Bed Bug Travel Protection – How To Put Together An Anti Bed Bug Travel Kit


Before we get into the actual kit, nothing is more important or will replace inspection and prevention.

Check your hotel room carefully, inspect the mattress by puling 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. Check the drawers before putting any clothing in them. On short stays, simply leave your clothing in your luggage which you can place in large garbage bags to prevent bed bugs from migrating into your clothing or hitching a ride in your luggage, back to your home.

Inspection Time: 15 minutes

Now for the kit:

1) Double Sided Masking Tape or Painters Tape.( $10-$12 per 36 yd. roll )

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.

Application Time: 15 minutes

2) Bed Leg Cups: ( $19.00 set of 4 )

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.

Set Up Time: 5 minutes

3) Zippered Travel Sheet / Sleep Sack: ( $49.00 – $99.00 for high quality )

Also a barrier method, a zippered travel sheet will stop bed bugs on the 3 sides that it is sealed. Make sure the travelsheet 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 travelsheet 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.

If you are staying in multiple hotels, just throw the travel sheet into a dryer for an hour or have it laundered by the hotel.

Travel sheets or sleep sacks can also be used to protect against bed bugs on airplane, train or bus seats

Set up Time: 5 -7 minutes

4) Extra Large Garbage Bags: ( $15.00 per 60 x 33 gallon size )

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.

If you travel with your own pillow or travel sheet, these can be kept in bags when not in use and garbage bags are great for dirty laundry or clothing that return home with you. Laundry can go right from the garbage bag into the wash or dryer without risk of infesting your home.

Set Up Time: varies depending on how much stuff you have

5) Diatomaceous Earth: ( optional ) ( $15.00 per 10 lb. bag )

A non-toxic insecticide, DE is a fine talc-like powder made of the crushed exoskeletons of diatoms, tiny sea creatures. The microscopic particles are sharp so when any hard shelled bug walks through DE, it clings to their exoskeletons and wears off the waxy protective layer, the bug will dehydrate and die. Some bed bugs populations have built up a tolerance to DE but on the whole DE is an effective safe deterrent. 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.

Application Time: 10 minutes

6) Mattress and Pillow Encasements: ( optional ) $50.00 and up for queen size high quality )

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.

Encasements are barriers you place around the mattress, box spring or pillow preventing bed bugs that live in the mattress, box spring or pillow from getting out. Encasing the mattress and not the box spring is probably pointless. Encasements are expensive and most don’t wash very well or cannot be dried on high heat. This option is effective for locations where you fully expect to have a bed bug infestation.

Set Up Time: varies depending on size and type of encasement but can be difficult for one person.

7) Bed Bug Sprays: ( optional ) ( $10.00 per 32 oz spray bottle )

THERE ARE NO LONG LASTING, SAFE, BED BUG SPRAYS. If there were, we wouldn’t be 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. Because they are not long lasting, you would have to apply them over and over again to be effective. Don’t bother spending money on any of these unless you are staying in a place where you fully expect to have a bug problem and need something to kill bed bugs or other pests on contact.

Non toxic sprays can be effective for killing bed bugs on airplane, train and bus seats.

What you decide to include in your kit is dependent on the length of your hotel stay, your budget, and your commitment to preventing your blood from being sucked out of you. There’s no reason you can’t enjoy a safe and healthy vacation without being bitten, or worse, without infesting your home on your return.


Source by Jeff Solomon

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