As a traveler, one thing that is certain is that you will be staying in many different places which also means sleeping in many different beds. This, unfortunately, comes with the risk of getting bit by bedbugs! Before I start, I just want to clarify that bedbug problems are just as likely to occur in a five-star hotel as they are in a budget hotel/motel/hostel/Airbnb.
In this blog, I’m going to share my experience during my stay at the Hotel the Globe in Amsterdam, Netherlands. Have you ever woken up in the morning feeling endlessly itchy? With no clue on how you ended up sharing a bed with an “extremely-affectionate-sex-crazed-creature” all night? I have! After my first night at Hotel the Globe, I had about 30 bedbug bites spread across my neck, legs, and arms. I remember, quoting to myself “I probably would’ve been better off sleeping on the street.” The picture below showcases my bites. I talked to the receptionist, first thing in the morning, after discovering these bites. However, they denied ever having a bedbug problem and tried to guarantee me that they were a bedbug free Hostel. Later when I read the reviews on the web and Facebook about this place, several prior guests had similar experiences.
How many bites can you spot on my neck? Leave answers in the comment section below.
So, I took the matter into my own hands! I spent that same evening going through my bed sheets, comforter, and bed frame looking for any evidence of their presence. The sheet that I laid on was white, so you would think it would be easy to spot blood splats or black marks. Nope, no luck.
The second night, I burrito-ed myself to sleep in hopes that no bug would be able to crawl in to bite me. Late into that night, my legs were itching…constantly! I woke up and inspected my clothes with my iPhone’s flashlight and noticed multiple red dots in a row on my legs/feet. That following morning, when I went to take a shower, I noticed a few more red dots on my arm and neck. They started to become redder and larger as the day went on. So, my curiosity piqued, and I decided to ask the seven other girls/guys I was sharing my room with whether they were feeling itchy too? However, none of them were experiencing any bites except me! So, I wondered, “Why were these bedbugs only biting me?”, “Are they attracted to me?”, and “Are they just picky on who they bite?” It turns out, after doing some research online, I found out that bedbugs are not picky at all their bites leave a reaction if your skin is sensitive or allergic to them. So, even though I was the only one with these reactions. I am pretty positive that everyone in my room was getting nibbled on by bedbugs at night; they just didn’t have bite bumps as evidence, like me.
As a result, I still suffer reoccurring nightmares from this dreadful experience. (Joking haha!) No, but really, I did feel itchy all over while writing this blog. Anyways, when planning my stays for my trips, between a hostel or a cheap hotel—I would definitely go with the hostel every time. Foregoing the traditional hotel route, especially in cases if I’m traveling alone, always have better long-lasting experiences. Hotel rooms are empty and inactive in life and character—I’ve grown to love staying in hostels for the simple fact that it gives you the chance to meet other solo travelers. Just make sure you stay at bedbug-free accommodations on your trips, look out for signs of bedbugs because you may not be sleeping alone. Unless, you’re like Drake…and hate sleeping alone!
I’m not a pest control professional by any means but here some helpful tips:
- Pack for protection. Bring a large plastic trash bag or two and store your suitcase in it to keep bedbugs out!
- Inspect your room. Don’t unpack immediately!
- Store your belongings safely!
- Look and inspect your belongings before you repack. Bed bugs love to hitch free rides.
- Wash everything!
I couldn’t help myself but to end this blog by reinstating a quote by Michael Palin: “Once the travel bug bites there is no known antidote, and I know that I shall be happily infected until the day.” Perfect quote right? Thanks Michael Palin for this quote, he flawlessly encapsulated how I feel about traveling in this one quote. Keep traveling as long as you can, don’t stop until you’re done.
Overall, I had a great time in Amsterdam except for getting bit alive. If you have ever got bitten by bedbugs, drop me a comment and let me know how your experience was and how you handled it. Or you can email me: firstname.lastname@example.org
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Happy Thanksgiving to those whom are celebrating!…. May you enjoy this celebration with your family full of laughter and peace!