How I checked my hotel room (with photos)(12 posts)
Just returned back home after PCO came for round three of Phantom spraying. In another post I explained why I didn't stay in my home after the spraying. We went to a hotel in the area and here's how I handled it.
Here's a picture of my hotel room. There are two of the exact same beds as well as some pretty big headboards. http://www.flickr.com/photos/76529997@N07/6934262293/
So I started deconstructing the room. I'm shocked how long this took. Granted I'm not a professional like David Cain, Paul Bello or KillerQueen but this was a ton of work. http://www.flickr.com/photos/76529997@N07/6934267083/
I literally went right to the floor on both beds. I remember watching David Cain's hotel room video and was surprised at the "extra" stuff he found in places that are never cleaned. It was very dirty at floor level. http://www.flickr.com/photos/76529997@N07/6788158734/
Both of the boxsprings had tears in them. This made it difficult to see inside although most of the lining was in tact. http://www.flickr.com/photos/76529997@N07/6934276629/
The next step, looking behind the headboards, was something I was not looking forward to. Ironically I now have a new skill as I learned the secret of removing them. I had lots of tools just in case.
I guess you could call this the danger zone. Thankfully I didn't see any signs. This is behind the headboard. http://www.flickr.com/photos/76529997@N07/6934284293/
This is the other boxspring. Obviously there is a tear (not happy)
Bed and boxspring next to the wall.
So as far as I can tell neither of us were bitten. I'm very thankful for that. I searched all other parts of the room as well. I have to admit it was tough. Not sure if it's worth it unless I HAVE to be in a hotel. It's a lot of pressure. I've come to the conclusion that (for me) the worst part is sleeping. When I'm awake I'll fight an army of BBs with my bare hands (sorry, that was a temporary moment of anger, lol). When I'm sleeping it's as if you're defenseless. My second biggest concern is trying HARD not to bring any monsters home. A home that smells like there is pesticide all of the place (as there is).
Wow. That's thorough!
I search hotel rooms, but not to the degree you did. I have to be honest, I really would not go to that much trouble.
I removed a headboard in a Budget Inn once-- the first time I ever searched a room. And I could not get it back on!
My sense is that one can never be 100% certain of seeing evidence if it's there, no matter how thorough the search.
So instead of turning the room completely upside down, I do a more limited search with the understanding that I am trying to avoid being in a room with an obvious case. I figure if I can't find any signs in five or ten minutes of searching, then I won't have one of those National Geographic/ horror show bed bug encounters.
Meanwhile, I also take additional precautions (like sealing luggage or Packtiting when I get home) to avoid bringing home hitchhikers.
Anyway, I am not suggesting you should do anything differently, just sharing my own perspective.
Believe me I didn't want to do so much work. I really didn't. I've read about the mistakes that some people have made and try to learn from them. I don't know if I am truly getting my BB problem under control but I don't want to make it worse by bringing any home. For the immediate future I don't want to go into hotels at all although I may beheading west for a couple of weeks sometime soon. David Cain's video was an influence on me. What you didn't see were pictures in the hotel of several large zip locks and my suitcase encased.
I appreciate your perspective. You have a TON more knowledge and experience than I do. I'm just very drained and decided to do just about anything needed. If you saw how much caulking I've already done in my home you might be surprised.
i think it's better to just sleep in the car if it is one or two nights.... it's not worth it
Yes I can see you have been thorough and I am sure you would have detected anything had it been there.
The reason why I advocate a quicker and less thorough search is a simple one. The change of you taking a problem home with you is related to the size of the infestation at the exposure site. It is highly unlikely that a single or even a couple of bedbugs will decide to up sticks are come home with you during a short stay/
Therefore a quick search would reveal a large infestation where there is a high risk of transfer home.
Yes sadly when you start looking at the world to this level you start to see that maybe its not as clean as you would expect although its not always in the "bonus" reading material way that I found in Chicago. On my travels I have found many things in rooms which the staff were amazed I found and on a recent trip I found something the drugs squad were amazed at tucked into a headboard of a bed.
I am not a fan of sleep in the car approach to managing this risk as you need quality rest time to remain functional as a person. Its all about managing the risks and getting on with you life as best as possible.
Bed Bugs Limited
I tend to do as Nobugs does. While I don't want to be bitten, I am more concerned with bringing them home. If I didn't have a Packtite (actually I have 2, one of each kind) then I'm sure I would try to go to the extremes you did! I also know that everything is going into the Packtite when I get home, so even if I don't find anything, I am still going to Packtite. It's a lot of work, and probably a lot of it is unnecessary, but I'd rather do more work and not get them, than to have to do all the prep work if you do get them.
Can someone post a link to this video from David cain? I'm staying at a hotel at the end of the month and could use some pointers.. Already been having nightmares about it night after night (wish i was kidding ): )
Congratulations on a job well done ! If you decide on a career change I'm sure there are folks looking to add a dedicated bed bug fighter to their team.
As NB, DC and others have mentioned above your hotel room inspection was more thorough than what most others would have done however, if this is what it takes to grant you peace of mind for a good night's sleep then so be it.
On the other hand, your photos do document that you were thorough, knew where to look and what to look for. Perhaps the largest disadvantage that you may face is the confidence that comes along with experience. However, you now have this thorough hotel room inspection "under your belt" and hopefully this serves to boost your confidence as well.
Generally, I limit my own hotel room inspections to mattress, box spring and head board. In my expereience the head board is the primary location in hotels. And, in my years of travel since BBs became an issue I'v yet to find them in one of my rooms however, folks I've traveled with have. Perhaps I've been lucky or perhaps I may hae missed seeing some in the past?
Even after a long day and checking in sometimes after 8 PM at times I find myself forcing myself to do the inspection routine. It's important and one of the thoughts that helps me to make sure I do it is KQ's story from his Orlando trip. Actually, as i type this post I'm in such a room in Gadsden, AL. It's a huge king head board that was difficult to move. And, as NB mentioned I have had one that I could not actually put back into the "exact" position so "good enough" came into play there.
Thanks for posting your photos and details as inspiration and guidance to others.
Hope your bed bug woes are soon behind you ! paul b.
I added the vimeo link to your video so people can watch it here.
Simply pasting vimeo or YouTube links in makes them embed (though with YouTube you have to use the LONG link option, rather than default link) -- which is nice if people don't want to leave the site right now.
The video above by David Cain was what I used as a guide to pretty much deconstruct my hotel room. Excellent information!
For anyone seeking David's video out later, it's also in the Travel FAQs on this site (along with lots of other great resources like the NYSIPM travel card) -- this one:
You must log in to post.