Tips to Prevent Bringing Bed Bugs Home This Holiday Season

The holidays are full of fun and festive events, parties, shopping, and visits from out-of-town friends and relatives. With all the excitement, it can be easy to overlook the potential for small, uninvited bed bugs to take up residence within your warm and cozy home. Bed bugs do not hibernate or go dormant just because it is winter and can thrive even in colder temperatures.

Bed bugs can be brought into the home on winter coats, jackets, boots, backpacks, purses, and suitcases. Bed bugs are not limited to dirty homes and run down motels. Bed bugs are quite common in upscale hotels, shopping centres, movie theatres, and other public areas. They can even be found in buses, taxis, and other forms of public transportation.

The last thing you want is for your holidays to be ruined by bed bugs. Fortunately, there are several things you can do to prevent brining these pests into your home.

  • Suitcases: Whenever you stay at a place where people come and go such as a hotel, never put your suitcase and purse on top of the bed. Instead, Keep the suitcase and other large bags as far away from the bed as possible.
  • Clothes: Keep clothes (clean and dirty as well as the night suits) away from the beds at other spots in the room.
  • Washroom and the desk table are safer than the beds.
  • The night clothes and dirty laundry is safer to be put away sealed in disposable bags.
  • Inspect: Have a decent light available and have a quick look for any black spots in thr sturdiest spots in the beds. The black dots would be extruding if on a non-absorbant surface and in a fabric they could appear somewhat like ink bursted into the fibers of the fabric. For an inexperienced eye it is hard to tell what could be scuff mark, stain or rust marks or bed bug excrement but if you find more than 2 suspected marks, engage the management.
  • You could continue on looking for further signs. You may come across seeing live Bed Bugs hiding in cracks, gaps, slits and holes in and around the bed frame.
  • When packing and leaving, seal dirty clothes in a disposable bag alongwith any other clothes and articles left on the bed for more than a few seconds.
  • When returning home, leave the suitcase as far from bed rooms and living rooms as possible. Garage and laundry rooms are better spots, usually.
  • Unpack, sort and clean and wash items accordingly. Do it on clean hard floor surfaces where a small insect can be noticed easily. Avoid carpets with long fibers.
  • It is recommended that suitcases are never brought to the bed room if at all. Keep them stored in basement, etc.

In the picture above, it is well established Bed Bug infestation. Keep in mind in typical lighting conditions it can be easily overlooked. So a good light and patience is the key to making your efforts worthwhile.

One Adult Bed Bug and some excrements

In the picture above, it is black marks that would be among the first signs of Bed Bug presence 🔆.