by Loren G. Edelstein | April 01, 2016

M&C's April 2016 research took a fresh look at concerns about bedbugs at hotels and infestations at meetings. Following are additional comments from respondents. 

If you experienced bedbugs at a meeting, how did you handle the issue?

• Fortunately, it was isolated and only involved one guest. We advised him how he should deal with his clothes and luggage and brought it up with the hotel.

• I was personally bit by bedbugs and conveyed it to the hotel. I didn't immediately realize it as it took a day for the welts to start appearing.

• We had to cancel.

• Hotel had pest service inspect each reported incidence.

• Reported it to hotel and asked for relocation from rooms infested.

• Powder

• Let the front desk and convention services know.

• Expressed dissatisfaction at the front desk and made sure the attendee was compensated from the hotel.

• Room block was changed to a different floor. 

• It was in one member's room and the hotel handled it very professionally. We still use them.

• Added formal language to contract addenda with specific areas for compensation and remediation.

• I worked with the hotel's director of operations to ensure that all rooms occupied by my guests that surrounded the room with bedbugs were inspected for infestation.

• We had to move attendees to another property.

• I (the meeting planner) was the only one affected, thankfully.

• Attendees got relocated and people got frustrated.


What other precautions do you take when you stay overnight in a hotel? 


• Don't use the dresser drawers.

• Carry bedbug killing spray and pillow cover. Also, when arriving home, all clothing goes immediately in the dryer!

• Rigorously check the room. It does affect my hotel enjoyment as I limit my time in the room, fastidiously keep used clothes in bin liners and keep everything in the bathroom. We search, but how honest is a salesperson really going to be during the process, especially since instances are not related to cleanliness or service and can be very isolated and are rarely mass infestations affecting entire floors or hotels.

• Keep my luggage off the floor and off the bed or couch. I usually use the folding luggage stand or top of the dresser to keep it off the floor.

• Check behind pictures on the walls, curtains, bedframes and other places bedbugs commonly could be found.

• I inspect the room(s) till they show no evidence of cockroaches, bedbugs or other. I will not sleep in a room that is infested. I check under the bedding, between the mattress even after I go through questioning the front desk. We do not want to bring this crap home.

• Advise attendees not to store anything on the floor.

• Spray the bed.

• Meeting planners should have the rooms cleared by a bedbug K-9. An expert on this issue who has wonderfully trained K-9s is Ashley Marratt, president of Interquest Detection Canines of Georgia, based in Atlanta. She has some great stories and experiences in this area. 

• I bring a HUGE light in my suitcase. I look everywhere for bedbugs.

• Get an extra flat sheet from housekeeping, folded several thicknesses, for when I need to do my floor stretches.

• I NEVER store anything on the floors in hotels. EVER! I utilize the hangers and coat racks, too.

• Check the luggage rack, behind the bed.

• Check bedbug registries and do a Google search of hotel name and the word bedbug.

• Examine the pleats in the bed skirt if applicable and run a card around the headboard and inspect for any traces of blood.

• Always use luggage rack. Never use dresser/drawers to store clothing!