Here’s a sure-fire way to spot bed bugs in your hotel room

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Good night,

sleep tight,

don’t let the bed bugs bite.

But how do you know if they’re in your hotel room?

Bed bugs are a nightmare that aren’t necessarily restricted to low-budget hotels, hostels or dorms. From five-star stays and back-alley bedsits to cruise ships and cross-country trains, bed bugs don’t discriminate. They’re mainly found throughout the US, UK, Australia and Canada, as well as in other developed and developing countries. And although they’ll cause you to itch and scratch like a cat with fleas, worse still, is bringing them back home with you.

So, how do you spot them?

Well, as soon as you arrive at your room, place your bags in the bathroom (bed bugs love luggage). Don’t place them on that fancy fold-out luggage rack, because the little critters can stick around even after an infested bag has left the building. Bathrooms are the best sanctuary from bed bugs because they can’t hide on smooth, tiled surfaces.

Now, launch the flashlight app on your phone and rip back all the sheets on your bed until you see the bare mattress. Check the seams and all four corners of the bed, as well as the base and bed head.

signs of bed bugs

Even though you’re looking for the actual bugs, the signs of their existence are the real giveaway. If you see small, dark spots on your bed, you’re looking at bed bug excrement. So, after you’ve gagged a little bit, hold on to your lunch, then check all furniture, curtains and behind framed artwork. If you see bugs or dark red spots, call reception and ask for a room change – preferably one on a different floor or at least far away from the room you were just occupying. Then start the process over again.

Once you return home, wash all of your clothes in hot water and vacuum your suitcase. Then, in case you missed any creepy crawlies, store it in a large, sealed, plastic bag. 


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Written by Leon Della Bosca

Leon Della Bosca is a voracious reader who loves words. You'll often find him spending time in galleries, writing, designing, painting, drawing, or photographing and documenting street art. He has a publishing and graphic design background and loves movies and music, but then, who doesn’t?



Total Comments: 9
  1. 0

    Good blog Leon. Bedbugs turn me off and that is the first thought whenever we check in to any place we have never been before.

  2. 0

    I just spray everything (and anyone) with insecticide including the bottom sheet whilst on the bed, and especially when I get home.

  3. 0

    UGH! this is enough to put me off travelling !

  4. 0

    It has put me off travelling for years UNLESS I went in my own caravan — I am over using up my time away checking everything for bed bugs.
    It all got so much worse after the Olympics were held in Sydney

  5. 0

    I take some Vit B complex and bed bugs, moosies etc don’t like the smell of me so don’t bite me.

    • 0

      That only works for some people Bonny and it has to be taken for at least 3 months b4 it works — I know because I got eaten badly by sand flies and went through hell for a month

  6. 0

    After the Olympics the bed bugs were said to be far worse — and now I choose to never stay in a Motel ever again — I found it much too much hard work washing all the cups etc spraying the bathroom with detol and checking the bed AND remaking it and having to wear thongs in the shower and everywhere even on the carpets — and when the hell was that doona cover last washed?



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