Don't let the bedbugs bite

Trip Start Feb 21, 2012
Trip End Sep 20, 2012

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Flag of Malaysia  , Sabah,
Tuesday, July 3, 2012

My worst nightmare has come true - bedbucks! I had been scared off having them in the bed since I learned about them and then yesterday morning Jack woke up with a long line of bites on his arm. He just mumbled his typical "it's nothin just a rash", so I didn't think more off it. Later on in the afternoon I discovered all the black blotches on the sheets and it started to dawn on me what was really going on. We told the hostel's employees straight away who didn't seem very surprised and gave us another room, one with a bunk bed.
I should have been alarmed when I had seen all the old matrasses on the roof top but now it was too late. We had already slept in the infested room for two nights. How far had the bugs spread? Were they in our luggage already?

This question was answers when I opened my rucksack in our new room and one of the bugs stared right at me. Jack killed it. It was the first time I had actually seen one. We could only hope for the best that it was the only one we had taken across. Maybe it was but even that made no difference because our new bed was a paradise for the parasite. Lying down late in the evening I spotted the first one on the wall, then it was just a matter of time until we saw more of them crawling onto the sheets with the speed of ants.

The rest off the night I spent boiling hot water in a kettle and pouring it over all our clothes. Jack hung them up outside. What to do with the huge backpack and other things that couldn't be washed? Even on the internet no one seemed to have a proper answer. We ended up vacuuming them out in the morning, spending the rest of the night awake in the common room.

At about 7.30 we started our search for a new hostel to find out that Kota Kinabalu only offers a bunch of sh***holes. One dirtier than the other but all similarly high in price. Exhausted and disappointed we chose the cleanest double room, we finally had to get some sleep. And here we are now, unaware if we managed to get rid off the bugs or if the whole nightmare starts all over again.

Even without the whole bedbugs experience I disliked Kota Kinabalu, the bugs just make it the worst place traveling for me. It is a shame because we were so excited that we managed to book to climb Mount Kinabalu for two days. Especially after the Lonely Planet had advised to book it six months in advance.

Outside the city there are some beautiful islands which actually reminded me of the Gilis. We spent a great day there sunbathing and snorkling, where we didn't really get very far because territorial trigger fish kept on attacking us. That was the same day as the bugs were attacking us.

Just one more night until we climb the mountain. And then still some more nights until we can get out of here. I can't wait to leave KK, I just hope so much that we leave without any parasites on board.


Addition 60 min later:
We have discovered more bedbugs on our bags, they must be hiding in the cracks. We were really frustrated. There was only one option left - chemical warfare. We bought cockroach killer, emptied our rucksacks, sprayed them and hung them up outside. Double checked all our clothes and put them in plastic bags. Now there is nothing left to do but hope again.
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Isa on

Oh je, ihr armen! Bei unserer Reise wurden Bedbucks mit kochendem Wasser bekämpft, also wenn es ging auf 100 Grad waschen (vllt reichen auch schon 60). Alles andere in Plastiktüten, am besten dunkle, dann luftdicht verschließen und lange in die Sonne legen. Das sollen die wohl nicht überleben können. Viel Erfolg bei dem Kampf!

t&d on

awww, what a shame to have bedbug issues at your last stop in asia! :( good luck getting to south america! the weather should be more moderate there. safe travels!

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