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KnowBedBugs Newsletter Volume 18 (Nov/Dec 2019)

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NOBBEL, Inc.       Newsletter Vol. 18        December 2019  

Bedbug Headlines * Certified Property Spotlight * Educational Resources

Happy Holidays!


The season is upon us, and the Holidays are a very busy time of the year for travelers and hotels alike. Family and friends gather to give thanks, break bread, share memories and make even more. The season is wonderful, but it isn’t without it’s own troubles!

The gathering of people, in any place, presents the potential for bedbug introductions. Even the icy temperatures outside do nothing to stop bedbugs from spreading, as written about in this article from the NY Times. Still, there are steps you can take to avoid bedbugs, as well as steps you can take to deal with that hitchhiker you might have brought home, and we will provide you some resources in this newsletter.

Because of the busy travel season, most hotel properties will see an increase in bedbug issues along with the increase in guests. Loss of consumer confidence AND loss of revenue make bedbugs one of the hardest issues currently facing hoteliers. This is why we started NOBBEL, Inc.

NOBBEL, Inc is the National Organization of Bed Bug Education for Lodging. We offer expert bedbug training and certifications to the lodging industry to help battle online reviews and build consumer confidence. Concerned travelers can book rooms with our certified locations on our website at www.KnowBedBugs.com. 

Hotel owners/managers can Join our growing list of certified properties. 

See what some of our certified partners are saying.
 

NOW ONTO THE HEADLINES!…


 

 
 
  • Although called “bedbugs”, mattresses aren’t the only place to look
  • Do you think the airplane is safe?
  • Issues still reported after 10 day closure
  • Spot-Treatment approach was not working
  • Library heat-treating all returned books
  • Visual Inspections also conducted on each return

Bedbugs Close Nye County Courthouse

  • Bedbugs found in 1 area
  • All offices closed as precaution

High Schools are Increasingly Targets:
3 Stories of Bedbugs in the Classroom
Prevention Tips and some “DIY”
Okay, so bedbugs are really NOT a “DIY” pest when it comes to treatment. They are very good hiders, have shown growing resistance to chemicals, and over-the-counter sprays may kill the bugs you see, but do nothing for the eggs that you don’t! Still, there are some preventative steps you can take to avoid bedbugs, and there are a few methods you can use to keep the bugs at bay. 

First, you need to know what bedbugs are and how they operate. Get familiar with the signs of activity so you can know what to look for! Use this link to educate yourself!

Second: If you DID happen to bring bedbugs home with you after a trip, in your luggage, etc…Don’t Panic! Here are some tips to help keep them under control:
https://www.knowbedbugs.com/i-brought-bed-bugs-home-in-my-luggage-now-what/

For a general, all around education, “DIY” tips, and scientific information, we have found this blog from Calgary.com very helpful. Sleep Tight: A Complete Guide to the Impact, Identification and Treatment of Bedbugs

For Travel, you should always perform your own inspections. Take along our free checklist for bedbugs in hotels, and use it to inspect your hotel room before you even unpack!

For hotels and their employees, education is KEY to getting ahead of this pervasive bedbug epidemic. That is what we do at NOBBEL. Use this link to claim your hotel and start your certification training today!
CERTIFIED PROPERTY SPOTLIGHT
The following hotel properties have achieved their NOBBEL certifications. Any guest would feel better about staying in a bed bug certified property, confident that the staff is well-trained, and that the property has a plan!

Is YOUR property NOBBEL certified? Get more information or claim your property here.

 


Holiday Inn Palm Beach Airport
Palm Beach, FL 


 


Residence Inn Blacksburg – University
Blacksburg, VA




Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott Fayetteville North
Fayetteville, NC




Towneplace Suites Columbia Southeast / Ft. Jackson
Columbia, SC




Courtyard by Marriott Ocean City Oceanfront
Ocean City. MD


Guests can click “BOOK THIS HOTEL” on our site to reserve a room. We offer direct links to our certified properties websites, and do so at 0% commissions! Yet another reason to get your property certified today. Ready to get started? Claim your property here, or email us: info@knowbedbugs.com.

DID YOU KNOW:


Bedbugs produce a pheromone that give off an unpleasant, musky odor? It’s true. If your room smells terrible, these critters might be to blame!
 



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KnowBedBugs Newsletter Volume 17 (Oct 2019) (copy 01)

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NOBBEL, Inc.       Newsletter Vol. 17        October 2019  

Bedbug Headlines * Certified Property Spotlight * Did You Know?

It’s October, and that means Halloween is near! This time of the year is both fun, and yes, even scary for some. With frequent mentions of ghosts and ghouls, zombies and monsters, our imaginations run wild with creepy thoughts and horrific costume ideas. We think this costume, for instance, is about the scariest we have seen!

Why is this so scary? Just ask anyone who has battled bedbugs. Their diet consists of human blood, they are VERY hard to get rid of, and they can be expensive to get rid of, too! For this reason, it is important to become familiar with bedbugs, and the signs of bedbug activity. Our site has all of the information you need. Trust us, you don’t want this hitchhiker coming home with you!

Bedbugs are even MORE frightening to our friends in the hospitality industry. One negative review about bedbugs can cost a loss of consumer confidence. This equals a loss of money, aside from treatment costs, and make bedbugs one of the hardest issues currently facing hoteliers. This is why we started NOBBEL, Inc.

NOBBEL, Inc is the National Organization of Bed Bug Education for Lodging. We offer bedbug training, testing and certifications to the lodging industry to help battle online reviews and build consumer confidence. Concerned travelers can book rooms with our certified locations on our website at www.KnowBedBugs.com. Join our growing list of certified properties. See what some of our certified partners are saying.

In this harrowing issue:

  • Headlines: The latest SPOOKY bed bug news from across the country
  • Certified Property Spotlight: These properties won’t give you the chills!
  • Did You Know?: A little fact about bedbugs for that new wrinkle in your brain

Want to increase direct bookings? Increase profits? Concerned travelers can book rooms via direct links to our certified properties, commission-free! Join our growing list of certified properties.
 

11 BEDBUG HORROR STORIES
 
  • Submitted by REDDIT users who have battled bedbugs
  • Warning: These stories might make your skin crawl!
  • Even the Pest Control Professionals were shocked
  • The residents STILL slept on this mattress
  • How to handle an unresponsive landlord
  • Help alleviating the pesky critters
  • Baltimore hold down the Top Spot
  • East Coast occupies MANY of the Top Cities
  • Treatments are becoming more expensive as the bugs take hold
  • Is competition good for pricing? 
WHERE THERE ARE PEOPLE, THERE CAN BE BEDBUGS
Yes, hotels are a hotbed (no pun intended) for bedbugs to spread from one unsuspecting guest to another. But PEOPLE bring them into hotels. Hotels Are NOT to blame, and not the only place you find bedbugs!

Here are some other places bedbugs can be found:


Hospitals
Hospital restricts access to Cancer Center’s outpatient area due to bedbugs
Glens Falls, NY

School:
Call center employees told to work through bedbug inspection
Toronto, ON CANADA

The MVA or DMV:
Employees want answers after bedbug issues hit MVA branch
Parkville, MD

Entire School DISTRICT!:
Bedbugs force Western PA School district to close
Munhall, PA
CERTIFIED PROPERTY SPOTLIGHT
The following hotel properties have achieved their NOBBEL certifications. Any guest would feel better about staying in a bed bug certified property, confident that the staff is well-trained, and that the property has a plan!

Is YOUR property NOBBEL certified? Get more information or claim your property here.

 


Holiday Inn Columbia-East Jessup
Columbia MD 


 


Hyde Beach Resort & Residences
Hollywood FL




Sleep Inn & Suites Marion – Military Institute
Marion, AL




Showboat Hotel
Atlantic City, NJ




Beach View Hotel
Rehoboth Beach DE


Guests can click “BOOK THIS HOTEL” on our site to reserve a room. We offer direct links to our certified properties websites, and do so at 0% commissions! Yet another reason to get your property certified today. Ready to get started? Claim your property here, or email us: info@knowbedbugs.com.

DID YOU KNOW:
Bedbugs ARE visible to the naked eye, even the eggs. Still, for inspections, be sure to use a flashlight and magnifying glass to help you find signs of their activity.
 
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I Brought Bed Bugs Home in My Luggage: Now What?

Just return from a trip to find that bed bugs hitched a ride with you? If so, it can be quite unsettling. Bed bugs are notorious for being a difficult pest to control. And once a population “sets up shop” in your home and starts breeding, bed bugs can also be an expensive pest to eradicate. Complete evacuation of bed bugs can often mean a price tag in the thousands. But don’t panic! A few hitchhikers does NOT have to turn into a full-blown infestation. By using the following tips, you can increase your odds of avoiding a multi-generational bed bug infestation.

HEAT vs PESTICIDES: The Best Bed Bug Treatment for Hotels & Homes

If you have been unfortunate enough to have battled bed bugs, then you completely understand how difficult treatment can be. A quick search on the web for bed bug treatments can leave you dizzy with suggestions, choices and opinions.  Many websites tout home-based remedies such as diatomaceous earth, steam cleaning, vacuum cleaning, etc. There are also many over-the-counter products (too many to name in fact) that promise to “kill bed bugs overnight” or offer a “1-time bed bug treatment”. So who and what information do you trust?

Bed Bugs: Separating Fact from Fiction

Undoubtedly, if you are reading this blog, you have heard about the resurgence of bed bugs. We have written about the pests’ rapid increase in numbers as it effects the hotel industry and it’s guests, discussed the usefulness of the bedbug registry, and commented on housekeeping duties and training to help alleviate guest incidents, among other topics. And we are not the only website writing on the subject. A search for “bed bugs” on Google yields over 7,210,000 results! That is a LOT of information. Unfortunately, not all of the information can be trusted. 

HOTEL HOUSEKEEPING: ON THE FRONT LINES IN THE WAR AGAINST BED BUGS

There have been bed bugs for thousands of years, and at least as long as people have been sleeping. However, the use of DDT nearly wiped out the now-common pest in the 40s, 50s and 60s. But DDT use was banned here in the United States in 1972, and the resurgence of bed bugs began. Within the last 10 years in specific, bed bugs have made a dramatic comeback.  According to a 2015 Bugs Without Borders Survey conducted by the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) and the University of Kentucky, homes are still overwhelmingly the #1 place where pest control professionals battle the bugs. In second place, nearly 3/4 (74%) of pest control professionals have also battled infestations in hotels, motels and resorts. This explains the rise of consumer concern around bed bugs (a good thing) as well the the proliferation of websites like the Bed Bug Registry (not a good thing!) Hotels, motels and resorts are on the front lines of this battle, and need to be proactive. Having a well trained housekeeping staff is the best place to start!

RESORT AREAS ON ALERT: WHERE THE TOP 50 BED BUG CITIES VACATION

If you were paying attention over the last couple of weeks, you probably noticed that bed bugs are still a hot topic for news headlines across the country. Thankfully for the hotel industry AND it’s guests, the focus has shifted from the lodging industry and headlines are now discussing the growing bed bug problem in our nation’s schools. Even in the nation’s capital, a school had to be closed for bed bug and rodent issues.

At the same time, as Spring approaches and we start to make plans for our Summer vacations, focus will undoubtedly shift back to bed bugs in hotels, motels and resorts. They may already be a factor in your travel decisions. The concerned traveler may be familiar with Orkin’s annual list of the ‘Top 50 Bed Bug Cities‘, and may try to avoid destinations on the list. The pest control company based the ranking on treatment data collected from the areas it performed the most bed bug treatments between December 1, 2015 and November 30, 2016. Before you go changing travel plans, however, remember that this list includes residential as well as commercial treatments. You might want to ask yourself this question instead: Where do the people who live in the cities on this list travel? Where do they take their vacations? Are they taking bed bugs with them?

DON’T TRUST THE BED BUG REGISTRY: WHAT CONSUMERS NEED TO KNOW

Whether you are a concerned traveler, a hotel owner, or a property manager, certainly you are aware of the growing bed bug epidemic. In fact, 1 out of 5 Americans has had a bed bug infestation in their home or knows someone who has encountered bed bugs at home or in a hotel according to a 2011 study. More than likely, those numbers have increased in the 5 years since. Yet as our previous blog stated, this epidemic does NOT rest firmly on the shoulders of the lodging industry. Hotels did not invent bed bugs. Bed bugs are in hotels because guests bring them in, plain and simple. Responsibility lies on the guests AND the lodging industry to help halt the growth of the epidemic.

HOTELS, MOTELS AND THE BED BUG REGISTRY: COOPERATION NEEDED

We have all heard horror stories about dirty hotels, complete with filthy sheets, broken appliances and front desk staffs that didn’t seem to care. As we mentioned in our 1st blog, bed bugs are steadily becoming a mainstay in these stories. For many guests, bed bugs are a cleanliness issue, with the perception being that a clean, upscale hotel would not have bed bugs. After all, THOSE types of problems are much more characteristic of smaller motels, and cheaper roadside inns. Although that perception IS starting to change, the process is slow. In the meantime, hotels with reported bed bug issues, such as those listed on the Bed Bug Registry, are fighting to save their reputation, and in some cases, their businesses. Even our President Trump’s OWN Doral Hotel is being sued by a guest over bed bug bites. The decision was expected by inauguration. The Miami Herald published photos of the guest’s bites:

Bed Bug Training Can Help Hotels Battle a Bed Bug Registry Listing.

As you well know, there has been  a rise in bed bug infestations in the United States. Hotels and the lodging industry as a whole are on the front lines in the battle against this determined pest. In fact,  according to the 2015 “Bugs Without Borders” survey conducted by the University of Kentucky and the National Pest Management Association, 64% of pest control professionals report that bed bug infestations continue to be on the rise, and 74% encountered infestations specifically in hotels and motels. Several sites now act as a bed bug registry, listing consumer’s reports of bed bug encounters at hotels throughout the country. Often, these sites offer little or no recourse for the hotels. The posts stay on these sites indefinitely, causing damage (sometimes irreperably) to the hotel’s reputation. Concerned consumers stear clear of hotels on a bed bug registry, even when the problem may have been remedied. Now, those same consumers will have a new site to help alleviate the growing concerns of encountering bed bugs during their travels. And finally, the hotels listed on a bed bug registry will have some recourse.