Bed bugs are hitchhikers. They will crawl mainly into our suitcases, ruck sacks and handbags when we are in areas with an infestation. This could be a hotel, care home, family or friends home or public transport.
Female bed bugs will try to escape male bed bugs. When we put our items down that do not smell like bed bugs, a female bed bug may crawl into our belongings.
Once we reach our next destination, whether that be our home or the next place we are visiting, the bed bug or bed bugs will crawl out in search of a better living environment.
Bed bugs prefer small crack and crevices mainly in wood (but they will live anywhere!). In these areas they will then lay their eggs and hide until they are due there next feed.
If you are traveling to a hotel, holiday resort or short term rented accommodation the best thing to do is to leave your belongings in the bath or shower tray. As we do not sleep or relax for long periods of time in these areas, bed bugs are not normally present.
Another option if you are frequently visiting places that could be high risk of bed bug infestations, is to put a plastic box by the front door of your home. Put your hand bag or ruck sack in this box once you are home and take out the things you need. As the plastic box is a contained area, if there are bed bugs in your items the bugs will be able to go no further than the plastic box.
If you are travelling with larger items that you think might have bed bugs in, the best option is to put your suitcases in the bath once you are home. The edges of a bath are high and difficult to climb.