The 50 Worst Bed-Bug Cities in America, Plus How to Protect Yourself When You Travel

by Kirsten VanderJagt |

Brace yourself, bed-bug-phobes—national pest control company Orkin just released this year's list of 50 worst bed-bug cities in America. And it's not looking good for Chicago. The Windy City topped this year's rankings—for the third time. How did your city fare?


  1. Chicago
  1. Detroit
  1. Columbus, Ohio
  1. Los Angeles
  1. Cleveland-Akron-Canton, Ohio
  1. Dallas-Ft. Worth
  1. Cincinnati
  1. Denver
  1. Richmond-Petersburg, Va.
  1. Dayton, Ohio
  1. Indianapolis
  1. Houston
  1. Seattle-Tacoma
  1. Washington, District of Columbia-Hagerstown, Md.
  1. Milwaukee
  1. San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose
  1. Raleigh-Durham-Fayetteville, N.C.
  1. New York
  1. Charleston-Huntington, W.Va.
  1. Grand Rapids-Kalamazoo-Battle Creek, Mich.
  1. Omaha, Neb.
  1. Louisville, Ky.
  1. Nashville, Tenn.
  1. Lexington, Ky.
  1. Atlanta
  1. Buffalo, N.Y.
  1. Sacramento-Stockton-Modesto, Calif.
  1. Syracuse, N.Y.
  1. Boston-Manchester
  1. Charlotte, N.C.
  1. Baltimore
  1. Phoenix-Prescott
  1. Miami-Ft. Lauderdale
  1. Knoxville, Tenn.
  1. Cedar Rapids-Waterloo-Dubuque, Iowa
  1. Minneapolis-St. Paul
  1. Hartford-New Haven, Conn.
  1. Champaign-Springfield-Decatur, Ill.
  1. San Diego
  1. Lincoln-Hastings-Kearney, Neb.
  1. Kansas City, Mo.
  1. Honolulu
  1. Albany-Schenectady-Troy, N.Y.
  1. Colorado Springs-Pueblo, Colo.
  1. Myrtle Beach-Florence, S.C.
  1. St. Louis
  1. Greenville-Spartanburg, S.C.-Asheville, N.C.
  1. Bowling Green, Ky.
  1. Ft. Wayne, Ind.
  1. Toledo, Ohio

One of the most common ways people bring bed bugs into their homes is on clothes and in luggage after traveling. Here are three easy ways to avoid staying in a bed-bug-infested hotel room and subsequently winding up with unwanted house critters.

  1. Before you book your hotel or before you check in, search for the property on The Bed Bug Registry to find out if there have been many incidences of infestation. Alter your plans accordingly.
  1. Take the sheets off the bed—check under the mattress, in the mattress seams, on the mattress. You're looking for dead bugs, shells, spots of dried blood. Use the flashlight function on your phone and look behind the headboard.
  1. Don't put your luggage on the floor—it's easier for bugs to crawl in. Keep it on the luggage rack or, if you're unsure about the bug situation, leave it in the bathtub until you finish surveying the room.