As more and more travelers take off for Spring Break, the number of bed bug infestations will go up, as well. Bed bugs are known travelers and will hitch a ride on our clothes, luggage, and briefcases. Once bed bugs arrive, they are extremely hard to get rid of. So what can you do to prevent bringing these unwanted guests back home from your Spring Break vacation?

Do Some Research: There are several resources available to check for the presence of bed bugs. The Bed Bug Registry is a public database of user-submitted bed bug reports from across the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. Established in 2006, the Bed Bug Registry has mapped more than 12,000 hotels based on over 20,000 reports from travelers. Check out one of these sites to see if your accommodations have a history of bed bug problems.

Check Things Out: Give your room a thorough inspection before bringing in your luggage. Be sure to check the bed, sheets, mattress (even the seams), headboard, pillows, furniture, baseboards, drawers, and even the picture frames. One common sign of bed bugs is brown or blood-tinged spots on the sheets or mattress. If you find evidence of bed bugs, notify the front office and hotel manager immediately. You can request to change hotels or just change to another room but make sure it isn’t above, below, or adjacent to the infested room.

Be Proactive: Pack a large trash bag with your luggage and store your luggage in it while in the room. Don’t leave any clothes, purses, or computer bags on upholstered furniture in your room. Keep all bags closed when not in use. Double check your bags and clothing before you repack. Once you return home, immediately unpack your dirty clothes directly into the washer and then dry them on high heat. Store your suitcases away from any living areas such as the garage or the basement.

Call A Professional: If you suspect a bed bug problem in your home, call a professional pest control company. They can give your house a thorough inspection and provide the appropriate treatment plan for your situation.