It’s the most wonderful time of the year – and the most chaotic.
It may have seemed far away, but peak holiday travel has promptly descended on us. Industry group Airlines for America predicts a passenger count of 47.5 million over the 18-day holiday travel window (Dec.19 – Jan.5). This is a 3% increase from last year’s 41 mill, and with more travelers comes more exposure. We want you to be prepared to combat the various people and surfaces you’ll come in contact with, so there are no surprises.
Of course, getting your routine flu shots and taking the necessary vitamins/supplements beforehand is essential. In addition to that, we have ways to ensure a more sanitary experience because you can never be too safe. We’re going into this new decade safe and healthy, you might not avoid it all, but you should definitely try.
Filthiest Areas to Look Out For & How to Maintain Cleanliness:
Airplane Tray Tables
“A 2015 study by TravelMath that tested samples from hard surfaces in planes found that tray table surfaces had more than eight times the amount of bacteria per square inch than the lavatory flush buttons.” via Time.
Tip: Wet Wipes/Clorox Wipes.
Air Vents and Seatbelt Buckles
Two plane features with frequent usage (that may not receive a regular cleaning), but are unavoidable.
Tip: Wipe hands down with sanitizer after buckling or adjusting ventilation, disposable earloop masks.
Imagine the number of people that move through aisles and hold headrests for balance.
Tip: Wet Wipes/Clorox Wipes before resting your head, removable headrest covers.
Tip: Use a paper towel on the way out, and after washing your hands sanitize again.
The general rule is to only accept the blanket if provided to you in a plastic bag, otherwise, it’s probably been used.
Tip: Bring your own for added comfort and peace of mind.
Coffee, Tea and Tap Water
“It’s not just your co-passengers that bring germs onto the plane. The in-flight beverages can be unhealthy too. This is because flight attendants might use tap water to brew coffee and tea. Airplane tap water is sanitary enough for human consumption and you most likely won’t get a mysterious parasite, but you’ll probably get more bacteria and germs than you wish to ingest.” via Forbes
Tip: Self-discipline, getting your beverages before boarding.
If possible, consider booking the early morning flights. If a plane stays in the airport overnight it’s likely to get a more thorough cleaning and you’ll be the first to access it. The additional privacy and personal service you get from flying in first-class or business class can be helpful, but the advice still applies (ask Naomi Campbell). You should be treating an airplane like any public space, and practicing good hygiene habits will limit your exposure to germs.
If you’ll be traveling this holiday season let us know your plans in the comments!