AN expert has revealed the rather gross reason you should never put your suitcase near your hotel bed – and instead leave it in the bathroom.

Missy Henriksen, former vice president of public affairs for the National Pest Management Association warned you could end up going home with more than just a tan.

Bed bugs can be found in all kinds of hotels, from budget to five star ones – and the bathroom means you are less likely to take them home with you.

She told Health: "Bed bugs are least likely to be found in the bathroom.

"They don't like the tile floors, and there aren't as many hiding places.

"They like to be closer to where people may be sleeping."

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The microscopic insects get their name from their habit of feeding on humans in their sleep.

In order to do this, they will often live inside mattresses, but they can also happily make themselves at home among clothing too.

That means anyone who encounters bed bugs in their hotel room is at risk of taking them home in their suitcase.

Having an infestation of bed bugs is rarely down to poor hygiene, and is more commonly due to being carried on personal items – like suitcases, so storing your bag away from the bed is sensible.

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Earlier in the year, Vicki Sims, from Lady Bug Pest Control, shared some top tips with Mattress Next Day on preventing bed bugs coming back with you from holiday.

Keep clothes in the wardrobe

While this one might seem obvious, it's often the case that people get to the hotel after a long flight and dump clothes on their bed.

Immediately hanging items up in the wardrobe reduces the chance of contact with bed bugs as while the critters can crawl, they can't fly.

Keep worn clothes away from clean ones

Bed bugs are more attracted to dirty clothes than to clean clothes. So, when packing for a trip, make sure to take a spare plastic bag for your dirty clothing, and knot it each time you add to it.

Wash everything you packed when you get home

As soon as you get home from your holiday, unpack your bag in a location other than the bedroom. Ideally on a hard floor as you won’t be able to spot bed bugs in the carpet.

Next, inspect your suitcase closely and use a flashlight to revise the seams, folds, and pockets of your suitcase. You should then vacuum your suitcase before placing it back in storage.

It's important to then wash all your clothes, including those that you did not wear, and if the washing labels of your clothes permit it, wash them in hot water.

Keep your bedroom cool at night

According to the British Pest Control Association (BPCA), the ideal temperature for an adult bed bug to thrive is between 21C to 32C, so it’s best to keep your room cool at night-time.

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A flight attendant revealed an 80p item they use to keep the bed bugs out of their suitcase.

Some people suggest that hard-shell suitcases reduce the chance of bringing bed bugs back from trips away.

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