More bed bug sightings are reported by hotel, inn, and motel guests than any other group. These commercial establishments operate revolving doors, with guests continuously coming and going. When you consider this fact, it makes sense for them to draw bed bugs. It is unfortunate that guests are not aware of the outgoing bed bug problems hotels face. On a daily basis, hotels are receiving reports of bed bug sightings from both their guests and employees.
Knowledge is key to avoiding bed bugs when staying in hotels. In addition to knowledge, guests can perform an assessment to ensure their rooms are bed bug-free. Do not fret, this is not a timely process, nor does it require any special equipment or tools. You just need to make it a habit before entering your room to perform the S.L.E.E.P. assessment.
Survey Before Entering
From the doorway, gradually survey the room. Do not step forward until the entire room has been assessed. Surveying from the doorway will not help you determine if the room is truly infested with bed bugs. However, it will give you an idea if the room has been thoroughly cleaned.
During the survey, carefully look at the floor and furniture for signs of dust and grim. Ask yourself, has the bed linen been changed, the carpet vacuumed, the furniture dusted, and the drapery cleaned. If the room passes the survey, only then should you proceed to the next step.
Lift Items And Look At Them Carefully
Leaving your luggage by the door, move throughout the room. Lift all movable items and look underneath them. It is recommended to start with the décor, including the desk lamp, floor lamp, art frames, and digital clock. If all the decorative pieces check out, move on to the bathroom décor. From here, move to the bed linen, drapery, and underneath the bed.
If the room appears to have been poorly cleaned, do not hesitate to contact guest services. This could be a sign of things to come if not very careful.
Elevate Above The Floor
This step entails inspecting items at eye level. Anything sitting on the floor should be elevated and carefully inspected. Look at the area where the item was sitting before replacing it
Examine Luggage Before Leaving
While the room may pass the inspection, it does not necessarily mean there are no bed bugs living there. When there are only a few bed bugs, they may not be noticed. The hours before you are scheduled to check out of the room for the last time, you should carefully check your luggage. Bed bugs are notorious for traveling in luggage, overnight bags, handbags, briefcases, and backpacks. Unless you want to be left dealing with a bed bug infestation in your home several weeks down the road, do the examination.
Do not dumb the items onto the bed. Instead, remove one item at a time to carefully examine it. Look for signs of bed bugs:
- Dried blood on your clothing
- Black fecal matter on your clothing
- A foul musky odor
- Live bed bugs
- Translucent bed bug larvae
Place Clothing In Drier
As a precautionary measure, place your clothing in the guest drier for at least 20 minutes. Any live bed bugs will not survive the extreme heat generated by driers.
Do not return your luggage to the room, instead transport it to your vehicle. This will protect your clothing and other personal items from coming into contact with bed bugs.
Taking the extra step to keep yourself and your assets free of bed bugs will pay off in the long run.