It’s time once again to talk about something that no innkeeper wants to discuss, but every innkeeper needs to discuss: bed bugs.
These pests aren’t something you can afford to take lightly, as bed bugs in hotels can severely mar your guests’ experience.
At the same time, it’s important not to treat bed bugs like the boogeyman. Let’s spend some time eradicating some common myths about bed bugs in hotels with the help of National Geographic. Continue reading
The hotel industry has been battling bed bugs for, well, as long as there have been hotels.
If you traveled back in time to ancient Egypt or medieval England or colonial America, you’d likely find some frazzled innkeeper wondering how to keep bed bugs out of their establishment. Continue reading
After almost 30 years of serving the hospitality industry, I have seen many changes, but one thing has remained the same:
Whether people are on vacation or traveling for business, they want to stay in a clean room with clean sheets, clean towels and clean bedding.
Guests have become even more conscious of room cleanliness in recent years thanks to some high-profile and widespread beg bug invasions.
We’ve written blog posts in the past about protecting a room and a bed against bed bugs. If guest finds – or worse, is bitten by – a bed bug, it can be an expensive proposition.
That’s why protection is your best prevention. Be vigilant in checking your room each time a guest checks in our checks out.
We just returned from the AIHP conference in Nashville and I was reflecting on why attending these types of events is so important…
My husband and I have traveled quite often during our 50 years together, staying in a variety of resorts, hotels, bed and breakfasts and “economy hotels”.
And when we began to enjoy longer stays at vacation rental properties in Florida, I noticed many of the “economy” properties we stopped at during our trips to and from the Sunshine State were no longer providing just “economy” quality and service.
Hotels are bed bug hives.
Okay, so this description is going to sound unflattering to those who work in the hospitality industry. But for pest control professionals, it’s difficult to view hotels the way the rest of society sees hotels. After all, hotels solicit the services of pest control professionals more than most people would guess (or care to know).
While some hotels don’t clean enough or educate their staff about spotting bed bugs, most establishments have bed bug problems because of factors outside of their control. Simply put, hotels can’t search their guests’ luggage, find out their cleaning habits, or examine individual articles of clothing, all of which are prime causes of bed bug outbreaks.
People expect inconsistency. We figure things will fluctuate: the stock market will go up and down, the weather will get colder, then hotter.
And because we focus on these changes, we often overlook trends.
Let’s look at bed bugs. You might say the proliferation of these pests in the past few years will eventually pass, but the facts don’t support this theory.
According to a 2013 survey of pest control professionals, 99.6 percent of the companies questioned had handled a bed bug infestation in the previous 12 months, up from 99 percent in 2011 and 95 percent in 2010.
Despite these numbers, you may think that your home or business isn’t susceptible to a bed bug infestation.
But sometimes bed bug problems have nothing to do with you. The people that visit or stay at your home or business bring their own cleaning habits with them. Luggage that hasn’t been thoroughly cleaned or checked can transport bugs into a home. And while your visitors might frown on you inspecting their bags, you can try to clean their rooms after they’ve gone to prevent a bed bug invasion.
If you’re a traveler, unpack your suitcase downstairs when you get home and clean it. Take every item out and wash and dry it before bringing any clothes or your suitcase back into your bedroom.
Here are three other ways that you can reduce the chances of a bed bug infestation at your home or business.
A comfortable mattress is not only a necessity, but also an investment into your health and well-being.
We all rely on our mattresses to provide us with a clean and comfortable night’s rest. Unfortunately, the quality of a mattress is often overlooked until you start experiencing an achy back or lose multiple nights of sleep.
While there is not a single type of mattress that is perfect for everyone, taking a few steps to capitalize on the life of your mattress can make you realize other multiple health benefits.
Here are a few tips that will help your mattresses last a little bit longer.
Keep the Mattress Dry
The one thing that can cut back on the life of your mattress is moisture. Whenever you sleep, your body generates moisture in the form of sweat that gets trapped in your blankets or the mattress. This becomes even more persistent during the spring and summer months, particularly if you reside in a humid environment where the air remains damp, which prevents the evaporation of moisture.
The trapped moisture can get the spring and the foam inside affected. Worse still, the mattress can sag, grow mold, develop rust, or give off an unpleasant odor if not aerated and dried as soon as possible.
To protect your mattress from moisture, leave it uncovered for awhile after waking up in order to aerate it. In the case of spillage, wipe the affected area immediately with a towel. Directing a fan or a blower at an uncovered bed can also help drive away the moisture.
While many factors will affect the longevity of your mattress (its original quality, for instance, and the amount of use), cleaning your mattress on a regular basis and protecting it from spills, insects, and even allergens can help you get the most from your investment.
As our regular readers will remember, we briefly touched on the topic of mattress protection in a recent blog post titled “How to Make the Perfect Bed”. In this post we’ll delve more deeply into the topic of the care and protection of your mattress, and provide you with a list of our favorite products to accomplish this important task.
The Stearns & Foster Airdale Luxury Mattress from InnStyle
All this month, InnStyle is having a sale on both Sealy and Stearns & Foster mattresses. The mattresses we offer from these well-known manufacturers of hospitality mattresses are of the very highest quality.
I mention this as our prices on these mattresses are always excellent … and with the November sale, they’re even better!
When selling a mattress, we always recommend purchasing mattress and box spring encasements (preferably with protection against bed-bugs).
Along with the encasements — which should be zippered and should fully encase your mattress and box spring — we advise our customers to protect their mattresses by purchasing and using luggage racks in each guest room.
Placing luggage racks in each guest room is important for any number of reasons. For starters, they protect your mattress, bedspread, coverlet or duvet against regular wear and tear. They also protect the bed itself from any dirt, grease or bedbugs that guests may have unknowingly picked up during their travels.
We offer an especially wide range of different luggage rack styles on our website.
As a homeowner and the only person/people sleeping on your mattress, you may not be as concerned about mattress protection as an innkeeper or hotel manager. Although it is important to use the same care as described in this article for saving your mattress investment, an innkeeper will find it even more important for their guests.
As an innkeeper or hotel owner, you cannot be too careful about protecting your mattresses from human contamination, bedbugs, dust mites, etc. So we, at InnStyle, always recommend good mattress hygiene by protecting your mattresses from bodily fluids, including blood, urine, perspiration and what cannot always be easily seen on the mattress.