It’s almost vacation time! The excitement that comes with preparing for a trip and packing those bags is palpable. Your friends at Genie Pest Control hope you thoroughly enjoy your time away and make the most of that hard-earned break. Heck, even buy a few souvenirs to bring home with you so you’ll always remember the great time you had getting away from it all.
Not to put a damper on all of this vacation excitement, but let’s take just a minute to talk about one souvenir you do NOT want to bring back with you. That’s right: bed bugs. Even when you’ve researched the places you’ll be visiting, or if that fancy hotel you’ve booked has 4+ stars, bed bugs don’t discriminate by online ratings and couldn’t care less how much you paid for the room. They have been living the vacation high life for thousands of years and are adept hitchhikers looking for their next ride.
Bed bugs don’t fly, and they don’t need to for them to get where they are going. All it takes is a suitcase, a shoe box or cosmetic bag left in close proximity and they are on their way. Bed bugs can also survive temporarily in places such as the seats of cars, taxis, trains or buses just waiting for their opportunity to hop aboard their next unsuspecting host.
Bed bugs are often found in hotels, home-sharing rentals, hostels or apartment buildings and earned their name by thriving in places like mattresses, box springs, sofas or soft chairs. They have also been found behind baseboards, electrical covers, under wallpaper or inside picture frames. Bed bugs like to conceal themselves in cracks and crevices, which can make them difficult to spot with a cursory glance.
Even though you’ll be anxious to get your vacation started, take a moment or two when you arrive at your destination to determine if bed bugs are present.
If you see any signs of bed bug infestation, it is within your rights to notify management and ask for another room far from the one originally. Bed bugs can travel between rooms by hitchhiking on housekeeping carts and even through the wall sockets to an adjoining room.
When you come home, even if you haven’t experienced any potential bed bug activity during your trip, it’s a good idea to inspect your suitcases before you bring them into the house. View our bed bug treatment preparation checklist. Consider steaming your suitcase with a garment steamer before storing the case for its next use (the heat from the steam is a great way to kill any bed bugs or eggs that may have come along with you for the ride).
Every item of clothing that went with you on the trip, even if you didn’t actually soil or wear it, needs to be laundered in very warm or hot water. For dry-clean items, please keep them in a sealed plastic bag until you are able to drop them off to be cleaned.
Even the cleanest of homes can experience a bed bug infestation, and it really is as easy as picking them up after a trip or vacation. If you find yourself in this situation, don’t wait to contact the bed bug extermination professionals at Genie Pest Control.