Living With Bed Bugs

As people prepare to travel this Fourth of July weekend, concerns about bed bugs creep into mind. I will confess, on my last stay at a hotel, I did lift up the mattress and check under the sheets for any tell tale spots of blood that might indicate bed bugs. How can the naive consumer know where not to stay?

One attempt at providing information to consumers is The Bedbug Registry. This website allows consumers to report encounters with bed bugs in their stay at hotels (and coming soon: Cruise Ships). This is an interesting attempt, but can it provide accurate and up to date information?

The site allows customers to enter details about the establishment and bed bug encounters. However, this requires all the people who post information to report honestly. There is no way to stop competitor hotels from false reporting. Also, an infestation may have been detected and eliminated. There is little provision for establishments to update the situation. If your hotel reservation is listed on the site, would it encourage you to check your room thoroughly? Cancel? Reconsider?

I will leave it up to my readers to reply in the comments. Do you trust this information to be accurate? Is the information useful? Why or why not.
Safe travels and don’t let the bed bugs bite.

Underside of Immature Bed Bug

About jjneal

Jonathan Neal is a retired Associate Professor of Entomology at Purdue University and author of the textbook, Living With Insects (2010). This blog is a forum to communicate about the intersection of insects with people and policy. This is a personal blog. The opinions and materials posted here are those of the author and are in no way connected with those of my employer.
This entry was posted in Education, Health, Pest Management, Policy. Bookmark the permalink.

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