Telltale Signs Of A Bed Bug Infestation In Your Hotel
The hospitality industry has seen a lot of changes over the decades, but one thing remains a foundation principle even in the 21st century; your reputation is everything. It’s worth mentioning that the way a reputation is maintained has changed in the digital era with social media, user reviews, and websites that professionally review and document hotel experiences accessible to readers all over the world.
For hotels, this means that it’s easier than ever for consumers to educate and inform themselves about the merit of a hotel. It also means that consistent negative reports — such as bed bug sightings — can quickly come to the public’s attention in a way they never could in a pre-digital era.
This means that hotels absolutely must be on the lookout for bed bugs in rooms. Without diligent inspections, the first indications staff will have about bed bugs will be from guests reporting both at the front desk and online. There are a handful of telltale signs to watch for that may indicate the presence of bed bugs in the hotel.
Bed bugs are both nocturnal and lazy. They aren’t as active in the day, and prefer to take shelter within about 20 feet of their food source, which is probably you. They feed on the blood of mammals, and usually only come out when people go to bed. Mattresses and bed frames, or nearby furniture are ideal shelters for bed bugs.
Sometimes detecting the presence of bed bugs is as easy as lifting the pillows to check the sheets for blood stains. When sheets have been changed, thoroughly inspect the mattress itself. Look at the box springs, seams, and the piping that runs along the mattress. Small blood stains are the result of bed bugs feeding. Tiny black marks that resemble pepper or mold are the droppings of bed bugs. The bed bugs themselves are about one quarter inch in length and brown in color or mahogany red after they’ve fed.
Headboards And Furniture Drawers
The headboard of the bed itself is another favored shelter of bed bugs. Headboards should be routinely moved and inspected to look for excrement, blood stains, or bed bugs. The bugs themselves will try to hide in the most inaccessible portions of the board. When moving the headboard, check the area quickly with a flashlight, as bed bugs are nearly as mobile as ants and will scurry to more shelter once they detect a disturbance.
Bed bugs will also hide in the nightstands next to the bed because the proximity grants easy access to their food source. Removing the drawers and checking with a flashlight in the corners and interior of nightstands or other nearby pieces of furniture may also yield the presence of tiny blood stains, the small pepper-like excrement, or the discarded skin of bed bugs, if not actual bed bugs.
Bed bug infestations have become a growing concern with many hotel guests in recent years. In many cases, guests will conduct their own search of a room, taking precautions like placing their luggage in the bath tub and inspecting the same areas that diligent staff should also be examining. The last thing any traveler wants is for bed bugs to hitch a ride home in their luggage.
Make every effort to ensure that staff bed bug inspections are just as thorough — if not more thorough — than the searches a guest will conduct. You don’t want to find out your hotel has bed bugs through an angry online review submitted by a guest more diligent about room sanitation than your own staff.
Got a bed bug problem? A professional company can help create tailor-made plans for eliminating bed bugs from your hotel. Or any business, really. Protect your reputation today by requesting a free commercial consultation with JP Pest Services! Our trained, experienced professionals will safely and completely eliminate bed bugs from your business.