Hoteliers zealously seek to protect their reputations from negative social media reviews, adverse local news coverage and damning word of mouth. Bed bug infestations can be particularly damaging to a hotel’s reputation because both business and leisure travelers rely on online sources when booking trips. If a guest sues your property, your local news outlet will likely publish your hotel’s name and highlight the corresponding legal complaint as soon as possible. Unfortunately, whether right or wrong, your reputation will be impacted regardless of the outcome. A mere accusation can significantly tarnish your brand immediately.
In today’s lightning-fast information society, negative experiences can quickly go viral and result in a significant loss of business for the hotel. Content that mentions bed bug-related court battles and settlements get clicks, as scandalous-oriented sites like TMZ and its dozens of clones have learned. Your reputation is directly impacted by being associated with bed bugs. The societal stigma of bed bugs is so powerful that mere news of a lawsuit can lead to unfounded assumptions about a property’s housekeeping and sanitation practices. Although a bed bug infestation can happen in any environment, word of bed bug-related litigation will bring these events to the top of guests’ minds when they plan their itineraries. These unfortunate, unfounded and often premature conclusions damage your reputation and bottom line long after any trials take place or settlements are reached.
Hotels have plenty of reasons to dread bed bugs. These pests can easily be introduced quickly from room to room via luggage and other personal items, making it challenging to contain an infestation. Infestations are costly to treat, as hiring professional pest control services and the replacement of furniture and bedding can be prohibitive. In many cases, hotels may need to shut down multiple rooms for several days to address the problem, leading to lost hotel revenue and guest inconvenience. Bed bug infestations are, without exception, one of the most severe concerns of the hotel industry…especially for the ill-prepared.
Taking steps to prevent a bed bug encounter before they ruin a guest’s stay is essential for keeping a hotel out of court and maintaining its hard-earned reputation. The most effective tool for preventing infestations is an active mattress liner installed on a mattress or box spring. These tools, such as ActiveGuard®, work as the centerpiece of a preventive plan by stopping a few newly introduced bed bugs from developing into a full-blown infestation. These active liners work 24/7 to protect your guests discreetly for two years. Utilizing a prevention-based program that features ActiveGuard can reduce a hotel’s risk of lawsuits and protect its reputation and bottom line.
Click here to learn more about protecting your hotel’s brand reputation from bed bug lawsuits.