COLUMBIA, S.C., Dec. 21, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- With a 99% increase in bed bug services over the past two years, Terminix Service, Inc. is offering expert recommendations and simple steps for homeowners and business owners to reduce the risk of bed bugs while traveling during the holidays.

"Bed bugs are becoming more and more common and the chances of encountering them are pretty high when traveling," said Board certified entomologist and Terminix technical director Kevin T. Hathorne. "Whether you're taking a business trip or visiting family for the holidays, you may come in contact with a bed bug infested area."

The facts:

  • Bed bugs don't fly, but they are good hitchhikers and can easily climb onto luggage or clothing which is how infestations are usually spread. Most people know that bed bugs are typically found in places where people sleep but they have also been found almost anywhere people visit. This includes public transportation (taxis, planes, cruise ships, etc.), department stores, movie theaters, office buildings, schools, churches, and various other places.
  • Bed bugs do not discriminate. They don't care if you are rich or poor or dirty or clean. A five star resort is just as likely to have bed bugs as the motel down the street.
  • Bed bugs may be gross but they are not dangerous. According to a recent survey conducted by the National Pest Management Association, the fear of getting bitten was at the top of the list of concerns associated with getting bed bugs. Bed bugs have not been proven to transmit any disease and their bites are relatively painless. The typical reaction is a red swollen bump that occurs at the site of the bite with perhaps some itching, while it is estimated about 40% of the population does not react to bed bug bites at all. In rare cases, moderate to severe allergic reactions can occur.

Travel tips:

Packing and Checking In

1. Consider a hard-shelled suitcase, offering fewer crevices where bugs can hide.
2. Check for bed bugs before unpacking or settling into your room. Avoid putting your baggage on the bed or on the floor—use the luggage rack or place luggage in the bathroom while you inspect the room. For the duration of your stay, consider hanging clothing in the closet or keep your luggage on the dresser.
3. Pull back the sheets from the mattress and look for bugs along the seams or tiny blood spots on the mattress or sheets. Look along the edges and in the seams.
4. Inspect the headboard and behind it.
5. Examine upholstered furniture and window treatments.
6. Notify management immediately and change rooms or hotels if you see evidence of bed bugs.

Coming Home

1. Before you bring your suitcase into the house, vacuum off luggage and consider using a brush to scrub items that can't be washed.
2. Unpack immediately and launder all clothes in hot water and dry on high heat.

If you inadvertently bring bed bugs home with you and discover bed bugs in your home, call 1-800-TERMINIX immediately. A small infestation is cheaper and easier to control than one that has had time to spread.

"The idea of something sucking out our blood while we are supposed to be safe and snug at night is psychologically troubling and quite unsettling," said Hawthorne. "Having bed bugs can bring stress and psychological trauma, so it's important to know the facts and always call in an expert from Terminix if you think you have a problem."

For more information on bed bugs and prevention tips, please visit

About Terminix Service, Inc.

For more than 65 years, our customers have trusted Terminix for the very best in termite and pest control protection for their homes and businesses. In addition to the strongest termite damage guarantee in the industry, Terminix also provides mosquito management, wildlife control, fire ant control, fumigations, crawl space ventilation, dehumidification and moisture control. Terminix Service, Inc. provides service in South Carolina, western North Carolina and the CSRA area of eastern Georgia.

Media Contact
Tracy Bender
Terminix Service, Inc.
803. 312.4154