Germs on a Plane

I recently read a fascinating & insightful article, Just Plane Nasty: 5 Places Where Germs Thrive on a Commercial Flight by Microbiologist and Director of Global Service Care at Reckitt Benckiser Inc., Joe Rubino.  In this article, he discusses the top 5 dirtiest places on a plane.  And for those of us that travel, it is eye-opening.  I will never board another plane without sanitizer!  Here’s a quick recap:

  1. Bathrooms:  I’m sure everybody knows this.  I never touch anything in a public restroom without paper towels and always use Purell after I leave.  I’m amazed at how many folks wash their hands then touch the door handle.  Too many people have subjective definitions of cleanliness for me to touch bare surfaces.
  2. Touch Screens:  Imagine how many fingers have touched that screen before you decided you wanted to play trivia on your flight to El Paso?
  3. Tray Tables:  All I had to read was the example of folks using it as an impromptu changing table.  Ewwww!
  4. Blankets/Pillows:  Blankets and pillows are reused multiple times before they are sent off to be washed.  This quote from Rubino says it all, “A saliva-filled pillow can perhaps cause the spread of a cold or flu, especially if there is more than saliva on it, such as respiratory secretions and mucus.”
  5. Seat Pockets:  How many times have you used the seat pocket to hold trash?  It’s easy to do.  What I found most interesting was the article speaking to the fact that some people lick their fingers when turning pages of the magazines provided.  Uh uh.  No.  My mind cannot deal with that.  Right now, I’m ordering a vat of disinfectant to soak my fingers.  I’m done with Sky Mall!

What does the article recommend?  Traveling with lots of Lysol® Disinfectant Wipes (or their travel-sized spray).  I highly recommend you read the article in its entirety.  It’s very informative in explaining where germs live & how you can decrease your chances of catching a cold or the flu while travelling.  Lots of things to be mindful of.  Also, please check out the other articles on the Priority One Jet’s blog.  Very interesting reads!

3 thoughts on “Germs on a Plane

  1. Frank says:

    Nice post Nikki! But I wish I hadn’t read it, because you’ve confirmed what I always knew plus more. Sometimes I wonder if it’s just better not knowing. I can think of all the things I did as a kid that were disgusting hygienically – but I never got sick from them or developed weird allergies.
    Ugg, now I’m thinking of plane bathrooms and all the people lining up to use them and the stuff splashing the walls and suspended in the air….
    Thanks…:(
    Frank (bbqboy)

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