This is a sponsored post written on behalf of Orkin Pest Control. All opinions are my own.
When I am traveling by myself or with my family, I have a settling-in routine that helps me relax and sleep easy at the hotel. Check out my tips on how to relax while traveling.
When I first get to the hotel, I place my bags on the bathroom counter or on the luggage rack. You should always elevate your luggage and your purses while traveling. Keep your suitcase off the floor and away from the bed and make sure to pull the luggage rack away from the wall.
Before I unpack at the hotel, I check the room to make sure that it is clean and does not have any bed bugs. This is the best way to ensure that I can relax while traveling. According to Orkin Pest Control, bed bugs are not a cleanliness issue. They can be found at the finest hotel or home – from a one-star to a five-star location. Scary, right?!
How to Check for Bed Bugs
You can reduce your chances of unknowingly staying in a hotel room infested by bed bugs (and even worse – bringing them home with you) by checking the room when you arrive. Here is how I check to make sure there are no bed bugs in my hotel room:
First, smell the room. Bed bugs can create a musty, sweet odor, like soda pop syrup. Walk around and see if you notice this odor.
Lift and Look
Bed bugs tend to hide close to where people sleep. During the day, bed bugs sleep in crevices of mattresses, box springs, sheets, furniture, upholstery and hollow bedposts, as well as crevices behind baseboards, pictures and even torn wallpaper. Make sure to lift and look around all possible hiding spots for bed bugs in the hotel room, not just the mattress.
Use a UV Flashlight
You are mainly looking for small black or brown spots. These signs can be dead bed bug casings, live insects, or droppings. I like to bring this UV flashlight to check for bed bugs as it makes them easier to see. You can search for and find bed bugs without the light, but it is always good to have one on hand. You can also use your cell phone’s flashlight to help with your inspection.
Always keep your luggage and purses elevated, even after your inspection. Don’t put your bags on the bed or the floor.
How to Identify Bed Bugs
Bed bugs are flat, reddish-brown, oval insects up to 4 to 5 mm long or the size of an apple seed.
Look for signs of a bed bug infestation:
- Seeing the bugs: Adult bed bugs are about the shape and size of an apple seed.
- Case skins: As the bugs grow, they shed their skins, which can indicate their presence.
- Defecation (bed bug droppings): After feeding, bed bugs return to their hiding spots where they defecate black to brown stains on porous surfaces or black to brown mounds on nonporous surfaces.
- Bites also may indicate bed bug activity, but further signs will need to be found, since other sources can cause red welts on the skin.
Charge Your Devices
In order for me to relax and not stress out once I leave the hotel, I like to charge all my devices right away so that I can have the most charge possible. I don’t want to be stuck out somewhere with a dead phone.
Make Yourself a Drink
After I check the coffee maker, I like to make myself a cup of coffee or tea to relax and settle into my hotel. I like to look out the window or sit on the balcony to take in my surroundings. Sometimes, I will listen to an audiobook during this time too. I love a good audiobook!!
Diffuse Essential Oils
I also like to diffuse relaxing essential oils in my hotel room. If I have enough space in my luggage, I bring the full-size diffuser, but if space is limited I will bring a small battery powered diffuser. Lavender oil is a great choice because it helps with relaxation and smells wonderful.
Before you start packing up to head home, examine your luggage to ensure you haven’t picked up any unwelcome visitors.
Unpacking At Home
Bed bugs are hitchhikers, so be sure to check your luggage and clothing for bed bugs before bringing luggage back into the bedroom at home. Orkin Pest Control recommends that you place your clothes in the dryer on high heat for at least 15 minutes immediately after taking it out of the luggage.
If you think you might have a bed bug infestation, contact a licensed pest control provider immediately. Bed bugs can multiply quickly, so early detection is critical to help prevent an even larger infestation. Learn more about how to avoid bed bugs and how Orkin Pest Control can help you get rid of them if your own inspections don’t keep the bed bugs from biting. To reach your local Orkin Pest Control branch, call 877-284-7429.