View How To Look For And Avoid Bed Bugs In Hotel, Or Motel Rooms?
Before we get into the actual kit, nothing is more important or will replace inspection and prevention. Inspection Time: 15 minutes.
Check your hotel room carefully, inspect the mattress by pulling back the sheets and mattress protector and checking for reddish dark brown spots, dead bed bugs or live ones. Check the headboard and in back of the headboard if possible. Check behind any paintings on the wall of the bed as well as at the floor base boards at the head of the bed.
Don't put your luggage on the carpet or the bed. It's best to leave your luggage in the shower stall or bathtub until you have inspected your room.
Now for the kit:
1) Double Sided Masking Tape or Painters Tape - Application Time 15 minutes:
This is a barrier method and contains no chemicals. Any bed bug crawling over the tape on the way to you will get stuck, like fly paper. Apply tape around the edge of the headboard to stop bed bugs crawling from behind the headboard onto the bed. Wrap the tape completely around the box spring or mattress. Try to apply the tape as low as possible to prevent bed bugs from climbing up the blanket over-hanging the bed. Make sure to wrap above, not on, a dust ruffle or bed skirt and make sure the tape is in contact with the sheets, any void will allow bed bugs to enter. Wrap the bed legs if you don't use the next item on the list. Be careful if you use a high tack tape on hard surfaces as this could stick to or damage the finish. Before you check out, just pull the tape off and throw it out.
2) Bed Leg Cups - Set Up Time 5 minutes:
This is also a barrier method. These cups fit under the bed legs and prevent bed bugs from climbing up into the bed from the carpet. The cups are lined with talc making the surface too slippery for the bed bugs to climb.
3) Zippered Travel Sheet / Sleep Sack - Set up Time 5 -7 minutes:
Also a barrier method, a zippered travel sheet will stop bed bugs on the 3 sides that it is sealed. Make sure the travel sheet you choose is zippered and sealed all the way around. A travel sheet that closes with velcro, ties or buttons will do you no good. Any travel sheet you buy should be washable, but more importantly, dryable in high heat. Only high heat will sanitize your travel sheet by killing any bed bugs or bed bug eggs, preventing you from bringing them back to your home.
A travel sheet has the added benefit of protecting you from other travel bedding ills like dust mite allergens, scabies, harsh detergents and unclean sheets, blankets and pillows.
4) Extra Large Garbage Bags - Set Up Time: varies depending on how much stuff you have:
As a safe barrier method, large, heavy duty garbage bags are cheap, easy to pack and very effective. Garbage bags are bed bug proof, anything you put in a garbage bag will be impervious to bed bugs providing you seal them well and make sure there is no way the bed bugs can enter. Any clothing can be put in smaller kitchen-catcher type bags and then placed in the drawer. At all times, luggage should be kept in a bag to prevent bed bugs from hiding in the many compartments, cracks and crevices that exist in all luggage; hard or soft.
5) Diatomaceous Earth - optional - Application Time: 10 minutes:
A non-toxic insecticide, DE is a fine talc-like powder made of the crushed exoskeletons of diatoms, tiny sea creatures. Make sure you use only food grade DE, any other kind is not safe for you, kids or pets. Apply DE around the base boards of the room particularly near the bed and in the bed frame if possible.
DE use is not for 1 or 2 night stays. it take time for it to work. If you are staying in one place for a week or two then it would be practical.
6) Mattress and Pillow Encasements - optional - Set Up Time varies depending on size and type of encasement but can be difficult for one person:
You need to be pretty committed to use these on a vacation. Again, for short stays they are expensive and impractical but if you are staying for a week or two or more an encasement can be very effective.
7) Bed Bug Sprays - ( optional ):
THERE ARE NO LONG LASTING, SAFE, BED BUG SPRAYS. If there were, we wouldn't have an infestation problem. Most sprays will kill on contact and might repel bed bugs for up to 30 minutes, but in a hotel, that just won't cut it.