Chicago Takes Another Top Spot for Pests, This Time Ranking #1 on Orkin’s Bed Bug Cities List

Over the past year, as travel resumed in the U.S., troubled Americans – and bed bugs – drove across the country for a getaway. When consumers plan to travel in 2022 with the evolving pandemic, it’s easy to forget that bed bugs are still a major threat. Given the hospitality staff shortage, there may be cases where bed bug introductions are not monitored as often as desired, so careful investigation is essential.

The list is based on treatment data from the major cities where Orkin has performed the most bed bug treatments 1st December 2020November 30, 2021. The ranking includes both private and commercial treatments.

  1. Chicago
  2. Philadelphia (+12)
  3. new York (+9)
  4. Detroit
  5. Baltimore (-3)
  6. Indianapolis (+1)
  7. Washington, DC (-4)
  8. Cleveland, Ohio (-2)
  9. Columbus, OH (-4)
  10. Cincinnati (-2)
  11. Grand Rapids, Michigan (-1)
  12. The angel (-3)
  13. Champagne, IL (+2)
  14. Atlanta (-1)
  15. Charlotte, NC (-4)
  16. Dallas-Ft. worth
  17. Denver (+3)
  18. St. Louis, MO (+7)
  19. San Francisco (+3)
  20. Pittsburg (-1)
  21. Greenville, SC (+2)
  22. Charleston, WV (-4)
  23. Flint, MI (-2)
  24. Raleigh, NC (-7)
  25. Norfolk, Virginia (-1)
  26. Richmond, Virginia
  27. Omaha (+3)
  28. Buffalo, NY (+1)
  29. Knoxville (+7)
  30. Cedar Rapids, IA (+5)
  31. Toledo, OH (-4)
  32. Dayton, Ohio (-4)
  33. South curve, IN (+8)
  34. Nashville (-3)
  35. Davenport, IA (+3)
  36. Ft. Wayne, IN (-3)
  37. Youngstown (+3)
  38. Milwaukee (-6)
  39. Miami (+8)
  40. Tampa (-1)
  41. Houston (-4)
  42. Harrisburg (new to the list)
  43. Greensboro, NC (-9)
  44. Seattle
  45. Peoria, IL (+4)
  46. Orlando (-1)
  47. Lexington, KY (-4)
  48. Lansing, MI
  49. Louisville, KY (-3)
  50. Lincoln, NE (new to the list)

Usually bed bugs are 3/16 of an inch long, red to dark brown, and are mostly nocturnal insects that come out of hiding to ingest blood meals from sleeping people. These pests are hematophagous, which means that blood is their only source of food. You can travel from place to place with ease, clinging to items like luggage, purses, and other personal effects.

“Bed bugs are a problem for everyone because they are master hitchhikers and travel home with people when they are unlikely to realize it,” said Ben Hottel, an orkin entomologist. “The way they hide in hard-to-find cracks and crevices can make them difficult to control, so it is recommended that you consult a trained professional when viewing an introduction.”

Bed bugs are known for their rapid population growth. Females can lay one to five eggs a day and lay 200 to 500 eggs over the course of their lifetime. They can survive for several months while waiting for their next blood meal, so they are likely to show up when a food source, such as humans, becomes available.

“Unfortunately, many hospitality companies are faced with staffing shortages and while the industry remains committed to cleanliness, now more than ever, travelers should watch out for bed bug sightings and be proactive with inspection efforts.” said Hottel.

Here are proactive tips Orkin recommends to homeowners and travelers to help prevent bed bugs:

At home:

  • Check your home regularly for signs of bed bugs. Check the spots where bed bugs hide during the day, including mattress labels and seams, and behind baseboards, headboards, electrical outlets, and picture frames. Check when you move in, after a trip, when visiting a service employee or after guests have stayed overnight.
  • Reduce the clutter in your home so that it is easier for you to spot bed bugs yourself or during professional inspections.
  • Examine all used furniture before bringing it into your home.

Keep the acronym SLEEP to in mind as you travel check for bed bugs:

  • S.Search the hotel room for signs of an infestation. Look for tiny, ink-colored stains on mattress seams, in upholstered furniture, and behind headboards.
  • L.ift and look into bed bugs hiding: mattresses, box springs and other furniture, but also behind skirting boards, pictures and even torn wallpaper.
  • E.Lift the luggage off the bed and wall. The safest places are in the bathroom or on shelves.
  • E.Check your luggage carefully when repacking and after returning from a trip. Always keep luggage away from the bed.
  • P.Lace up all dryer-suitable items of clothing from your luggage for at least 15 minutes on the highest setting after you return to the dryer.

With well over a century of knowledge and experience with bed bugs and state-of-the-art tools and products, Orkin is well equipped to assess your bed bug problem, provide training for small-staffed hospitality teams, and provide a strategic response to pest free your home and provide you maximum protection.

For more information on bed bug prevention and control, visit Also see Orkin’s video “How to Check for Bed Bugs in Hotel Rooms” for more tips on detection.

About Orkin, LLC
Founded in 1901, Atlanta-based Orkin is an industry leader in critical pest control services and protection against termite damage, rodents and insects. The company is committed to excellent service and operates more than 400 locations with more than 8,000 employees. Through Orkin’s point of service process – investigate, protect, reinforce, observe, report and follow up – Orkin provides tailored services to approximately 1.7 million homeowners and businesses in the The United States and has almost 100 international locations in more than 65 countries. Orkin is dedicated to studying pest biology and applying scientifically proven methods. The company works with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and eight major universities to conduct research and educate consumers and businesses about pest-related health threats. Learn more about Orkin at Orkin is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Rollins Inc. (NYSE: ROL). Follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube and Instagram.



Leave a Comment