Lets talk Bed Bugs

No one wants nasty guests in their bed. Bed bugs are great hitchhikers. They hide on anything possible to travel from hotel to hotel to even your own home. There is nothing worse than having a vacation or trip ruined by these pesky little things. Follow these recommendations to prevent these un-welcomed guests crawling into bed with you.


Necessary tools:

Flash light and credit card or hotel key card. The flashlight will help you spot any signs of the bug. You can use the flashlight mode on your cell phone to help with this. Bed bugs like to come out in the dark, so shining the light on them will make it easier to spot. The card will be able to fit practically everywhere a bed bug can fit. Sliding the card along cracks and crevices will push the bugs out. Ew gross, I know!


What to look for:

Bed bugs are four to five millimeters in size. They are close to the size of a pearl. They have an oval- shaped body that allows them to hide in very small places. Their bodies are typically brown or red. As they come out at night, they can still be spotted during the day if you do some digging. They leave traces of their presence around. This could be stains of blood, white eggs which are about the size of a grain of sand, or dark almost black stains which happens when the bug excretes after a meal. These guys are good at hide and go seek so, really put effort into looking for their hideout.

Step one: Keep everything away from the bed

When you first get into your hotel room, the first thing you want to do is throw your luggage down and jump into bed. Bad idea! If there are bed bugs present in the room, throwing your bags on the floor or near the bed is an open invitation for bed bugs to hitch a ride back to your house! To prevent this, put your luggage on the rack far away from the bed or put your luggage in the bathroom. This is one area of the room that is cleaned thoroughly. If you want to take one more additional step, you can can carry along a large plastic bag to help keep your luggage sealed. This might seem over the top however, this can really help prevent bringing these little creatures home with you. 

Photo Credit: Bedbugs.org


Step 2: Check the room

Bed bugs tend to live near their food, which is us. GAG! In a hotel, guests typically lay in bed even when they are not sleeping in a hotel room. Search within a 7 foot radius around the bed. They don’t just hide on the beds. The mattress and frame is the typical area for the bed bug to be but that does not limit them to just that area. Other furniture and carpet could also be places for them to hide. Bed bugs can fit into tight crevices which is why the frame and other furniture are great options for them. The flash light and card will come in handy while looking at all the crevices and corners throughout the room.  On the mattress, you’ll need to check all corners and crevices and seams. They could be tucked in on any part of the mattress. Stripping the bed will help looking for these bugs. Checking the sheets is also a good idea. This is where you will be able to see any stains that the bug has left behind. Check the seams of the carpet around the bed, behind the sidetable and if there is a fabric chair or couch close by be sure to give that a good looking over as well.

Photo Credit: Bedbugs.org


Step 3: Any Presence of bugs

If you suspect any bed bugs after these steps, run! Go to the hotel front desk and request a different room in a different part of the hotel. Don’t feel bad about asking for a new room. It is not worth the risk of getting bitten by these gross creatures and bringing them home with you to share with family.

Photo credit: Future of Business and Tech


Do you have a bed bug story? Please share with us in the comments section. We would love to learn from people who have experienced these first hand.


94 Replies to “Lets talk Bed Bugs”

  1. I don’t have a bed bug story, thank goodness, but I really appreciate the article learned a lot about checking for these kritters during hotel stays.

  2. when we went to italy we stayed in a convent and my friend woke up in the morning with bed bug bites all over his head and neck

  3. I found bed bugs in my room at a very swanky resort. The first place I found one was in the bathroom, along the baseboard. Then I found a huge one while I sat on the bed. I captured both and called the front desk. They said they would clean my room. Another person came up and when they realized I knew what they were ( hours of health dept training on my end) they offered to move me across the hall. I said NO and packed up to leave. They ended up moving me to a new townhouse located on the resort and drycleaned everything I brought with me. I threw out everything that wouldn’t fit in the freezer or dryer at the townhouse. So, don’t settle for a cleaning or room move near the room with bugs.

    1. Thank you for sharing your story! This is good information! I can’t stress enough the asking for a new room and getting away and not feeling bad for asking.

  4. I watched a news story on TV yesterday where they talked about bed bugs being found in airline seats, bus seats and movie theaters. You can be transporting them and not even know it.

  5. this is a scary tale – on vacations i stayed in mostly 5 star resorts and never gave this much tought – checking at night with a light and credit card is a tip i’m sure to remember and use

  6. for years I was a road warrior sleeping in hotels for up to 250 nights per year — i frequented upper tier business hotels and never gave bed bugs much thought — the precautions you mention make sense — i expect to be using a light and credit card at night to check for bed bugs just to be on the safe side and put my mind at ease in the future

  7. Oh my gosh! This is something I’m so afraid of-bringing bed bugs home from a hotel. I’m definitely bookmarking this, I know it will come in handy.

  8. Thank you for all of the tips on bed bugs in hotel rooms from how to recognize them to what to do if you find them. Very informative!

  9. Thank God I don’t have any bed bug stories to tell and I hope I never do. A couple of years ago a child brought one to school with her and the school practically shut down. They are just a horrible little bug.

  10. We went on a cruise and when we returned we had bed bugs in our luggage.. From now on, we always put the luggage in the garage and spray around it. Often you bring home more than souvenirs!!

  11. Gross! I have only seen bed bugs once in my life and i left and didn’t stay at that shack of a hotel. We were at the beach and had no reservations and couldn’t find anything but this out of the way snakey looking motel that had a vacancy and soon as i got in the room i checked the bed and sure enough there those gross little nasty bugs were. I went right back to the front desk and made them refund my money and we left and went to another beach and found a great room with no bugs!! Of course it was like 30 miles away from where we were and we were exhausted but there was no way i was sleeping in that nasty place.

  12. No, I haven’t personally had bed bugs. But, I know someone that had them. I look around my apartment all the time and spray for them. You can never be to careful. Your article is very helpful and informative. Thanks for sharing.

  13. Yes! We often go to hotels for little getaways ! My friends and I went away for a weekend and I am the only one that checks beds and for bedbugs! What do you think happened? I found one and we got moved to another room. My friends thought I was crazy but thanked me later.

  14. Yuck! Thanks for a very informative article! My best friend years ago had started dating a guy who had bedbugs in his apartment! Eeeek! I always thought “sleep tight, don’t let the bedbugs bite” was just an expression lol Nope, I was wrong lol Her 2 y/o son got eat up with bites & after 6 months of doctors visits, a dermatologist finally figured out, what all the bites were all over his little body.

  15. Thank you for the great advice on how lot be on the look out for bed bugs. I really hope to never have them in my house. They scare me!

  16. This is really interesting. I actually learned a lot about bed bugs. I feel so disgusted. Going to try these tricks next time I am staying in a hotel just to be safe.

  17. OMG! SO GROSS! That said, THANK YOU, for sharing this article! I had NO idea how nasty these disgusting things were! And I thought the bedspreads were the worst thing in hotels! Not even close to these guys! I also loved the idea of wrapping up luggage and putting it in or near the bathroom because that is the most sanitary room in all hotel rooms! This will literally give me nightmares for life! Thank you again so much for sharing this extremely informative, if not terrifying, article!

  18. I have stayed in a hotel with bed bugs before and those little critters are almost impossible to get rid of! We were lucky enough to have caught them in time to destroy our clothes (Thank goodness it was just an overnight trip so we did not have much). The manager was very apologetic after I let him have it. A couple weeks later, the place was closed for a fumigation. I guess he got the hint!

  19. I have never checked for bed bugs when I’ve stayed away from home but I will from now on. That is scary to think about taking them home.

  20. I don’t have a bed bug story that I have had to deal with at my home but I have worked at many hotels. I can tell you that it is important to check the bed to make sure it is clean and the sheets have been changed. Yes the sheets should be changed and fresh for every new guest but unfortunately I have witnessed them not. Please take this seriously because those pesky critters are hard to get rid of.

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  22. I have never had a bed bug experience, thank the Lord. This article is very helpful and I plan to use all the tips to prevent any infestation.

  23. I will never be able to sleep in a hotel bed again. I may as well just sleep in the car. This story is good to know about those pesky creatures but it is so gross.

  24. Luckily I have not had to deal with bed bugs. From the things stated in the article, I hope I never have too! Thanks for some good tips though.

  25. Bed bugs are gross!!! Thank you for showing us exactly what they look like. You hear about people finding them all the time. It makes me feel better knowing exactly what and where to look for if i stay anywhere on vacation.

  26. Thanks so much for this article. Bed bugs are disgusting! My family and I actually had to change hotels because we found Bugs in the bed.

  27. No bed bugs here but I try to be proactive with pillow cases and keeping things clean because of my son’s dust mite allergy.

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