ATLANTA–A new study from pest control company Orkin finds that eight of 10 hotels have dealt with bed bugs in the past year, and 40 percent have treated for bed bugs in the past month. In addition to revealing the frequency of bed bug infestations, the study also revealed that hotels spend an average of $6,383 per bed bug incident.
Orkin partnered with The Bantam Group, a market research firm, to survey hoteliers nationwide on the impact of bed bugs on a hotel’s bottom line. The cost of bed bug incidents includes the replacement of soft-goods, treatment, and lost business. The report also shows that almost half of all hotels have been the subject of litigation because of bed bugs, which costs an average of $17,177 per incident. All in all, the total cost of a single bed bug incident could be as high as $23,560 for litigation and remediation costs. The study also found that respondents on average treated for bed bugs 7.1 times every five years, risking high costs for remediation and litigation.
“Bed bugs have long been a business concern for hotels, but this research helps hospitality professionals quantify the costs associated with bed bugs and benchmark what they’re spending on remediation versus their peers,” said Dr. Mark Beavers, Orkin entomologist and managing director of technical services. “It’s important for hoteliers to understand that bed bug introductions are not a rare occurrence nor are they caused by poor housekeeping or cleanliness practices. Unfortunately, the introduction of bed bugs is beyond a hotelier’s control because they often are brought in by hotel guests, no matter the hotel’s level of luxury. As we continue to find ways to combat bed bugs, hoteliers need to learn their risks, how to spot them and how to proactively fight against infestations.”
Hoteliers are aware of the risks associated with bed bugs, the research shows, with two-thirds worried as much or more worried than they were five years ago. Additionally, 82 percent of hotels agree that it is less expensive to prevent than to treat bed bug issues.