Travel Tips at Hotels in Canada and the US
When you are travelling in US or Canada you have to know that there are some risks when you check in to a hotel or a hostel. North America is a problem, and it’s not what you’d expect. Bed bugs, the tiny blood-sucking insects, are making a comeback in a huge way. Whether you’re staying in a luxury hotel, or a cheap motel, you’re equally susceptible to been bitten – and worse – taking these pests back home with you. These aren’t like ticks or fleas: these bugs are resilient, breed incredibly fast, and can destroy your home, furniture and sanity. Now is the time to learn about how you can prevent the spread of these pests while travelling, and make sure you don’t have a hitchhiker coming with you back home.
Tip 1: Read online guides and reviews
Let’s all take a moment to be thankful for the internet. Websites like TripAdvisor, Expedia, and the Bed Bug Registry give us access to user-submitted reviews for any hotel, apartment or condo in Canada and the US. It’s extremely important before buying a hotel that you check these resources. Poor management, unhygienic standards, and careless staff can all be avoided now that we can search for reviews. If anyone in the last 2 years has mentioned bed bugs in a hotel, that’s your queue to find a new place to stay. Bed bugs can lay dormant for up to a year without food, and even the most thorough extermination job doesn’t always kill them all.
Tip 2: Check the mattress
Bed bugs (obviously) love staying in the mattress and box spring of hotel beds. Since it’s close to their prey (you), it’s the ideal location. Warm, plenty of crevices to hide in, and dark. Pull back the sheet of your bed and check inside all of the seams for signs of bugs. Inside of the pillows, check the zipper seam. If you find any signs of an insect, contact the management immediately and find a new room. The hotel manager will either find you a new room while the treat the infested one, or refund you your money to find somewhere else to stay.
Tip 3: Stay outside of major cities
Toronto, Vancouver, Cincinnati, and Columbus are all cities known for their bed bug problems. Staying on the outskirts of the city, or in low-traffic areas, means that you’ll have less of a chance of encountering an infested building. Bed bugs are great hitchhikers, so the more traffic that goes through a building, the better chance there is of bugs. Yuck.
Tip 4: Wash your clothing!
Before you leave, if you hotel offers laundry service, be sure to indulge. Washing your clothing, and drying, on high heat is generally enough to kill bed bugs. That means that even if they found their way on to your clothing, they’ll be exterminated. This doesn’t prevent them from hopping in your purse or luggage, but it’s a great idea nonetheless.