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Whether vacationing to take a break from your grueling job or spending time away from winter months as a retired snowbird, a trip to the tropics or a warmer climate certainly has its appeal. Sunbathing on a serene beach, strolling along boardwalks or cobblestones to browse quaint shops, or experiencing fresh seafood or more exotic cuisines all have their charm.

However, not only humans enjoy sultry climates. If you are traveling south, you will need to be mindful of not bringing insects and pests home with you.

Packing for your return trip:

Of course, when you’re packing your swimsuit and cargo shorts, you don’t even want to think about preparations for your return home. However, you will be glad you prepared once the time comes to get ready for your trip back.

Plastic or cloth garment bags are readily available to sort or safely store clothing and toiletries in your suitcase. Make sure to include a variety of sealable plastic bags to separate not only dirty clothes but also to avoid spreading any infestation.

When unpacking your clothing at your dream destination, it is best to keep your garments in protected bags when placing them in drawers. There is also travel spray available to guard against bed bugs and other insects.

How to handle your luggage once you return home:

Depending on your schedule and personality, you might decide to take a nap or open up your work laptop once you’ve arrived home from your trip. But, before relaxing or delving back into “real” life, here are a few tips which could potentially save you from massive headaches and bills:

  • If you’re returning to a northland area, keep your luggage in an outside area for several hours or overnight before you start unpacking. Unzip the luggage slightly to let the cold air into the bag. Most insects, eggs, and larvae can’t handle temperatures below 37 degrees Fahrenheit. Killing bed bugs requires a frigid temperature of zero degrees or colder.
  • Once unwanted traveling companions are sufficiently frozen, your clothing is ready to be laundered. Of course, you will want to wash any dirty laundry, but it is a hot dryer which will finish off any persisting insects, especially bed bugs.
  • If you don’t happen to live in a cold weather climate, vacuum your luggage and place it in a large plastic garbage bag. Launder and dry your clothes using a hot dryer as soon as possible.


Clothing and linens are not the only places pests might hitch a ride. Make sure you’re protecting your intestines, especially if traveling abroad or someplace exceptionally warm.

Check with your doctor before leaving about prescribing a parasite prevention treatment. You should also be sure to avoid walking around barefoot on floors or streets once you reach your destination. Additionally, make sure you’re drinking filtered water and if you want to partake in street food, make sure it is deemed clean and sanitary. Lastly, check in with a local healthcare professional or pharmacists for parasite treatment methods if symptoms develop while on vacation.

Double check your pets:

Whether Fido is making the trip with you or can’t wait to see you when you get back, schedule a timely vet appointment to make sure he hasn’t picked up anything either externally or internally.

If you still find yourself with unwanted living souvenirs, don’t hesitate to contact us for professional assistance to get your home back to normal.

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