If you’re a frequent traveller, you’ve probably pretty much gathered that planes aren’t the cleanest places to be but we brave it anyway to get to our destinations. But when thinking about travelling in the time of coronavirus, that’s a rather scary thought! But, don’t fret, there are some steps you can take to make your flight a lot less germy. So here are 8 steps to help you disinfect your airplane seat for the next time that you brave a flight and increase you chances of an infection free holiday! If you missed my last post on Tips For Your First Solo Trip, Check it out!
By now, we’ve all seen the video of Naomi Campbell’s flight routine and that’s actually what inspired this post. I remember when it first came out, everyone was thinking that she was doing a little bit too much. But in the current Covid climate, her routine now looks like the bare minimum right?! So lt’s get into your own future airplane seat disinfecting routine so you can stay ready like Naomi!
1. Don’t Forget to Pack your Wipes
The first step on how to disinfect your airplane seat is to have the disinfecting wipes in the first place! You have to pack them to use them! You can try to get smaller packs so they’re not too bulky to carry but honestly, nothing wrong with the normal sized packs. You’ll probably be using them again when you get to your hotel/Airbnb anyway. Try to get one that has a nice smell, you don’t want to stink up the plane with weirdly scented wipes.
When buying wipes, make sure you get wipes that are Defra approved (UK) EPA registered (USA) disinfecting wipes that say they kill Noro virus, etc. For antibacterial gel, look for gels with minimum 70% alcohol on the ingredients list.
2. Have your wipes at the Ready
Now you’ve got your wipes it’s time to use them! Once you’ve boarded, you’ll need to take your time as you put your hand luggage in the overhead bins (if you have any). You need to get your wipes out and start disinfecting the overhead store handles.
To avoid queues behind you, it might be easier to just out on gloves as you board and take them off after you’re done stowing.
3. Use Your Wipes Correctly
There’s a right way to use disinfecting wipes, and many wrong ways. To correctly wipe, you need to wipe down all hard surfaces. If your wipes have directions, read them and see how long the surface needs to stay wet. If it doesn’t say, leave it on for as long as you can, minimum of 30 seconds.
The places your hands are most likely to touch are the most important when you’re disinfecting. Once you’re seated, wipe your tray first properly before moving onto other surfaces. Then wipe down the arm rest, seat belt, the top of the seat back pockets, the tray table latch, the touch screen if you have one, remote/volume controls and the window shade, if it’s a window seat. Don’t bother wiping your seat but we’ll get to that next.
4. Don’t Bother Wiping Your Actual Seat
When thinking of how to disinfect your airplane seat, you might think to wipe your seat BUT it’s actually not a good idea to wipe surfaces like your plane seat, even if its leather. Most airlines advise not wiping leather seats as it causes the material to break down easier. Disinfectant wipes also don’t work on cloth seats and all you”ll do is make your seat wet, making your entire journey less comfortable.
To limit your exposure from seats, you can do like Naomi Campbell does and take a reusable and washable seat cover or better yet, you can just use a throw from home specifically for that!
5. Avoid Seat Back Pockets
Seat back pockets are one of the most germ infested areas on a plane. Now, I was as surprised as you to read this because I ALWAYS reach for the in flights magazines and stash my snacks and water in there! So, do like me and DON’T store things in the back pocket going forward!
It’s best to keep your snack in your bag/purse or you can actually get something like this Flight 001 Seat Pak or something similar to help you organise yourself and hang off the seat in front of you. All so you completely avoid the seat back pocket. To be honest, I’m really going to miss those in-flight magazines (cue violins).
6. Aim for the Window
There are other savvy ways to keep you healthy on your flight and seating in a window seat is one. Research has shown that you have an 80% chance of getting infected if one of 11 people nearest to you is sick. 80%!! So the best thing to do is to get a window seat! The chance of you picking up an infection reduces, while the aisle seat is more prone because of all the people walking in the aisles.
7. Wipe the Bathroom Latch
Although this isn’t part of how you disinfect your airplane seat, if you use the toilet a lot during flights, wiping the bathroom latch before using it is great practice. As you can imagine, it’s an area of high touch, you’re more likely to pick germs here.
It’s a good idea to take your wipes and antibacterial gel with you if/when you go to the bathroom for the tap and flusher. You could also try to use your knuckles and wrists to do that too.
When you use the airplane bathroom, wash your hands thoroughly and use a paper towel to open the door.
8. Don’t Forget your Hands
I know you’ve been super focused on cleaning all possible the surfaces, it’s super important to remember to sanitise your hands. Beyond surface transfer we need to be mindful of hand to face/mouth/nose transfer. Touching a surface and then touching your face will increase your chances of getting ill.
After you’re done wiping all the hard surfaces, sanitise your hands to give you another protective layer. Then sit back, try to relax and enjoy your flight!
Open your overhead air vent, the cabin filters clean the air as it comes through so at least you get some clean air blowing over you. And drink lots and lots of water, stay hydrated and you’ll feel better all round!
We’ve come to the end now! when next you travel, try to implement these steps to properly disinfect your airplane seat and you’ll be a few steps closer to a virus free holiday! If you have any more tips that I may have missed out, please share in the comments!
If you’ve found this post helpful, don’t forget to share because sharing is caring!
Until Next time biscuits,
Stay Safe as you see the world!