Can this trip be saved? Bedbugs in my hotel room (and bad service — really bad service)

I am writing to describe the most horrible hotel stay I have ever endured in any hotel in my life,” the note began.

Well, that’s one way to get your attention.

The email, sent to the Comfort Inn Conference Center in Richmond, Va., detailed an unpleasant stay from start to finish. But let’s not bury the lede, as they say in journalism: The worst part, says Cricket Moore, was the discovery of a bedbug between her sheets.

She scooped up the insect, took a picture and brought it to the front desk.

“I was dumbfounded to discover that the hotel either had no procedures or had not trained its personnel how to handle a situation like this,” she says.

Before I get to the hotel’s efforts at resolving her bug problem, let’s put the issue in a little context. From the moment Moore arrived, she had trouble with her accommodations.

I was not so happy when I entered the room. I discovered heavy dust inside the TV cabinet, a radio that made loud crackling noises when I walked in front of it, a desk lamp missing a bulb, a toilet paper holder with no stick to hold the paper, a constantly running toilet, both black and orange mold in the corners of the bathtub, and a lavatory faucet that could not settle on either hot or cold water at any setting.

The sofa was stained and the blanket was dirty and pilled. I removed the comforter as soon as I entered the room.

Efforts to persuade the hotel to address some of these issues were to no avail. One request, in particular, was turned down flat – she asked for new sheets and towels with which to line the drawers, so she wouldn’t have to expose her clothes to the dusty dresser drawers.

“I was told that I’d asked for too many linens and that they do not triple sheet,” she says.

What followed was a sequence of events worthy of a Fawlty Towers episode, with Moore asking for one thing and the hotel either unable or unwilling to deliver it.

When she left, the hotel handed her a bill for the full amount — $293.

Since then, Moore has been in touch with the hotel’s owners, the Richmond City District and the Virginia Department of Health. She believes she shouldn’t have to pay $293 for an unclean, bedbug-infested hotel room.

I agree.

Did Comfort Inn do its to address the issues she experienced, or not? I’m sure the property would argue that it did.

But should it refund the entire $293? That might be asking for a little too much, as far as the hotel is concerned.

Moore doesn’t just want her money back. She’s also asking Comfort Inn to refund her entire group as well, to the tune of $1,300.

The list of things making their stay less than comfortable is too long to categorize, but includes insufficient linens, lack of paper products (even when team members went to the front desk to ask for replacements), less-than-cordial treatment by staff, humming noises in the rooms, lack of housekeeping services.

Hmm. Could any hotel be that bad?

I wasn’t there. But reviewing the entire grievance, including a request to refund $1,593 – I’m just not sure.

Update (6/1): I contacted Comfort Inn, and it apologized and refunded the $293.

(Photo: tsm all/Flickr Creative Commons)

Christopher Elliott

Christopher Elliott is an author, journalist and consumer advocate. You can read more about him on his personal website or contact him at Got a question or comment? You can post it on the new forum.

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  • Tom

    Something about Crickets post bugs me. The laundry list of complaints — bug, dust, noise, leaky plumbing, mold, missing bulb, toilet paper trouble, not providing enough sheets etc. That she with all the issues and her many unanswered complaints, she slept over anyway. Her letter doesn’t pass the sniff test to me. I would be interested in hearing whether she got full refunds at other hotels she has stayed at.

  • ouijesuis

    Since the article did not address this issue, it’s hard for me to side with her…but why did she stay to begin with? Was there no other accommodations available in the area? I once checked into a hotel for a wedding, saw the venue and room in particular — turned right back around and asked to check out with a full refund. The hotel must have that happen all the time because the front desk refunded me without a question. Staying in a “bed bug infested” room and then asking for a refund later doesn’t make sense to me. 

  • John Frenaye

    I think there is too much missing here Chris. One bedbug does not an infestation make–were there more? Did the other guests have similar issues? Dust in the TV cabinet (was it behind the television?)

    To be honest, it sounds like this woman came into the hotel looking for a freebie and come hell or high water, was going to find something to justify it.

    Did she ask for a new room? How long did she stay?

    The hotel may owe her something (moldy bathroom, bedbug), but it seems there is more here.

  • Trey

    “Since then, Moore has been in touch with the hotel’s owners, the Richmond City District of the Virginia Department of Health.”

    If this is written correctly, part of the problem is she’s dealing with a distressed property owned by the local Dept. of Health. I’d guess guest services are not a core competency.

    Also, why was she staying there?

  • Arizona Road Warrior

    “Could any hotel be that bad?”- – – – — – – – It is the # 74 hotel out of 85 Richmond, VA hotels in the TripAdvisor Popularity Index.  82% of the reviews (34 total reveiws) won’t recommned the hotel.

    At Virtualtourist, only 24% enjoyed their stays at this hotel.

    At Yahoo Travel, the reviews talked about bed bugs as far back as 2009 and lousy service far back as 2007 and bad rooms as far back as 2005.

    As I have commented before,you can’ts please everyone but a hotel should be able to please 80% of their guests.  If they can’t…the hotels have problems.  If the hotel doesn’t have a 80% recommendation rate or higher, I usually won’t book the room at that hotel.

    In this case, only 18% of the TripAdvisors reviewers would have recomended this hotel to others and ony 24% of the reviews at Virtualtourist enjoyed their stays.  This should have been red flags to the OP if she did some research.  It took me five minutes to find the above information.

    Chris, I think that you should mediate.  However, the OP has some responsibilities.  Why did the OP selected this hotel?  What type of research did she did?  It is my guess that it was the price (which it was the lowest in a search that I did at Orbitz) and/or that it was close to the University (there are ten hotels within 3 miles, 1.0 to 2.9, of this hotel and several of them were in the top 20 TripAdvisor rankings for Richmond, VA).

  • Svining

    Had she just been asking for herself, I would have said yes, go to bat for her. But asking refunds for her entire group — who may or may not have had similar problems — made it a “no” in my book.

  • Arizona Road Warrior

    I found bed bugs has been reported in hotel reviews going back to 2009.

  • Arizona Road Warrior

    It is my guess that she and her group had a conference at the hotel or was attending a conference at the University.  It is my guess that she was there for four nights based upon the rates that I saw on the Internet.  Also, it is my guess that she chose this hotel on price since there are several other hotels nearby this hotel but their prices were 25% to 100%+ higher.

  • Cliffordpwoodrick

    Bedbugs are nasty critters because you should leave your luggage and clothing in your garage. If you do not do this expect these critters in your home. Wash all clothing or have them dry cleaned. Your luggage must be put in a very high temperature to clear these bugs out.

    Our problem was Scabies which we picked up at one of three quality hotels. I wrote all three hotels but never received a response. This treatment was washing the sheets and bedding at home plus two days a week apart sitting nude with some stuff smeared in your hair and all over your body for three hours.

    There are many types of critters out there. My friend brought home fleas.

    Have a wonderful day – Cliff

  • Raven

    I was with her until she asked for ALL of her groups’ money back. That’s just greedy and hey, if it was so bad, why not check out after the first night and stay at another property? I’m sure there are plenty in the Richmond area.

  • Elizabeth Smith

    First of all, gross. I would have asked for different rooms and/or departed the hotel immediately upon discovery of all of these issues. I need more information, though. Does she have pics of or document in some way the other issues like the mold, dust, and missing items? Why in the heck did she and her group stay there, after all of this? That being said, I think you should mediate this case for the sake of ALL travelers that might be tempted to select this DUMP in the future. However, I don’t think she necessarily deserves the entire amount refunded, as for some reason, she and the group decided to stay there. Ew.

  • Ndonbrown

    Welcome to one of the worst hotel chains in the country.  Question is why did she not check out IMMEDIATELY and contact her credit card company explaining she was challenging ALL charges? The difference between Choice and W is more money and at least W staff ‘pretend’ to want to help.

  • Flippy

    Yes, the hotel had problems. But this isn’t worthy of a $1000+ refund. This roody-poo OP should just escalate it with the hotel, and she will get something back, as long as she isn’t unreasonable or greedy

  • Jenn Beard

    I recently stayed in a hotel in Omaha that had a perfectly maid-made bed that when we pulled down the covers to sleep had food in the sheets. We called down to have the bed re-made. Because we were at a conference there were not many other rooms to be had. We were grossed out the whole time wondering what else hadn’t been properly cleaned. I worked as a chambermaid at a Day’s Inn one summer in high school and I know how corners were sometimes cut there. I guess it’s kind of like eating out at a restaurant – you know the kitchen might be dirty but you can’t obsess about it.

  • Brooklyn

    You should mediate it, but as an entire group is involved she might do better in court; that way, it’s more likely that the hotel will have to FIX the problems, some of which sound like health code violations. 

  • Brooklyn

    It was a conference center and she was with a group.  Sounds like a (gasp) CONFERENCE to me!  You can’t just pick one of those up and move down the street.  Why are people less willing to believe that all these things are wrong than if only one of them was wrong?  I see a perfectly credible pattern here – the uncaring staff makes it easy to believe the filth and Cricket’s anger.  She tried, she complained, it did no good – it’s time to lawyer up (or the equivalent: Chris). 

  • Watson

    She actually stayed in that hotel after discovering mold and bedbugs???  No, she doesn’t get a refund.  I would have sooner slept in my car then in that bad of a hotel room.  Surely there were other hotels she could have stayed at whether she was with a group or not.
      One time, years ago, we tried to check into a hotel with a group of people attending a wedding.  Our room was so disgusting that I made my husband move to a different hotel away from the rest of the group.   He wasn’t too happy with me, but I was not staying in a room that gross. 

  • Joe Farrell

    Its a Comfort Inn – what did you expect?  Once again you need the names and times and dates of all the people you speak too – bed bugs?  yeah, so what?  appears to be the attitude . . .

  • Chelseagirl98

    It’s very difficult to say whether the group (and by “group” I have to assume that is was five people, since her bill was for $300 and the total for the group was $1,600) should be refunded because most of the information we have is about her room and her experience, not those of the other group members. It certainly sounds like a bad place to stay and the staff members don’t seen to know anything about customer service. While it is not so easy for a group of five to quickly find another place to stay, they could have at least made the attempt if the place was so bad. I’ve stayed at lots of bad places (before I knew about Trip Advisor) and never thought to ask for a refund. But now there would be no excuse for me to choose a bad place because I always check TA. She should have done the same. I vote “no” on the refund.

  • Nancy Marine Dickinson

    Brooklyn – on most boards on the internet, people get caught up in the minutiae and don’t bother to move past that.

    A fictitious example: 

    Statement: The gentleman in the green shirt was later killed in a car accident.
    Poster response: Why was he wearing a green shirt?  Why not red?  Or Blue?  I wonder if his wearing a green shirt had anything to do with the accident?  Perhaps if he had been wearing purple this might not have happened.  I was in an accident once wearing a yellow shirt and this didn’t happen to me. I wear yellow ALL the time and have NEVER had an accident.

    By the time the trivial and completely unimportant matters are resolved in their head, the rest of the world has moved so far past it, it’s become a distant memory.

    Why the OP didn’t leave is none of our business.  It’s not germane to the story.

    In an attempt to streamline this a bit – What IS germane is:

    1.  The OP was staying at the Comfort Inn Conference Center, Richmond, VA.
    2.  The OP was staying there as part of a group.
    3.  The OP, upon turning down their covers to go to bed, discovered a bed bug in their bed.  (And, yes, one bed bug signifies oh-so-many more)
    4.  The OPs toilet was broken and the water ran all the time.
    5.  The OPs drawers and the television armoire were covered in dust. (Though, let’s be fair, these are probably the least used things in a hotel room so, for them to be dirty, IMHO now the OP is picking nits)
    6.  The OPs water temperature fluctuated between hot and cold, with not a lot of grey area.  Always a fun way to take a shower.
    7.  The OPs bathroom was coated with mold.  It’s the Deep South, it’s humid, the hotel should know these things and take appropriate measures.
    8.  Other members in the OPs group had the same or similar problems.
    9.  Large conferences tend to fill up hotel rooms in the area of town where it’s being held.
    10. The hotel couldn’t have cared less regarding the problems there.

    Chris, sorry for doing this but people are getting lost in the details and that’s a MAJOR pet peeve of mine.  For some reason, focusing on what’s important is becoming a lost art.

    And, EW, bedbugs?  I’d have slept in my car before setting one toe in that bed.  Nasty stuff, those.

  • Jonathan

    I voted “yes” simply based on the degree of problems and apparent failure of the hotel to respond.  Simply put, the hotel seems to have failed to provide what was “contracted” for. 

    On the flip-side, I don’t have a heckuva lot of sympathy for the OP.  This property is profiled as a two-star (although that doesn’t excuse the bedbugs), but more importantly, they already have a pretty lousy (no pun intended) reputation based on the feedback on (of 34 respondents, only two gave Very Good or Excellent scores, six gave Average, and the rest (73%!) gave either Poor or Terrible scores!  I know some of you are highly skeptical about TripAdvisor, but the commentary reflects much of what the OP wrote (including one poor shlub who wrote “We fled in the middle of the night to get away from the bedbug infestation!”  Even when traveling for business trips, I check for first-hand feedback on properties.  The couple of times I haven’t, I’ve regretted it, when I realized I booked a dud and could have gotten a better one in close proximity and minimal price increase!

  • Absherlock

    I think you’re wrong and the fact and reason why she didn’t leave the room is incredibly germane. She has a responsibility to mitigate her damages and by deciding to remain there for the planned length of the trip and then demand a full refund PLUS that of her companions is not mitigation. It’s like getting a bad steak at a restuarant, complaining to the waiter but then finishing the whole thing before demanding a full refund for the whole table.

  • K.

    More likely that it’s a typo; my assumption is that the word “and” is missing. But you know what happens when you assume! :-)

  • Karla Katz

    A quick check with Trip Advisor, BEFORE booking, would have told the OP this was a dump.  Yes, there are a few good reviews, but several of them have the smell of the property owner’s shills pumping up the ratings.

  • Christopher Elliott

    Missing word. It’s fixed. Sorry about that.

  • Karla Katz

    Must disagree: One bedbug DOES an infestation make;  They’re not singular nomads.  Most experts agree that even one, is an indication that the place is infested (unless, of course, she just happened into a room, where a singular bedbug had just been deposited by a previous guest… not likely).

  • Karla Katz

    The Courts agree with you: she should have mitigated her damages, and moved to another property.  Then, she can file suit for return of her money.  You don’t eat the whole steak, and then ask for your money back ’cause it was too rare.

  • Sadie Cee

    Was this the only room available in Richmond at that time?  That is the only excuse I would grant the OP for spending the night in that terrible place.  Taking everything at face value, for me the litany of problems reported would be more than I could bear and the bug alone would have been sufficient reason for me to leave the place running. 

    Staying in hotel rooms, we are potentially exposed to the remnants, seen and unseen, from all the previous occupants of those rooms.  If we are unfortunate enough to pick up a skin condition for example, think of the agony and expense we will have to go through on our return home.  Add to that the obviously poor housekeeping, then we have a serious problem.

    She should have tried to find another hotel, checked out and asked for a refund.  If no refund was forthcoming, she should have left anyway but not before calling her credit card company and disputing the charge. Under no circumstances should she have slept in that room.  A bench in the train station would have been a step up!
    Despite her complaints, the OP stayed in the room and should pay.  She had the option to leave and did not.  Had she left, I would have recommended advocating on her behalf.  As for the refund for the OP’s entire group, she says nothing about their having encountered any adverse conditions in their accommodation.  If they didn’t complain about anything, then we must conclude that they were content.

  • bodega

    Where is the picture of the bedbug that she claims to have taken, to know if it actually was one?  Surely she must have sent that to Chris to back up her claim?

    If things were so bad, why did she stay?  Did the others in her group have issues where requesting a refund for everyone is needed?

    I do think that ‘housekeeping’ in hotels and motels has gone from bad to worst.  Maybe health inspectors should be making surprise checks!

  • Aaron

    Bedbugs are a real problem, but considering Ms. Moore’s laundry list of complaints, I can understand why the hotel didn’t take her seriously. This isn’t a particularly expensive hotel, and while it’s not right, things like dusty drawers and a bit of mold in the shower really aren’t all that out of the ordinary. What I don’t understand is why Ms. Moore didn’t leave and find a different place nearby — there are several comparably-priced or cheaper hotels in the area. And why does she want everyone to get her money back? This whole thing seems a bit fishy to me.

  • Sershev

    We were passing through New Mexico on a road trip and booked a three star hotel on hotwire. When we arrived to the hotel at 1 am it was filthy: sheets were stained, bathroom was dirty. We complained to the front desk, they said it was all they had. We asked for the refund and left. The hotel refunded money through hotwire and directed us to a newer and cleaner hotel down the street which was only $10 more per night for walk in rate compare to the hotwire rate we paid. BTW, hotwire rate was higher compare to walk in rate at the same property and even the property admitted it was a motel and not three star as hotwire marketed it. My point is, if I see a problem right away, why stay there?

  • flutiefan

    while i don’t feel a full refund for the entire party is warranted, i do believe that Chris should mediate on the OPs behalf, simply because the hotel seems to have failed to acknowledge her at all.

    as for “she should have known, had she done some research” arguments, that’s not the point.  that does not make it acceptable for the hotel to have bedbugs and mold, and for the hotel to ignore her.

  • skoc50

    While I agree Cricket had plenty of grievances against the hotel, my question is “why did she stay?”  If it was that bad and she still chose to stay on, the blame somewhat falls back on her.  I would have gotten the heck out of there if I found it that intolerable.  And then to expect a refund for the entire group?  Let them fight their own battles.  Stick with your own problems and don’t expect Chris to come and bail you out when you CHOSE to stay there in spite of the issues.

  • Carver

    I would agree except that how mitigate damages very factually specific.  You cannot speak about it without knowing more information 

  • Carver


    I hope you realize that you are effectively placing all the burden on the traveler and giving crappy places a free pasa          

  • Raven

    Virginia is not the Deep South. I live in the Deep South and I’ve stayed in plenty of motels/hotels over the years and have not had problems with mold. When I do, I COMPLAIN and CHECK OUT. 

    Fair word of warning: Do not EVER stay at the “Inn of the Hills” in Kerrville, TX. I went there for a conference once and the place was COVERED in mold. I checked out and went to the Hampton Inn up the street. I contested it with my credit card and won because I had photos of the mold on my phone. Oh, and I had photos of the BROKEN LOCK they had on my room door. A broken lock on an exterior corridor door? NO. The girl at the desk actually had the b*lls to say to me “Well, it’s a safe area.”Anyway, if I could find another place to stay in KERRVILLE, which is halfway between nowhere and hickville, I’m sure the OP could’ve found another place to stay in RICHMOND. Sheesh.

  • einsteinson

    ONE bed bug is NOT an infestation. that bed bug could have been carried in on the previous gust or even her luggage. bed bugs are relatively slow breeders.Ya right triple sheeting, like any hotel voluntarily does that. How anyone could even think of sleeping on a hotel bed without an allersac is beyond me. She should have left the room or hotel the minute she found any of the ills she described.

  • Arizona Road Warrior

    Without having all of the facts (i.e. Was she attending a conference?  Where was the conference? If she was attending a conference, was she the organizer? How large was the group?  Was a pre-paid reservation?  etc.), we all have to guess and make our assumptions.
    On one hand, I have stay at several hotels that had ‘Conference Center’ in their name but they had limited conference space (i.e. a room that could seat 20 individuals) and I wasn’t there to attend a conference or meeting.  It is like those small airports with NO international flights at all but they still have ‘International’ in their name.
    Given that this hotel is close to the University as well as its reviews on multiple sites, it is my guess that the OP and her group (which had 4 or 5 rooms…$1,300 divided by $ 293) was attending a conference at the University.
    Over the years, I have stayed at hotels for trade shows, symposiums, conferences, etc. that were not the event hotel or hotels.  I found hotels that were better than the event hotels in terms of quality; found hotels with cheaper rates; etc.  I walked or took taxis to the conference hall, etc.
    If the OP was the conference organizer, she should have complained to the sales manager.  If she wasn’t, she should have complained to the conference organizer.  I have done a few times when the conference organizer didn’t planresearch things (i.e. late check-out, shuttle service, etc.) since they were local.
    She might have been there to meet old friends from college.  Again, it is hard to tell.  I voted Chris to mediate but it would be nice to know the whole story.

  • Cory

    She’s a whiner and a complainer, and no amount of anything from hotel management would make her happy.  And when one complaint wasn’t answered she went hunting for more to complain about.  Dust in the TV cabinet!  OMG, horror of all horrors.  Line the drawers with sheets as their dusty!  When will the nightmare end?  She makes no claim that others in her party were complaining, so she thought she’d do it for them.  I wouldn’t have wasted the space on this letter…

  • SDNY

    It says she’s been in touch with the owners, the city district and the department of health, yet there’s no information about when she contacted them and if anyone has responded. I thought Chris only became involved as a last resort?  I find her demands suspect, she stayed multiple days and is now demanding a refund for her entire group? The only thing she didn’t do was threaten calling a lawyer. I think Chris should stay out of it.

  • Pat J

    I have become a fanatic about this subject.  I decided to > check the hotel you wrote about on> The news is not good. The posts are from last year, but many people > either do not know about this registry or do not take the time to write in.>  Here are some letters from people about the Comfort Inn Conference > Center in VA:=====================================================>> B W ! on 05/23/2010>> I stayed at this hotel on May 20-21 in room 220 a friend of mine > stayed in room 218. I woke up the next morning with a mild case of > bites , went home woke up the next morning with several bites on my > arm. This hotel def has bed bugs and I am so mad i stayed here, my arm > looks terrible. I have contacted the manager and of course she does > not work weekends so i left her a message. I am going to make sure i get a FULL REFUND.>> ________________________________>> s.j on 03/27/2010>> I stayed at this hotel and came in counter with bed bugs. I stayed on > the 5th floor. I thought this was a nice hotel but guess i change my > mind. I really hope that this problem gets fixed>> ________________________________>> J on 03/27/2010>> Room 506. They told me they had never had this happen before, but it > was obvious that this was a well entrenched infestation, as my husband > jumped out of bed at 2am with about 10 adult bedbugs all over him and > blood everywhere.>> ________________________________>> LW on 10/21/2008>> Found tiny red bug running up page of book, squashed it, left a big > blob of blood. Wasn’t a tick, mosquito or flea. Wasn’t sure it was a > bedbug either, so didn’t say anything, but shortly after that saw a > bug running out from under the pillow. Trapped it, looked online, and it definitely was a bedbug.> My daughter, who has had to deal with bedbugs, said the first one was > probably a hatchling after its first feeding. Took the second bug down > to desk clerk, they were very apologetic, moved us to another room, > gave us the entire stay free, and couldn’t have been nicer about it. > But now we have them at home. It was room 303, the one we always stay > in at that hotel (we stay there frequently). So we may have taken them > home with us from a previous visit, but we didn’t start getting bitten > until after the time we actually saw them there. I had checked the > mattress, picture frames, nightstand, etc., but the headboards are > secured to the wall and you can’t see behind them.======================================================> My husband and I stayed at a hotel in Estes Park CO a few > weeks ago and after we made our reservation I decided to check the > registry.  I notified the hotel via e-mail about my concern and they > assured me it was not bed bugs, that some “bat bugs” were found in an > adjacent building in one room and it was a disgruntled employee.  We > did go. I checked and saw nothing…but I still check.>>> We will be going to Italy and Russia over a four week period soon and, > rest assured, I will continue to do my bed bug check. I learned from > the bed bug registry how to do a good exam of the room.> weeks ago and after we made our reservation I decided to check the > registry.  I notified the hotel via e-mail about my concern and they > assured me it was not bed bugs, that some “bat bugs” were found in an > adjacent building in one room and it was a disgruntled employee.  We > did go. I checked and saw nothing…but I still check.>>> We will be going to Italy and Russia over a four week period soon and, > rest assured, I will continue to do my bed bug check. I learned from > the bed bug registry how to do a good exam of the room.

  • Wyoming1949

    And even with those good reviews figured-in the place gets a dismal 80% DISapproval rating.  Those who have been so quick to dismiss the OP as a “whiner,” I suppose, will say the negative Trip Advisor ratings are part of a “mass conspiracy” against this property!

  • Waynedaytonmedia

    Time for Steve Joyce at Choice Hotels, rather than self-aggrandizing his importance on Undercover Boss, to actually step up, be seen, go to this property, do a personal site inspection, and, if warranted, strip them of their Choice flag immediately.  Brand integrity is what it’s all about, and it sounds like this Comfort Inn is doing a disservice to all franchisees in the system

  • Wrona

    Except that there have been reports of bed bugs at this property going back to at least 2009 – definitely something more than a previous guest bringing in a single bed bug.

  • einsteinson

    Believe me, I’m not defending this hotel, just saying that one bed bug is not an infestation. I am completely paranoid about bed bugs and scabies as I have experienced both in hotels. I was bitten badly 3 years ago in motel in northern Florida and contracted scabies in a hotel in New Jersey 2 years ago. After the bed bug attack i did my research and began inspecting my room. Nothing prepared me for scabies because you can’t see them easily and are hard to report or prove because scabies doesn’t show right away. Now I don’t trust any hotel, hence the allersac. I also put all my luggage in garbage bags and don’t even put my clothing in the drawers, and spray my luggage with a luggage sanitizer to make sure I don’t bring anything home with me

  • Philip

    Any inconvenience at a hotel one is staying at, where you are paying a premium price, and there is a problem, such as bedbugs, is and should be the responsibility of the hotel to make the stay pleasant and ‘right’ and rectified immediately.
    These problems are becoming more predominant; bedbugs, sheets not changed for the next occupant, dirt and mold, etc. should not be tolerated.
    Where there is a hotel clerk or manager who is not responsive, as some have noted above, and the mattress, for example is loaded with bedbugs, what is the legality of hauling the sheets and mattress (yes, the mattress) down to the front desk and dumping it on them?  I doubt they would call the police because that would publicize their deficiencies.
    Remember the cry, “I am mad as hell, and won’t take it anymore?” The more people speak up, the quicker the change, and their problem will not end up on a Chris Elliot column.
    I once stayed at a hotel in India where there was feces in the palm pots in the halls.  I stayed in a (hostel) room in Calcutta that was built under the staircase that was a tad bigger than the bed.
    As horrible as some experiences are, you can live thru them as long as you are not murdered in bed!
    A suggestion I have, as I will do, is to take along large plastic tie bags that encase your luggage (as soon as you pass thru TSA); maggots were found in the overhead carry-on baggage compartments.  And to use it, as well, in and out of your hotel room so that you don’t bring home unwanted ‘guests’.

  • MikeZ

    I agree 100% with this. It doesn’t matter how cheap the room was, what on line site she reserved through, or anything else. The room should be clean and free of pests. the price a hotel gets depends on its other amenities and the quality of the furnishings.

    As far as “mitigating the damages”, she may have been in an unfamiliar area or it could have been a large enough conference where other local hotels were sold out. if this conference was during a college event, that could explain a lot. Also, she may not have had the available funds on a card or in cash. If you are attending a conference, any way to wash up and get ready is far better than going without while living in your car for 4 days. How absurd that people think someone lives in their car for 4 days while attending a conference with co-workers. Seriously??

  • djp

    Yhis hotel has an extensive history of a bed bug problem.

    This is the logic of sseparating cases… you see the problem but if you claim each case is independent then you can argue each person brought their own bed bug.

  • einsteinson

    The ” divide and conquer ” strategy will only work for hotels if they can prove that they have been vigilant in treating known infestations. Obviously this hotel has had previous bed bug problems so their pest control records will be relevant in any legal action. If only one bug was found in an inspection by a licensed pest control company than it will be difficult to prove fault by the hotel regardless of how many other rooms were affected. Hotels only have to prove they try, not success. 

  • JJWeldon

    You can leave a hotel you know.  They don’t lock the doors from the outside.

  • Micah Liam

    I really hate bed bugs, they irritate me very much and they seem to be everywhere. Thanks for publishing this article because i needed it and i will also try your spray.bed bugs los angeles