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Video: Couple Encounter Bedbug Infestation at NYC Hotel

Two travelers document a bedbug infestation at their New York hotel in a viral video posted online.

Two travelers hoping to celebrate a birthday in New York City got more than they bargained for and caught the entire ordeal on video. Talking to New York ABC affiliate WABC-TV, a California couple claims a bedbug infestation at a Manhattan hotel turned their dream trip into a nightmare.

Elgin Ozlen and his girlfriend took the trip to New York as a gift from his mother. As part of the trip, the couple had plans to see The Rockettes perform and watch the ball drop at Times Square to ring in the New Year. However, after checking in at the Astor on the Park Hotel in Manhattan, the couple claims their trip was immediately derailed.

In a video posted to YouTube, Ozlen detailed the walk to his room, followed by what he described as an infestation of bedbugs. Ozlen was able to capture a cluster of the parasites on his video, in addition to other telltale signs that the bugs had been there. In addition, Ozlen also showed multiple places where the bedbugs allegedly bit his girlfriend. Sores were visibly noticeable on her arm, shoulders, and abdomen.

“This is no joke,” Ozlen tells the camera. “I can’t believe it…this is the third room that we’ve been in after the first two didn’t have heaters…[the bugs] are everywhere.”

Ozlen told WABC he had to cancel many of the plans that he had for his New York trip on account of the bedbugs. He claims he was forced to go to the hospital in addition to cleaning all of his personal items.

After the ordeal, the couple told WABC the hotel refunded him for his stay. The Astor on the Park Hotel and the New York City Department of Housing did not provide comment on the incident.

[Photo via Getty]

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styxfire January 9, 2016

In my travels I've stayed at 1 hotel in OR that had a HIGHLY infested room, and another hotel in TX after which I found a bedbug in my duffel bag after checkout but hadn't see them in the room. I know for a fact what a bedbug looks like (I reported the OR incident to the health department in OR, along with a couple specimens I captured from the bed. It is a true nightmare. In both cases the bugs got in my luggage. So I know the horror & feeling of violation that comes from paying to stay at a hotel that leaves you with bedbugs. But I didn't respect the closing statement from the videographer, who seems to want to destroy the hotel's reputation. Any reasonable person knows that the hotel doesn't PLANT bedbugs. They didn't do this on purpose (I don't think so, anyway). I do feel he's entitled to a refund (which he got) and to have his cleaning expenses reimbursed, as well as any medical bills. However, I don't respect his purposeful motives to destroy the hotel's reputation. His type of retaliation might be in order IF the hotel knowingly put him in a room which had previously been reported as having bugs. But otherwise, he's just a vengeful person seeking to be a litigant. In my case, I DID eventually receive a refund from one hotel, but it took an official inspection from the Health Department to receive it. I personally will never stay there again. Through several correspondences with the Health Department, I know that my hotel room was inspected and treated and was found to be sanitized afterward. I did not feel the need to destroy the hotel... rather, I just made sure the problem was fixed. I don't respect the person who filmed this video in his effort to destroy the hotel, and I don't think FlyerTalk made an appropriate decision in posting it. Hotels don't do this on purpose... infested people purchase a night, and then infest others. Do you try to destroy a hotel every time you go on a trip and pick up someone else's cold?

BadgerBoi January 8, 2016

I'm sorry but I haven't stopped scratching myself since I looked at that video. I've never seen those things before, and I hope I never see them up close.