With family and friends traveling and coming together for the holidays, travelers need to keep a sharp eye out for any signs of bed bugs trying to hitchhike a ride with you back home. While being on the lookout for signs of bed bugs, travelers should be aware that bed bugs are also easily transportable so they will end up everywhere and not just in hotels. They can be picked up simply from someone else while traveling in all forms of public transportation. In order to survive, they go wherever they can find food so they will travel from place to place and person to person.
Preparing Your Home for Hosting
There is a lot of work and preparation that goes into hosting the holiday gatherings in your own home. From cooking and cleaning to decorating and creating sleeping arrangements for any overnight guests, bed bugs shouldn’t be on your list to worry about. There are preventative measures you can take to help protect your home and your guests from any hitchhikers that could have been picked up during travel.
1. Keep Luggage and Clothing Away from the Bed(s).
Have a coat hanger on the door of the room or use the front closet to have guests hang up their coats. To further help protect your bed(s) and to keep the possibility of any spreading of bed bugs, you can also use a bed bug mattress encasement on the bed(s). Provide an area away from the bed with a plastic bin or bag that can be tied shut to keep their suitcase in.
2. Cover the Couch
If any of your guests will sleep on the couch, or if you are just worried about keeping the couch clean, you place a sheet or slipcover over the couch. Festive slipcovers not only help protect your couch but also bring a bit of festivity to the room. Then once the guests leave you can pull it off to throw it into the washer and vacuum the couch for extra measure.
3. Fresh and Clean Clothes
If a guest is staying overnight, have them freshen up from their travels and change into clean clothes. As bed bugs are notorious for hitchhiking, they can be picked up from someone else while simply waiting on a train or airplane. Have the washer ready for their arrival so you can launder all their clothing, whether it is worn or not. Bed bugs are a hard topic to approach and some guests may feel offended, but nobody likes laundry so you can offer to do all their laundry without needing to explain the full reason.
Traveling as a Guest
If you are on the other side of the equation and are traveling to stay with friends or family, there are several tips to help you reduce the risk of bringing bed bugs along. Not only can you reduce the risk of coming into contact with bed bugs by inspecting the entire room and keeping luggage away from the bed. You can also help your hosts by washing all your clothes and changing into fresh clothes after you arrive. Realize that since bed bugs are easy to pick up and transport, they might be a concern to your hosts. So ask them what they would like you to do with your luggage and clothes, or even offer to wash your clothes immediately.
Bug-A-Way Has You Covered with Advanced Heat Treatment for Bed Bugs
Have your home prepared to immediately take action when overnight guests arrive to help ease your worries. While bed bugs are preventable, once they have established themselves in your home they are difficult to get rid of without professional help. At Bug-A-Way, our exterminators are professionally trained in specialized heat treatments that eradicate bed bug infestations. Whether you need extermination or just an inspection, our professional teams at Bug-A-Way are ready and happy to help or answer questions. So enjoy the holidays and relax as we anticipate the gatherings of our family and friends, Bug-A-Way has your back.