How to Prevent Bringing Bed Bugs Home

First off, I think there’s a lot of hype around bed bugs because they make for attractive headlines. I’ve stayed in hundreds, if not thousands, of hotels and I haven’t once encountered bed bugs (that I’m aware of). Have you? If yes, please leave a comment below with details on when and where.

Obviously, bed bugs are something to be familiar with, but I wouldn’t spend too much time worrying about them. There are simple ways of limiting your risk. Check your mattresses, and check websites that track bed bug locations like The Bedbug Registry. And take advantage of some new research from behavior expert William Hentley and his colleagues from Britain’s Sheffield University, who “found that bedbugs were twice as likely to go into bags that held clothing that had been worn.”

“In the absence of a human host,  were twice as likely to aggregate on bags containing soiled clothes compared to bags containing clean clothes,” they wrote in their report, published in the journal Scientific Reports .

It’s an interesting report, to be sure. Hentley says that one thing he has learned is that bed bugs cannot climb up the smooth legs of metal luggage racks or other smooth surfaces, and so he’ll be using those racks in the future. He will also probably put his dirty clothes in a sealed plastic bag. Both sound like good ideas and don’t take too much effort.

If you do suspect you have bed bugs in your bag, .



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About the Author

I used to be afraid to fly and at times even leave the house! I conquered my fear (long story) and now I travel to 20+ countries a year sharing my firsthand knowledge, tips and deals with friends, family and readers. Please sign up to our free newsletters and tell your friends!

4 Comments on "How to Prevent Bringing Bed Bugs Home"

  1. There are many bags made for storage of soiled laundry.
    SecureTravel Bed Bug Proof Laundry Bag and Bed Bug Proof Fabric Laundry Bags are both available on Amazon. I had the first and have since purchased the second. I like that one much better and it has a lifetime warranty. The first can contain wet items but I now just use a large zip lock for those, inside the 2nd bag. The only reason I got the second was due to lost luggage. I have 2 of the newer ones, one for my clean items and one for soiled. If you are ever traveling to an “iffy” destination, there is a bed sack that you can place on top of the bed linens, climb into and remain “bug free”. I am currently on my 3rd one. They last about 8 yrs for me.The newer ones are much larger and roomier than the earlier model. I look for the silk ones, make any bed feel more luxurious.

  2. My wife and I travel frequently – often in countries where you cannot be assured that there are not bedbugs. We have never once encountered them. My brother in law brought them home on a trip and infected his mattress, which had to be discarded. Since then we carefully inspect the mattress seams where we stay with good lighting to make sure and the very instant we arrive home we immediately unpack and wash all clothing, both clean and dirty. If very questionable we have stored the empty luggage in a garbage bag with moth balls until the next trip.

  3. A colleague of mine was bitten multiple times a few days ago at the Crowne Plaza at LAX. Do not stay there. It was pretty bad … All over hands arms and legs.

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