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Bed Bugs Major Issue for American Hotels

Bed Bugs Major Issue for American Hotels
Jennifer Billock

The majority of hotels – eight out of ten – have had to face severe bed bug issues in the past year, ponying up substantial amounts to mediate the problem or stop it before it starts, showing that bed bugs are an ever present problem in American hotels.

Pest control company Orkin recently partnered with the Bantam Group to release a study exploring bed bug incidents in American hotels over the last year. The results were staggering – 8 of 10 hotels have had issues with the bugs, with 40 percent needing to have some sort of treatment done to the property. It’s not cheap, either. The average cost of bed bug remediation, according to the study, is about $6,383 per occurrence.

The costs only rise from there, with potential lawsuits hitting up to $17,000. The study also showed that every five years, properties with bed bug problems have had to tackle the issue just over seven times.

“Bed bugs have long been a business concern for hotels, but this research helps hospitality professionals quantify the costs associated with bed bugs and benchmark what they’re spending on remediation versus their peers,” Dr. Mark Beavers, an Orkin entomologist and managing director of technical services, said in a release. “It’s important for hoteliers to understand that bed bug introductions are not a rare occurrence nor are they caused by poor housekeeping or cleanliness practices. Unfortunately, the introduction of bed bugs is beyond a hotelier’s control because they often are brought in by hotel guests, no matter the hotel’s level of luxury. As we continue to find ways to combat bed bugs, hoteliers need to learn their risks, how to spot them and how to proactively fight against infestations.”

View Comments (6)


  1. roberto99

    July 13, 2018 at 4:14 am

    I believe that the hotels had to “remediate” the problem, not mediate the problem.

  2. DaveS

    July 19, 2018 at 4:43 am

    So 80% (8 out of 10) have a problem, but only 40% felt the need to treat it. Worrying.

  3. MrCF

    July 19, 2018 at 4:47 am

    The percentage of hotels involved seems ridiculously high, but does anyone even question the numbers that are supplied by Orkin? They are not a disinterested party, they sell remediation for the problem, of course they want to say it is more prevalent than it is. I wish someone who didn’t have a dog in the fight would tell us the numbers.

  4. Neal

    July 19, 2018 at 5:12 am

    The biggest concern is not just being bitten in your hotel bed but having them hitchhike home in your luggage. We recently had bedbugs and had to have our home treated. They are notoriously difficult to treat and eliminate completely. According to the the last few hotels I stayed in have reported incidents of bedbugs. From now on, anytime I check into a hotel room I’m going to do a bedbug inspection and take other precautions.

  5. ERtraveler

    July 19, 2018 at 12:59 pm

    A good test is to open the bed covers to the bottom sheet and run a hot iron over that sheet and watch for the bugs scurrying towards the heat.

  6. txirish

    July 20, 2018 at 8:55 am

    If 80% of hotels have a problem, we should all come home with bites (and maybe stowaway critters) nearly every time we travel. Not my experience at all, in any category from 5-star down to fairly inexpensive hotels. I think that Orkin forced that headline somehow. Maybe 80% of hotels have reported a bedbug complaint in five years? Or the last year? One promptly-treated incident (or an inaccurate complaint by a guest) isn’t equivalent to an ongoing, hotel-wide infestation, which is kind of the image they are painting.

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