Beware of Bed Bugs on Planes

Beware of bed bugs on planesToday’s tip concerns bed bugs, believe it or not, on planes. Fear not: Bed bugs are not something that most flyers will ever have to deal with, but as established in a few recent incidents, they really can turn up in the sky. From Mental Floss:

“On July 17 and July 19, two separate Air India passengers tweeted about seeing—and being bitten by—bed bugs on flights from the New York City area to India. And it wasn’t in economy—one of the passengers said he paid $10,000 for business-class tickets for his wife and three children. After 17 hours in the air with bed bugs as seat mates, the passengers disembarked bloody and covered in bites. The Times of India reported that the airline had received reports of bed bugs on another flight on a different aircraft, but ‘appears to have ignored them.'”

As reported in the story, these aren’t the first such incidents, but there is only so much airlines can do to prevent bed bugs popping up in plane seats. If someone comes right to the plane from a plagued hotel room, for example, the bed bugs have already made it. So what can you do? Here’s how Mental Floss recommends you prepare:

“The best you can do is be vigilant, and if you do see bed bugs (first, make sure you know what one looks like) tell a crew member immediately. To minimize your own exposure, cover yourself up—bed bugs can’t bite through your clothes—and bring your own pillow and blanket. To really ensure you and your clothes stay bug-free, bring your own protective seat cover to put over your plane seat. You’ll look pretty wacky to your fellow passengers, but you’ll have an extra layer of protection.”

The story also notes that if you do see bed bugs in your plane seat, you should keep in mind that you may well have brought them with you. And you should always alert the airline immediately. For more, see the story.

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Johnny Jet
I used to be afraid to fly and at times even leave the house! I conquered my fear (long story) and now I travel to 20+ countries a year sharing my firsthand knowledge, tips and deals with friends, family and readers. Please sign up to our free newsletters and tell your friends!

2 Comments on "Beware of Bed Bugs on Planes"

  1. Barbara Duran | July 31, 2018 at 4:09 pm | Reply

    Bedbugs are very small and almost look like grains of pepper. I always put my luggage in the bathroom while I check for bedbugs by pulling up the sheets and mattress cover on all 4 corners concentrating on the seams as well. Check chairs made of cloth with seam. It is a pain but better than bites. They can be impossible to see on a luggage rack with cloth straps. I travel light so will use the vanity or desk for my luggage rack.

  2. Point is, don’t ever fly Air India. Once on them was enough for me at 0200 from Mumbai to Delhi. Worst experience ever…

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