Hand sanitizers are no match for the creepy crawlies that have made headlines around the world this week: In New York, a bedbug infestation forced three subway cars out of service. In Paris, rats by the Louvre have tourists screaming. And in India, officials grounded a plane in New Delhi when scores of rats made an appearance.
The New York MTA took three N Train cars out of service for fumigation after discovering bedbugs in seat cushions used by train conductors and motormen. Later in the week crews found the parasites in two N Train employee lockers. The N train, which links Times Square with Herald and Union Squares, is a mainstay for tourists in New York City.
Across the Pond, visitors to the famed Louvre Museum in Paris are seeing more than just art. Rats have become a major nuisance in the museum’s gardens, with picnic-goers and museum visitors seeing the usually nocturnal rodents in broad daylight by the dozen.
And to top it off, August 6th saw the grounding of an Air India plane in New Delhi after passengers and crew observed the rodents as the aircraft was landing. Since rats pose more than just a hygiene threat to planes—they can cause ruin to electrical wires—Air India promptly took the aircraft out of commission and had it fumigated.
Just another week in the travel industry, with bedbugs and rodents disrupting vacations underground, in gardens, and up in the air.
Peter Schlesinger is a research assistant at Travel + Leisure and a member of the Trip Doctor news team. You can find him on Twitter at @pschles08.