Well, I just returned from a relaxing vacation in Ocean City and I felt compelled to tell the world about the first thing I did upon arrival in our suite. I looked high and low for bed bugs and roaches. As you may or may not know one of the most common places to pick up insects is at hotels. The reason, communal living and roaches and bed bugs are the best hitchhikers the world has ever known. The more people that are put under one roof, the greater the possibility of insect infestation. This is especially true for the aforementioned pests.
Now this may sound crazy , but I am a fanatic (almost obsessive) about bringing things into my home. I have not slept in a hotel in the past 16 years w/ out doing a complete inspection PRIOR to bringing my bags into the room. In another article I will go over the biology of these pests, but here is how you can do a quick inspection on your own PRIOR to bringing your bags into the room.
In general these techniques will suffice for both bed bugs and german roaches:
1. Strip the bed to the mattress and look for blood stains and or black pepper looking spots at the bed tufts.
2. Look for live insects at the metal frame, box spring and head board.
3. Remove the drawers from the nightstand and check for pepper stains at the 90 degree angles in the drawer and the stand itself, flip it upside down if you must.
4. Get on your hands and knees and look for dead insects under the bed and furniture.
5. Inspect the large dresser the same way as the night stand.
6. If the room has a kitchen, pull out the fridge and look under the sink for dead insects, pepper stains at the corners etc.
7. Do the same in the bathroom.
*There is no guarantee that even with this inspection that you will find everything every time, but think of how much better you will feel.
* For the record, the pepper stains are obviously not pepper, but blood and or fecal spots from roaches/bed bugs.
Luckily, I didn’t find a single insect. I feel comfortable telling you the hotel was The Carousel in Ocean City, MD. I’m sure they have had or will have pests at some point in the future, but for 5 years straight I have yet to find anything (believe me, I look). On a side note this hotel is great for families, especially with small kids. I can be contacted at email@example.com for more comments about The Carousel. It’s outside bar is the best on the strip!!!
Happy bug hunting on your next vacation. Please, take my advice about the inspection I have met too many people who have picked up insects at hotels. I don’t want you to be the next.
If you need help with a pest problem I can be reached at 203-879-6481