04/21/2014 12:42 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Don't Let the Bed Bugs Bite

Yes, they do exist! Reality check: Whether you are in a hotel, a hostel, a train or a cruise ship, the place might be crawling with these little critters!

But don't freak out! The idea is not to spend your travels looking like this:


The last thing you want to be doing on your relaxing vacation is to be on the hunt for bugs! So I am here to tell you how to, not only how to prevent them from disturbing your trip, but most importantly, how to prevent them from coming home with you!

Trust me, I have learned from experienced that bringing bed bugs home with you is both excruciating and expensive! Here is what you do:

1. Check everything

If you have suspicions or wake up with little red bites on your back, check everything! The mattress, the box spring, the seams of the mattress, the headboard, the painting hanging above, the pillow, everything!

Bed bugs are visible to the naked eye, but if you do see them, don't freak out. Their bites just itch, that's about the extent of it.

2. Bed Bug Spray

Pack a travel-sized bed bug spray:


Look for something that is non-toxic, preferably something herbal or enzyme-based. Spray it where you sleep, where you sit and around your luggage.

3. Protect Your Suitcase

Your suitcase is a cruise ship for these guys. Do not keep your suitcase on the floor or close to the bed. Instead, elevate it on a suitcase rack or even on a table.

Also, do not lay your clothes randomly on the bed and then put them back in your suitcase! If you do, make sure you place your clothes into a Ziploc bag.

You can even get a suitcase bed bug liner!


Just place your clothes inside and keep it zipped up!

Another idea is to isolate your entire suitcase with large garbage bags:


This is the cheaper option.

If none of these ideas work for you, you can always get a plastic suitcase protector:


4. Anti-Bed Bug Gadgets

Gadget geeks, listen up! There are even gadgets you can use to spot these guys and better prevent them.

Ultraviolet flashlights illuminate spots of blood or carcusses of bugs. Some flashlights even come with a magnifying glass.




2014-04-18-laundry.jpg a dissolvable laundry bag! Just put your clothes in the bag and put the entire bag in the washing machine. Magic!

Also, bed bugs cannot survive between the temperatures of 117-120 degrees F. That's why there are huge contraptions that fit over your suitcase and heat it up with everything inside!

Bed bugs should never keep you from going anywhere! The important thing is to just prevent, prevent, prevent!

All Pictures Courtesy of Mariana Hellmund