Bed bugs in luggage can be spread anywhere the traveler moves.
Bed bugs are excellent hitchhikers and they will readily catch a ride on luggage. While they don’t seek to ride on luggage, as crawlers, they have the ability to end up on luggage when t is transported.
Bed bugs can enter luggage while it is in storage between trips, perhaps crawling from an infested bed to a luggage storage area under the bed. When the suitcase is packed, the bed bug will be packed with the clean clothes. When the luggage is unpacked, the bed bugs might stay in the luggage. They also might be in the clothing that is put in a dresser in a hotel or friend’s house. This can lead to eggs being laid and a new infestation in the furniture.
When traveling, a suitcase can come in contact with infested suitcases. The close proximity of luggage in storage at a hotel or in a cargo hold of a plane can lead to an infestation of luggage. Even placing luggage in overhead compartments of transportation can subject luggage to infested areas. Bed bugs can then easily be transported home.
Luggage should be inspected thoroughly using a flashlight prior to any trip. This will allow the traveler to know whether there is a concern before the trip. While traveling, it is best to inspect luggage prior to departing each lodging. When on the road, only unpack the luggage if absolutely necessary and store bags away from the beds, such as in a foyer or bathroom. It is best to avoid using luggage racks.
Upon arrival home, inspect the bag and wash any item that was in the bag if washable. If there is any suspicion of bed bugs, contact a professional pest control company that will thoroughly inspect the luggage.
There are luggage encasements which can be used while traveling so that bed bugs cannot enter luggage. Frequent travelers should consider using these relatively inexpensive barriers.
Note the bed bug droppings on this hotel mattress (typical sign of bed bug activity).