Bed Bugs and the rugby World Cup

I don’t really want to start this thread but I will, because it might impact sitters and home owners’ lives in the coming weeks more than we would like. I also happen to have been a victim of these little bugs 12 yrs ago, so I know they’re no joke.
If you haven’t heard the news, there is a little bed bug problem in Paris, or France in general. The issue is that as Paris Fashion Week and the Rugby World Cup both attract a lot of people to France, these visitors also will eventually go home, with perhaps little bug visitors in their luggages if they aren’t careful. Not that Paris isn’t attracting already lots of foreign tourists, but it looks like the spotlight on the BB pb has been put on the Rugby World Cup and fashion week. Also, BB were never a new pb, they had them back in 2011, and not just in France, let’s be honest.
I do not want people to fear anything. You also might think because you have no sit planned in France, so you’re ok, but a word of warning: if you plan to sit in the UK, which has a train connection with France, among others, you might be impacted. How? By flight being delayed and-or, noticing a bug or 2 in a public space, or reading something about it in the news. Do I suspect flights will be delayed, grounded, planes evacuated, etc.? I don’T know, but lately, the aviation industry has shown its fair share or problems (August 29th in the UK anyone?) so everything is possible.

I am not reporting on the news, which could be fear mongering (“planes will be grounded and flights cancelled if a super bug is found onboard” - what’s super about it? the size? the speed? the quantity?), I am writing in this forum as it is a traveller’s issue. My BB attack in a rental apt in a tourist area of Paris in 2011 was before Airbnb so I had no help from the owners. I got badly bitten one night and had to go to the health clinic. I spent the next 2 nights wide awake, going insane, sitting on a chair with my feet up. I put all my laundry to wash at 90c, and 12 kilos didn’t make it…(2011 was not a Ryanair type of year where light travels were “suggested”). The worst was not knowing if I had abandoned them behind, or not and was frighten to bring any back home. I didn’t.
If you travel anywhere (we should always do that, but especially now, that it is in the spotlight and might affect travellers and travels in general), make sure you elevate your luggage if you are in a hotel room, put them in the bathtub and check the mattress for signs. If you are pet sitting, please please before you get to the owner’s home, make sure nothing is stuck to your backpack or luggage, and avoid putting these on the ground, as much as possible, in a public transport place such as train stations, airports etc.
There are a million things we can mention about this subject, but the main concern is that because both pet parents and sitters travel, one cancellation or flight delay on one end could bring a lot of headaches, so best to be aware of this travel situation, give ourselves more times before our flight lands (in case of a delay) and the start of our pet sit, etc.
I hope this will not become a global thing, but these days, who knows.

They are already in Sweden (and probably before the rugby, which is not big there). A friend who works in a Red Cross thrift store warned for bed bugs in second-hand furniture.

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oh don’t get me wrong: every single country in the world has them!
But in the next few weeks, we might get flights cancellation due to the fact that it is highlighted in the news and more people are aware of it.
Bed Bugs, and bugs in general have been travelling for free for decades!

Glad I just spent six weeks+ in the UK, with a side trip to Paris, without any such hassles!

About a year ago, I encountered bed bugs in a San Francisco hotel once that I had repeatedly stayed at before without problems. Got a bunch of bites. Happily switched rooms and stayed at another Bay Area hotel after on that trip and didn’t bring any home.

A friend of mine ordered a new bed frame years ago that turned out to have been delivered in a truck with bed bugs. His home ended up infested and he and his wife spent months getting rid of them. They had to put all their books in plastic containers, wash all of their clothes on high heat and such. It’s made him paranoid about bed bugs now.

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I empathise with your friend’s situation, as an infestation is a disaster and costly. They never go away, and then you go insane.
Their bites can make you really sick if you’re unlucky and your mental health can really take a toll. To be honest, I’d rather encounter them in a hotel, aka outside of my house. I prefer to get rid of 10 kilos of clothes, if they don’t survive 90c wash, than having to throw out all my home furniture, curtains, etc.
For beds: once you have treated your mattress, putting vaseline on the legs (not all beds have them) blocks them from accessing the mattress. They don’t jump.
But still. Better to never have to deal with them.


Thanks for the tips on how to deal with bedbugs.

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Saw this today:

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This article was in yesterday’s The Guardian newspaper in the UK, snifferdogs are being deployed to seek out bedbugs in UK hotels and homes. :dog:

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