That’s it ! you have all been waiting impatiently, the holidays have been booked, the suitcases are made and you are ready to get on the plane, the last step before your dream destination. But do you know that planes are not the most hygienic places that you might encounter. Here are some rules to apply to get out of the plane with your head up and a smile on your face.
There is no better way to test your body’s immune system than by flying. An airplane is a dirty place. With all these enclosed spaces, recycled air and nonstop flows of people, planes are the favorite places for bacterias. We carry microbes on the skin, clothing and inside our body. Some of these microbes are transmitted to other humans, and as we know, bacterias grow quickly in dirty areas. Bacterias that passengers carry involuntarily with them is a real problem for airlines. Some companies are careful to clean but some others not, and for reasons of profitability, the time needed to clean between flights decreases regularly. The mode of aircraft cleaning depends on the type of jet, the flight time, the time spent on the ground, etc. Of course, airlines must follow strict regulations regarding the quality of air and water in the cabin, but each airline has its own cleaning procedures. Some airlines daily clean each plane while in an airport, including the removal and replacement of all used blankets and pillows, and receive a deep clean every 30 days, while other companies clean their plane every 500 h of flights. Here too each airline has its own cleaning procedures. All companies focus on high-priority areas, which means First-class and Business-class cabins rather than Economy-classes that only benefit of the vacuuming floor, collecting waste and, more rarely, tables cleaned with a bacterial solution.
Germs can live long outside the body
Bacteria can survive for days on surfaces such as armrests, tray tables, blinds, back pockets and metal toilet handles.
Where do germs live in planes?
Tabletop – Air aerations – Flush buttons – Seatbelt buckles
Why are airborne diseases more easily transmitted in an airplane than in most other environments?
In an aircraft, about 50% of the cabin air is outside air and 50% is HEPA-filtered recirculation air. Airborne diseases are transmitted more easily in an airplane than in most other environments because:
The rate of ventilation in the plane is low
Many people are packed into a relatively small space
The exposure period is relatively long
Influenza viruses can be more powerful at low level of humidity, and the humidity of the plane’s cabin is much lower than in most other environments
Ironically, bans on smoking made cabin air worse because, when smoking was allowed, companies used twice as much outdoor air per passenger for the plane. Today, they do not do it anymore.
What can we do to minimize our chances of picking up an unpleasant bacteria during a flight?
Use an alcohol-based toilet paper to wipe the table tops Seat, seatbelt buckles, armrests, etc.
Wash your hands before leaving the toilet. The bathroom handles are a real favorite spot for microbes, which can be bad for passengers using the toilet just before a meal
Use a paper towel to open the toilet door
After walking down the aisle, use alcohol-based soap to clean your hands again.
Only drink bottle of water. The crew members will never drink hot water, coffee or tea on the plane, because they know that the plane’s pipes are practically never cleaned …