Don't Waste Your Money: Check for bedbugs at any hotel - Toledo News Now, News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Don't Waste Your Money: Check for bedbugs at any hotel

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(Toledo News Now) -

Bedbugs are nasty pests that can be a huge hassle to deal with. Your best defense is a good offense, so be sure you know how to do a bedbug inspection when traveling for the holidays.

The holiday travel season is coming and many people will spend time in hotels. Others are already making plans for spring break. There are three things you must do when you check into hotel to avoid checking out with bedbugs.

Martha Kraft, her daughter Cathy and Cathy's two children recently checked into a motel, unaware that some other visitors were already there.

"I started itching all over," said Kraft.

It wasn't until they turned the room light on that they discovered there were bedbugs everywhere.

"I woke up in the night to feed the baby and had them actually crawling on me," said Cathy.

Thousands of hotel guests are bitten by bedbugs every year in all 50 states.

"They definitely need to inspect before they unpack or make themselves comfortable in a room," said Kurt Scherzinger, a manager at a pest control company.

Scherzinger had three tips for people staying at any hotel, resort or even guest house.

1)    Never lay your suitcase on the carpet by the bed, where bugs can be waiting. Instead, set it on a table or the luggage rack.

2)    Inspect all beds, paying specially attention to the white border around the mattress. Bedbugs are very small and look like a tiny apple seed.
"You're looking for the bugs, or for a reddish-brown stain, which is the fecal matter of the bug itself," Scherzinger said.

3)    Check around headboards, behind the nightstand and in the dresser.
"I would definitely do a thorough inspection of the dresser drawers and nightstand before you unpack a bag into the dressers," he said.

If you suspect bugs, he says demand another room immediately. When you get home, wash all clothing in hot water and dry for 30 minutes in a hot dryer. Put shoes and suitcases outside in black plastic bags: the hot sun will kill the bugs.

Kraft and her family are still dealing with itchy bug bites. She said it took about four months to get rid of them.

Remember: Bedbugs have been reported even at pricey five-star resorts, so there's no reason to let your guard down just because a hotel is newer or nicer. That way you are safe and you don't waste your money.

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