Bed Bugs in Hotel Room - Appropriate Compensation

Hi Ozbargainers,

I'm overseas for about a month in Vanuatu. Unluckily, there has been bed bugs found in our room. We reported to reception today that we have woken up for a few days very itchy (at first we thought it was mosquitoes). They confirmed today that it is bed bugs. Apparently, they were just found in the room bed head. We have stayed in our room for 10 days already.

We have been offered a room change (downgrade as none available) until Friday when the treatment will be complete. At this stage we will move back to our current room.

Honestly, we're pissed. The accomodation is 4* and runs about $300 a night full price. We got a discount as we were staying for a month. Its still 120 Aud a night.

They are offering to just wash our clothes. I'm not convinced this will solve the issue. I'm honestly just frightened about bringing our clothes back to Australia and infecting our houses.

I was thinking they should reimburse us for our clothes and luggage as this seems to be the only sure shot of a cure. I also do not want to move back to the same room.

What do you think is appropriate compensation?

Thanks for the Help.

Update 1: Talked to management today. They currently have pest control in our old room. Pest control will be back in the afternoon and tomorrow.

The hotel's solution for our belongings is to wash our clothes on hot and then put them in the dryer on high. They intend to steam clean our suitcases. We explained that some of our clothes will likely be damaged through the process. We explained that we will get rid of the suitcases and our clothes before going back home. As this is the only sure fire way to eliminate the bed bugs.

We asked to be refunded for the 10 days we stayed in a bed bug apartment. As well the difference in the room rates between our old apartment and the current room. They manager however needs to check with the owner about all of that. We intend to use the refund money to buy new clothes.

Thanks for all the help guys will keep you updated

Update 2:

I woke up feeling like I had more bites today. Decided I should politely tell the hotel staff and ask if the pest control guy can check our room. The new room has a lot of ants around it and they even got into our bok choy and unopened fruit. We decided we could live with ants and we didnt want to cause additional fuss while we were here. So we tell reception on the way to the hospital that we might have some new bites and if its convenient would they mind getting the pest control man to check the room please.

We return early from the hospital as an outing got cancelled. Theres two people cleaning our room (usually only 1). We asked if there was any bed bugs. They said "pest control said the rooms all okay were just doing an extra good clean". Then they added "you shouldnt leave your cabbage out (bok choy) as the ants have gotten into it". We explained the situation saying theres lots of ants around but we didnt want to be a pain etc. They just said "no its like if you leave a biscuit out, ants will get into it". They asked if they could continue. We said if its okay we'll just get changed then go.

We walk into our room. The head board from above our bed is outside (this is where the bed bugs were found previously). We see the pest control guy and ask whats going on. He's like, "no bed bugs, but i found so many tiny ants, they're everywhere. The head board is full of them, so im just treating the board".

We're feeling pretty flat and deceived. Still need to talk to management…

Final Update: The tune of management has changed after talking to the owner. They will refund us the 10 days as well as refunding the difference in room rates. :)

Thanks for all the support guys.


  • Washing your clothing, and perhaps asking them to clean / de-bug your suitcases, is probably all they can do.
    Maybe a room upgrade for the rest of your stay.

    • What do you reckon the chances are of bringing the bed bugs back to Australia?

      • +11

        Online searches show washing / drying clothes is pretty good.
        Unlikely the bedbugs are in your cases, but vacuum them and inspect afterwards.

        If you want a sure-fire solution, tell Quarantine on arrival back in Australia. They will love to sort you out.

        • +13

          tell Quarantine on arrival back in Australia. They will love to sort you out.

          probably free night stay too, bargain!

      • +4

        You will need to wash at 90 degrees to kill any eggs that might be in your clothes. Best to wash to have it cleaned.

        If you are moving back into the room for about a week or two, certain treatments can kill any bedbugs that might hatch therefore likely they will also die.

        • Okay thats the same as what I've read. I mean i think my plan so far is wash everything well and get new suitcases.

          I'm just wondering whether the hotel should compensate for new bags at the very least. Or provide some free meals given the previous room had a full kitchen and the new room currently has a hot plate with no pots and pans… and were still paying the same rates as the old room. Such a pain.

          Appreciate the advice mate :)

  • +7

    Appropriate… now let me see

    Under the compensation rule book by Slister and Gillurd, that will be $500K for bleeding induced, $5m for embarassment.

    However when I found bed bugs at my sisters place it was appropriate for me to yell and throw a tantrum

    Otherwise I have no idea what would be "appropriate"

    • I think I'm just super salty no one has even apologised. They just said,"this is what happens in places like Vanuatu and Fiji". The bed bugs are everywhere. We can even see them on the couches now. Such a pain :(

      • +3

        I imagine you can get them elsewhere in Vanuatu and Fiji; you can also get them in New York (pretty common apparently).

        Nothing to do with the places.

        Bed bugs are carried by people's belongings. All places that have regular visitors are likely.

        • Yeah of course. Definitely not destination specific.

          • @Coatesy: My point was you asked for "appropriate" compensation.

            So its like asking us how long is the piece of string that ties your luggage together. Unless we have had exactly the same situation and expectations you have then….

            More acceptable is, can any advise if they have had the same issue, and what compensation they got.

            Good luck

  • -3

    Ask Vanuatians… then tell us how humiliated you felt when they laughed at you

  • +1

    A good washing and an apology is all good enough. There’s not a lot you can do anyway.

  • +2

    The hotel could have played hard ball and asked you to show it wasn't you that caused/brought in the bed bugs.

    Washing clothes generally does the trick especially the heavy chemicals and industrial dryers that they use.

    • Yeah, interesting point. Do you think we need to worry about they getting into our luggage? If you shake the furniture the bed bugs come out of the bottom.. hahaha

      • +2

        Bed bugs are commonly transported by luggage. I'd ditch them and buy some cheap luggage to take home.

        Also exclude your clothing in garbage bags and seal them up when you travel home so you can re-wash the lot on a hot wash and a good long dry (hot as you can). Anything you can't wash you can either carefully inspect or throw away.

        • Cheers man, appreciate the advice. Think I'll get some new luggage before i come home.

  • Appropriate compensation is the loss that you have suffered. If the only loss is that bedbugs are in your clothes and washing does the job, than that and an apology is all that you are entitled to.

    • +3

      That may be so from a strictly legal perspective …. a good hotel will not only make the guest whole but also add some goodwill as part of the service recovery, after all they are in the service industry

      • +1

        But that's the difference between "compensation" and "goodwill". Many use these terms inter-changeably and therefore incorrectly.

        The first applies solely to putting you back in the same position you were in prior to the issue arising. For most issues that people come across, any level of "compensation" is likely to be very limited, such as those described by @saintpotter.

        The second is then an additional gesture that the person/entity that caused the issue may provide to put you in a better position than you would have otherwise been in. In your circumstance, this may be a room upgrade, hotel credit, etc., etc.

        Many of the posts seen here lately talking about "compensation" are really talking about "goodwill". I'm more than happy to accept your point that businesses probably should offer more gestures of goodwill than they seem prepared to do, particularly when the actual costs of that goodwill are often approaching zero.

    • and the value of the downgraded room for the period of their stay. But I think it'd be nice if they threw in a couple of free breakfasts or something too.

  • +2

    Most hotels and resorts usually have a system in place to get rid of bed bugs. It isn't usually an indication of the hotel but more of the clientele who bring them in… often people don't notice and report the issue and then they take hold in the room.

  • +6

    At 300 a night I'd be wanting a full refund. Bed bugs are not something I would want to play around with. Frankly I'd be discarding everything I owned.

    It's a good reason to have 'travel stuff' thats not as nice as your regular things

    • +1

      Hahaha, yeah that was our first reaction. The comments here are making me feel like i was over reacting. I'm doubtful my girlfriend will let me bring any of my clothes back to our place anyway :S

      • +7

        I doubt the people here travel much, and I doubt they did more than skim read your post. What I'm guessing they heard is something along the lines of 'I went to a hotel and the bus boy spilled a bit of wine on my shoes AND IT RUINED MY WHOLE TRIP wah wah wah'. Their comments make much more sense in that light.
        Or maybe they heard that they own a hotel that you've stayed in, and now you want them to compensate you for something an unrelated third party did? How dare you. Get out of my hotel right now you delinquent! :P

        People are so freakin nuts man. They really do just hear what they want to hear.

        In my mind:
        Bed bugs in a $20 a night hostel in some 3rd world country? Okay not the best, but you kinda should have known you were taking that risk when you booked it.

        Bed bugs in a $300 luxury hotel? Yeahhhh, no. I'm not swallowing that.

        • +1

          Cheers man, appreciate the support. The hotel really isnt offering us much. They havnt mentioned really any compensation at all apart from washing our clothes and downgrading our room.

          • @Coatesy: You probably didn't do it right. There's a bit of an art to it.

            Hey no worries man. You sound like a reasonable guy. Unfortunately, reasonable guys and gals tend to get screwed by the system in matters like these.

            • @outlander: Do you have a strategy/plan you want to share? We're trying to come up with a plan as they are going to ask pest control how serious it is tomorrow and then talk to us about compensation. We have already made it clear we are not happy with the current management.

              • +1

                @Coatesy: I have a couple.. but you're probably not going to like it. This isn't really a situation where there's a magic fix, like saying 'potato cakes' to the desk clerk and him going 'Well then that changes everything Sir! Here's everything you want, on the house'. It requires a little acting, personal control, and confrontation, which most people aren't terribly comfortable with. That's the ideal approach though. Even if you trend towards the anxious and nonconfrontational (as I do) there are still plenty of things you can do, whereby you push for things, and if it doesn't immediately work you say 'oh well. it was worth a shot' and abandon it.

                First things first, before making any moves I would do a few things
                1) Look up the law for Vanuatu, and do a quick search for any cultural things that might get you in trouble. Also get the number for a lawyer in case you do mess up and end up on the wrong side of the law. (this is a good plan to have when visiting any new place really)
                2) Look for alternate accommodation, so that if you get banned you have other options for sleeping.
                3) Make a mental list of the weapons at your disposal. CC chargeback? A string of bad reviews? Bad word of mouth? You're not as defenseless as you imagine. One pissed off competent person can cause a lot of trouble for a business that relies on internet traffic.

                The end game of all the strategies is to convince the hotel manager that he will lose more money by not keeping you happy than he will gain, and that that loss will lead him to be fired from his job.

                • @outlander: Ill do my best tomorrow and write back.

                  • +1

                    @Coatesy: Good luck!
                    If you remember anything, let it be to a) remain calm and polite but be forceful in what you want and b) use the term 'infested' as much as you can. Its the perfect word for your situation. It says everything

              • @Coatesy: your girlfriend is probably wishing for a Karen rn.

        • 4* in Vanuatu at $120 a night 'discounted' is luxury?

          • @Soluble: Yeah it runs about 300 a night usually. So not decadent luxury but very very nice.

            • @Coatesy: I imagine they have never charged $300 a night and its always on sale

  • +1

    How vindictive do you want to get? Me personally i'd take staff hostage and demand to be treated like royalty as a foreigner. Perhaps just consult ozbargain, then write a review on trip advisor?
    Also, try contact the aust dept of foriegn affairs through your embassy. Its their job to help you

    • -1

      Yeah, we'll flick Dfat an email tomorrow. Not sure theres much they will be able to do. But worth a shot. :)

      • +1

        My friend was in a similar aituation a few months ago, DFAT put them up in a serviced apartment in the embassy region due to the poor standards of their accomodation.

        • -2

          Man, we'll definitely email Dfat tomorrow and let you know how it goes. Thanks for the help.

  • +1

    Can your travel insurance help?

    • We're here on a medical elective so we have a group Uni policy that we'll have to check. I dont think insurance usually covers these sorts of things but we could get lucky. Thanks for the idea.

      • UoN?

        • Nah Im on the West Coast :)

          • @Coatesy: Ahh had a mate that studied at Newcastle and also went to Vanuatu for a med related…"thing".

            • +1

              @activ8newbs: Yeah theres a bunch of us around. Maybe ill run into your mate. Or youll hear about some poor bastard with bed bugs from your mate and realise thats me hahaha

      • Which medical elective? "Pharma Junkets 101"? :-)

  • -1

    I would ask for free room service and a couple of hookers sent to your room

  • This also happened to friends in Hawaii after their first night.

    They were upgraded to another room for the remainder of their stay and were initially offered the cost of 1 nights accommodation as a credit to their bill. Ended up politely insisting upon further compensation for 'inconvenience' & replacement of belongings, including suitcases - they went shopping to all the outlets on Day 2 & issued the hotel with the receipts. Had to be firm with the manager but kept repeating that they didn't want to risk reinfestation of their new room so it was in the hotel's best interests. It worked!

    Good luck!

    • Thanks for the advice. We're going to do our best. The above scenario would be ideal.

  • Hot wash don't bring suitcase into your house just take close out at your door.

    • Yeah I think were just going to leave everything here. Were definitely not taking the suitcases home. it's just not worth risk of infesting our homes.

      • +1

        not worth being stopped at border security either

        • Agreed. Im not sure what the protocol is for bed bugs when you return home either.

          • +1

            @Coatesy: at the end of your day when you're buggered, do some research and lemme know too in case I stay at a 4 star vanuatuan hotel. Cheers! :)

            • @capslock janitor: Man, the pain is the hotel is well reviewed and relatively expensive. But, They are just treating us like its all our fault and that we're being a massive inconvenience. We totally understand bed bugs can happen anywhere, we just thought they'd be a little more accomodating after. They havnt even said sorry or offered us anything. Just a room downgrade… ughh

              • @Coatesy: Maybe ease back a little.

                How have you approached this with the staff? Loud, angry, entitled? I'm not aware how long you have been in Vanuatu, but have you yet picked up on how timid the local population can be, particularly if harassed by expats / tourists.

                How long were you in the room before you found the bed bugs? It could be that your bags became infested on the plane or elsewhere and actually brought them into the room. As others have pointed out, bed bugs are travellers and will hitch a lift anyway they can.

                Have you spoken to the owners yet? If you have only raised this with the staff, they would almost certainly not have any authority to offer anything else. You may have noticed by now that things take a little longer in the tropics. I suggest being firm but respectful when enquiring further, and just get the meeting with the owner.

                Worse case, find somewhere else to stay. As you are doing medical experience, I imagine your days are pretty busy anyway so perhaps you don't need the luxury and can find an alternate.

  • Appropriate compensation would be getting to light the match

  • If you booked through Expedia/ I would use live chat to discuss the issue and arrange a refund. That has worked successfully for me before when I encountered bed bugs in a hostel.
    Alternatively, if you paid by AMEX or Credit Card, you could look to issue a chargeback of some kind. Perhaps ask for a signed note from the hotel explaining the situation and the action taken.
    Lastly, there may be some kind of cover in your travel insurance for personal effects/belongings being lost or damaged? This is probably less likely in practice.

    In terms of removing the bugs, my girlfriend stayed in a bed bug ridden apartment and it was a nightmare. In order to kill them, I would bag up all your clothes in bin bags based on washload size portions (isolate the bugs). You then have to wash on very hot (likely damages all clothes especially those with elastics) and then do a long hot dry. After she did it, around half her clothes were mis-shapen and had to be thrown away. It'd be ideal if you can list your clothing, its cost and the damage to help with any claim.

    If I were in your position, to be negated for the actual damages as a result of their actions, I would want:
    a) My clothes to be de-bugged for me and payment made for any that are damaged beyond repair (unless this was covered by travel insurance)
    b) Suitcase sprayed/treated and payment made if it could not be done (unless this was covered by travel insurance)
    c) Compensation for the room rate difference (i.e. re-imbursed maybe 1/3 of the cost to cover the downgrade)
    d) Gesture of goodwill from the hotel for the trouble e.g. meal or drinks

    • Thanks for going through all the different options. Unfortunately, we booked directly through the hotel as given our long stay this was significantly cheaper than the booking sites. We also paid cash due to the 3.5% surcharge on any credit cards or debit cards :( we weren't exactly expecting bed bugs but good to keep in mind for the future.

      the following A, B, C were brought up. They are just going to wash the clothes on a hot wash in the washing machine and then put them in the dryer. I explained some of the clothes might be damaged. Especially, the elastic. However, they need to take any financial compensation to the owner before proceeding.

      There was no mention of D, still no apology.

      • @Coatesy

        we booked directly through the hotel as given our long stay this was significantly cheaper than the booking sites. We also paid cash due to the 3.5% surcharge on any credit cards or debit cards

        So you physically carried at least $3600 in cash??? To a third world country? In order to save $126.00. But foregoing the advantages of credit card payment, including possible free travel insurance, and possible chargeback. And not having to carry around $1000's of dollars in cash.

        OK, lesson learned. An itchy lesson, to be sure.

        As for 'compensation'. If the hotel is part of a large international chain, you have a few options if you are unsatisfied with the local response. Most important will be documenting everything, with dates, times, locations, records of conversations, offers of remedy. Definitely include photos (of the offending critters on beds, in clothing, etc). Presenting such evidence to the chain's main office (customer relations, etc) will certainly garner some form of response. And you can take it from there.

        Of course, if there is yet another domino in your tale of woe/incompetence/inexperience/misfortune, and this hotel is purely a local enterprise, then it is likely you have received about as much 'compensation' as you are likely to ever receive. Press hard and you may get some future discount on accommodation (although why you'd ever want to return is a fair question), but given the huge level of 'discount' you already have obtained, this would be unlikely anyway.

        I'm sure we would all love other countries, cultures, etc to have the same standards, consumer laws, etc that we experience in Australia. Perhaps some wealthy European countries may match or exceed us. But Vanuatu, despite being a nominal democracy (although one with with zero female MPs or tribal chiefs, BTW), sits on world corruption and freedom indexes around the level of Senegal or Malaysia; it is still a third world country.

        Good luck.

  • I think asking for a full refund for the days you spent in the infected room, and a reduced rate for your new room, would seem fair.

    I wouldn't expect them to replace my clothes or luggage though. Bed bugs are inevitable even in the fanciest of hotels simply because of the number of guests that come through there.

    It's always a good idea to check the corners of beds when you first check into a room, and never put your luggage on the floor. Use those little bench strap thingies that you often seen in the room, that's what they are for.

    • Yeah we did this today. Ideally we'll just use refund money for the new clothes. They need to talk to the owners though.

    • What do you look for, at the corner of the beds????
      thanks Maria

      • Dark spots basically. They like to hang out on the corners and in the creases of the mattrass.

  • +7

    So OP is in a country classified as Third World, to undertake a medical experience elective. Manages to do a deal to get accommodation at $120/night (usually $300/night), and unfortunately someone in the room before OP brought in bed bugs (which can happen anywhere in the world at any accommodation).

    And some people want to involve the Aust High Commission / DFAT to sort it out?
    Or claim under travel insurance?

    I don't have a problem with negotiating some resolution with the accommodation provider, particularly as OP has been down-graded whilst the issue is sorted out, but that should be the end of it.
    And I really hope that OP has learnt enough about the Melanesian culture to approach this negotiation with tact and respect.

    • This is hilarious. Complains about bugs in a third-world country and expects the world for a measley $120 a night.

      I slept in a $120 room in Indonesia that had sewage backing up the shower in the morning.

      That's the wonder of travelling. It's your own fault you didn't pay on card or get proper travel insurance. You live you learn.

  • +2

    Compo compo compo…..

    Smart Traveler knows he is in the "tropics" and finds it amusing watching all those IDIOTS just "itching" to complain.
    Smart Traveler does not sue over sea lice, or bed bugs, or melting cocktail drink ice, Smart Traveler, keeps away from the seaweed areas, brings a special sleeping bag/sheet, understands that heat = faster melting cocktail ice, and enjoys his holiday, why, because he is Smart Traveler living in REALITY with his mind on relaxation whilst being amused by the IDIOTS ringing front desk, calling over the waiter, complaining to the gods, all seemingly over such TRIVIAL issues.
    Smart Traveler is on the dive boat whilst IDIOT is on the phone. Smart Traveler is having a great sleep in his sleeping sheet/bag, whilst IDIOT is tossing and turning. Smart Traveler arrives home with great stories, whilst IDOT can only think of sea lice, melting ice, and bed bugs.

  • I'd be more worried about going back into the room after what they used to kill them :)

    • Yeah made it clear today were not moving back to the old room.

  • +1

    Move Hotels. Full refund.

  • +1

    I thought that I had bedbugs in Thailand. I destroyed/dumped everything, including everything that I was wearing after showering and changing into new clothes at a new hotel. You don't want to take them home with you. That was my priority, and not seeking compensation. It turned out that I had an allergy to something and not bedbugs. However I don't beat myself up over it. My experience was that, what I thought were bed bug bites, was balanced on my body, and formed a pattern, rather than random spots.
    Bashster33 is correct, don't go anywhere where bedbugs have been treated. If the treatment was successful, then it will have residue that is extremely toxic (People died in a fumigated hotel in Thailand). If the treatment was unsuccessful, then you may get bedbugs plus poisoning.

    • Jeez, thats a fear. I reiterated we didnt want to be put back in my old room. They said, "it depends on room availability" but they'll check. Doesnt sound too promising.

      I have photos and a video of the bed bugs. Even a video of an alive one on the couch. So definitely bed bugs, plus was confirmed by pest control.

      • Yukky!! You poor things! i would ask for a Full Refund and move hotels. !!

      • If they or their eggs are in your gear, then you will be taking them home. They are extremely hard to eradicate.

        • Yeah, the bed bugs were quite literally everywhere. On the floor around the couches in the living room as well as in the bedroom. I don't really feel like anything is safe. My down jacket is currently in the freezer fml…

          • +1

            @Coatesy: You took a down jacket to Vanuatu?

            • @GG57: Just for the plane and we werent sure about what it would be lile if we stay on a mountain etc. On reflection. It was a bad idea.

  • Does wash it with methylated spirit help? It quite strong though

    • Seems like the only thing that really works is really high or low temperatures. The problem is the eggs. The actual bugs are a bit easier to kill but the eggs are invisible to the naked eye and they take 10-14 to hatch. Plus they can lay a few hundred eggs every few days. So even if we dont get bitten for a few days theres no gaurantees that the eggs arent all through our clothes.. :(

  • +3

    Sorry that you are going through this nightmare. Please name and shame them on tripadvisor.
    If staying in a town/hotel that I haven't been to before, I now always search 'bed bugs' on Tripadvisor.

  • Having stayed in several places with bedbugs at various times all over the world, I feel your pain. They are nasty little buggers.
    Don't chuck all your stuff. As others have said, very hot wash (or boil if you can) you clothes. Steaming should deal with them in suitcases and delicate clothes. Travel insurance is not going to cover them if you just chuck them out.
    Bedbugs also don't care where they stay, so they are just as likely to be found in 5 star accommodation as in a hostel. In fact New York has one of the
    worst rates of bedbugs in the world.
    They are just as much (if not more) of a problem for the hotel that for you. Travelers bring them in and then they have to deal with it. They are also really hard to spot, so until someone gets bitten, they go unnoticed.
    Sounds like they have done everything they can in offering to wash and steam your stuff and have the room fumigated. I think its probably fair to ask for the cost difference between rooms, but you are not entitled to anything. If they are looking to try and keep you happy they may throw in something like a meal for free as a sorry for the inconvenience token.
    Just (try to) forget about it and try to enjoy your time in an interesting country. Add it to your travel horror story collection :)

  • Your Update 1 sounds really good of them…

    Bedbugs are terrifying and a real nuisance . I remember a friend stayed over at my place for couple of days and few weeks later found few bed bugs. As it was still early stage I used diatomaceous earth powder and managed to get rid of them.

    • +1

      Politely ask them not to visit to anymore and stay in a hotel.

  • Update 2 = Ants.

    Can't wait for Update #3 when we get to the flying cockroaches.

  • Ouch this sucks! If they don't satisfy you definitely put it on trip advisor and google maps they may change their tune quick.
    I'm glad I tend not to stay too long in one place. I get bored of the area and the breakast so I usually stay max 5 nights in one place. In my hostel days this used to be a 2 night max…

  • Yeah, bed bugs suck big time.

    I encountered them in an apartment I staying in 2-3 nights on the Gold Coast. The welts appear like a day or so later so it's hard to work out what was going on.
    I thought it was fleas first because it was really itchy. But I remember seeing the bed bugs, they look like ants but not.

    I am still traumatised by the incident and paranoid about staying in hotels etc.

    This was more than 10 years ago.

    When I got home, it messed with my head that I brought them back and was really paranoid I brought them back.

    In the end, the luggage I threw out.

    The clothes I had sealed into garbage bags, to wait out the bugs would die and the eggs die too.
    To this day more than 10 years, the clothes are still in the bags, I am sure they are dead now. But I'd better throw them out now I think.

    All the best.

    It's is not really the hotels fault, it's travellers from around the world that the bed bugs travel with.

    Bring back DDT.

    • Hahaha thats a comforting story… yeah we're tossing up whether to dump the clothes. I think the suitcases will be gone. I know ill be paranoid if i being stuff back.

      We also thought they were fleas and mosquitoes!

      • You don't need to dump them, just quarantine them for 10 years. I am waiting a bit longer just to be sure. Lets see who dies first me or them, I am going to wait them out.

        Boil, microwave, freeze your clothes.

        They said they were ants, they look like ants, ants don't live in your bed head! Bed bugs live in the mattress and bed frames and maybe side tables.

        When the welts are in rows, it's bed bugs. I think I had about 20 bites. My wife (girl friend at the time), her welts took a few days or more to come up so at the time, she thought I had an allergic reaction to something because she was fine. I must be more sensitive or my immune system is weak.

        If you are in staying in a hotel, make sure you use the luggage stands and maybe keep your bags off the floor away from the bed.
        Keep your bags zipped up, maybe keep your clothes in your bags, I know some people like unpack everything and put in it the wardrobe and draws. Don't.

        Just with my story, it was like 9-12hrs later I started getting itchy, (at the Gold Coast), I was at Dracula's, I started getting itchy, I thought was flea bit me there.

        An experience I still have not forgotten… Sorry for you experience… We were just thinking of going to Vanuatu (or Fiji) too, let me rethink that.

  • We had bed bugs in our unit, probably brought by family visiting from overseas. I can tell you that it's absolute hell if you only notice it after weeks of weird bites on your skin and they have probably infested every room…

    Anyway our solution to de-bugging our belongings was to put everything into those vacuum storage bags, then cycle them through the deep freezer so that every bag got 24 hours in the freezer. Vacuum bags because 1. they are airtight and 2. they freeze quicker. That, combined with bug-proof protectors for mattresses and spraying the unit, finally did the trick for us. The reason this is better than the dryer is you can put pretty much anything in the freezer, so none of our clothes were damaged and we also treated things like books and suitcases. Highly recommend the freezer method if you can do it.

    Whatever you do, make sure it is thorough.

    • Technically it takes 3 days in a chest freezer to guarantee bedbugs are killed.

      But glad you got rid of them.

      • Oh actually we might have done 3 days, the memories have been suppressed.

    • Thanks for the tip. If we bring back our clothes itll be laundromat then the freezer. Though i live in an apartment and Im doubtful any of my family and friends will want me using their freezers… hahaha

    • Sorry for your experience.

  • Travel insurance?

    We had the same issue a few months ago. Had a cheap Airbnb and was so desperate for a clean place and good night sleep, booked remaining stay at the Grand Hyatt (with cashback and Amex cashback).

    My credit card insurance covered the additional costs. Later, Airbnb decided to do partial refund too.

    • Yeah we still need to check travel insurance we've been swamped at the hospital unfortunately :(

      • That sucks. Hope things get better soon.

        Keep all receipts - get in writing from hosp and hotel if possible stating the bed bugs and include the 'affected' dates

  • Poor you! I went to some relatives in France and stayed with them. They had bed bugs everywhere! We didn’t throw away the clothes but washed them and didn’t even clean suitcases. Luckily we did not bring them back, but I was very scared as well.
    They are horrible, very hard to rid of them.

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