Whatever You Do, Avoid Touching This During Your Next Flight

Plane wing holiday travel

We’re oddly fascinated by just how disgusting our gym equipment / bed / make-up brushes actually are compared with the inside of a toilet bowl and the outside of a dog’s chew toy.

What we weren’t expecting to read, however, is that the one thing we are guaranteed to put our hands all over during our next flight is not only the filthiest thing in the plane, but potentially in the whole airport, too.

According to a recent experiment conducted by TravelMath, the folding table on the back of the chair in front of you – yes, the one you eat your microwaved sludge off of – should never be approached without some form of anti-bacterial caution.

The editors there got a microbiologist in to collect 26 samples to test from four separate flights. The tray had 2,155 colony-forming bacteria, which was nearly double the next grossest thing (don’t be pressing those drinking fountain buttons without gloves, people).

Bathrooms, however, were where some of the cleaner surfaces were tested. It is thought this may be due to more regular flight cleaning schedules and sanitisation. Also, as airline staff are under an increasing amount of pressure to deboard and reboard planes as carriers battle to maximise profit, not enough care is taken over cleaning up between.

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Our advice? Pack some disinfectant wipes in your cabin bag and a strong stomach.