While mattress encasements have become well known for their protection against bed bugs—and who wouldn’t be attracted by that fact alone—they are designed for more than keeping those pesky little critters at bay. The fact is that while they do a wonderful job of protecting mattresses from being ruined by bed bugs, they also protect expensive mattresses from people and allergens.
I recently spoke with James Bell, CEO of Protect-a-Bed, about this fact. Bell will be speaking at The Bed Bug & Pest Control conference presented by Lodging April 22-24 in Chicago. As he told me, encasements weren’t created solely for bed bug protection, but also general hygiene protection.
“Our products are called AllerZip because they zip up your allergies. They are what allergists recommend. If you encase your mattress it will separate you from any allergens in your mattress and give you a healthy sleeping environment,” he said. “At the same time, it also prolongs the life of a mattress. It prevents it from being soiled from dust and human excretion.”
So the same technology that protects a mattress from bed bugs, also protects a mattress from the dreaded “events” that hoteliers so often fear. So while entomologists recommend encasements for bug protections, allergists and I’m sure more than a few housekeepers would recommend them for hygiene protection. In fact, that’s what they were originally created to protect against.
That means there is a value proposition beyond guarding against the cost of replacing mattresses due to bed bug infestations. “There’s far more to it,” Bell said. “And, it shows that a hotel is interested in the protection of the guest in general. It’s far more than bed bugs, it’s also hygiene.”
While hoteliers may hesitate placing encasements on their beds for fear of giving guests the impression of a bed bug problem, the truth is that encasements can serve as a selling tool to hotels. Perhaps with a little education, hotels can inform guests that the encasements are there to protect against allergens and other contaminants. Because most people don’t encase their beds at home, you could conceivably offer a healthier sleep setting. And, isn’t that what a hotel is all about—offering a better environment for guests than they are used to at home?
I realize spreading that message is easier said than done, considering the negative media coverage given to bed bugs these days. Of course, guests’ minds will first wonder toward the pests, but it doesn’t have to be that way.
Bell, and several other experts, will be on hand in Chicago to help hoteliers discover ways to not only deal with bed bugs and other pests, but also how to ease the minds of their guests. Encasements are just one way.
You can register for The Bed Bug & Pest Control Conference presented by Lodging by clicking HERE.