contact Ehrlich today!

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