Travel Health

Avoiding Bed Bugs Abroad – Holiday Health

Bed bugs

The holidays can be the perfect time to treat oneself or the family to a trip abroad. Unfortunately, few things can ruin it as thoroughly as an encounter with those blood-sucking parasites known as bed bugs. Encounters with these nasty pests have been increasing over the last several years around the world. Avoiding them requires keeping an eye out for them and staying away from potential problem areas.

Although bed bug bites do not pose a health risk, they can be very irritating and could become infected if scratching causes the skin to break. Psychologically, it can be hard to get a good night’s sleep knowing bed bugs may be hiding in the bedding. By conducting a little research ahead of the journey and knowing what to look for while staying away from home, travellers can avoid unpleasant bites and bringing bed bugs back with them. This can be a lot easier than eliminating an infestation at home later.

Check the Bed on Arrival

Upon arrival, be sure to check around the room for any signs of the existence of bed bugs. Look under the mattress and upholstered furniture, behind framed pictures or mirrors hanging on the walls and in the cracks of walls. Before looking, be sure to find an elevated place away from the wall to put the luggage. Leaving the bags on the floor will allow bed bugs to slip in while attention is drawn elsewhere. If there isn’t an elevated spot, put them in the middle of the floor in the bathroom.

Bugs in Bags

If going out to a theatre or other dimly lit attraction, do not place purses or other bags on the floor. Once the lights go out, there is no telling what might crawl inside. Putting coats in adjoining, vacant seats should also be avoided. Keeping clothes and bags and your suitcase off of the floor can certainly sometimes make a difference i.e avoids those insects and creatures which are crawling around on the floor, from having an easy task to get into your items.

Check your Luggage

When the holiday is over, be sure to check the luggage for bed bugs. Place all clothing, even those items that have not been worn, in sealable plastic bags. Re-wrap the luggage in plastic. if you you only discover that you has bed bugs at the end of the hotel stay, if you then also take those bugs home with you by accident withotu realising, the problems with getting rid of bed bugs back in your own house, will really ruin the happy holiday memories.

Review the Hotel’s History

Check online reviews of places being considered for overnight accommodation for problems they might have had in the past. Certainly avoid any where previous guests report seeing bed bugs, but also be wary of any reviews that report excessive clutter, which can be used as hiding places by the pests. Don’t assume expensive resorts are immune. These pests can thrive in even the cleanest of conditions if they are brought in on the luggage of other guests.

Protect luggage and other bags that will be mixed with those of other travellers by wrapping them in plastic. This way, if someone else has encountered bed bugs and they are in their luggage, the pests won’t be able to migrate to your bags. Some of the steps needed to avoid bed bugs during a trip abroad may seem bordering on paranoia, but they are a lot easier than trying to get rid of an infestation of the pests brought home from the holiday. By taking the time to research possible destination points and then staying on guard for signs of the blood suckers, travellers can avoid a potentially stressful and expensive problem later.

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