Flying with germs: 3 things you never want to touch at airports, on planes


We know that airplanes can be a breeding ground for germs and other nasty things that could get you sick, but did you ever think about what you’re exposing yourself to before you even get to the jetway?

A study that was recently released found that the airport itself is a haven for germs and bacteria and it is enough to make those who aren’t germaphobic squirm and grab the hand sanitizer.

>> Read more trending news 

Insurancequotes.com tested six surfaces at three different U.S. airports, including Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport in Atlanta, over the past holiday season.

The worst the scientists found were the self check-in kiosk where they found 253,857 CFUs (colony-forming units) per square inch. One screen had more than a million.

The second worst, the armrests on the benches at the gate, which had 21,630 CFUs.

Coming in third, the water fountain button which had 19,181 CFUs.

As for the planes, you’ll want to try to not visit the lavatory if possible. The flush button had 95,145 CFUs. The seat back tray where we use our laptops, iPads and eat our snacks had 11,595 CFUs. Finally, the seat belt buckle had 1,116 CFUs.

The Federal Aviation Administration, FAA, doesn’t regulate how and when airlines clean planes, according to TravelPulse. And when there is time to clean, strong disinfectants are not used, only general cleaners, TravelPulse reported.

So what can be done to clean the areas flyers encounter, other than strong cleaners? Dubai International Airports have started using facial recognition for flight check-in where people won’t have to touch kiosks, AARP reported.

Related video:


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Nation & World

Schumer calls for removal of North Korean leader’s face from commemorative coin
Schumer calls for removal of North Korean leader’s face from commemorative coin

Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., called on the White House on Tuesday to remove an image of Kim Jong Un from a coin meant to commemorate the planned summit next month between the North Korean dictator and President Donald Trump.  Schumer's call, made via Twitter, came a day after media reports surfaced about the design of the "...
Stacey Abrams wins Georgia Democratic primary, seeks to become nation's 1st black female governor
Stacey Abrams wins Georgia Democratic primary, seeks to become nation's 1st black female governor

Former Georgia House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams won the Democratic nomination for the state's top office on Tuesday, defeating ex-state Rep. Stacey Evans and advancing her quest to become the nation’s first black female elected governor.  She will face one of two Republicans in November in the race to succeed Gov. Nathan Deal...
Cohen’s partner in businesses pleads guilty in deal, and will aid inquiry
Cohen’s partner in businesses pleads guilty in deal, and will aid inquiry

A significant business partner of Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, has agreed to cooperate with the government as a potential witness, a development that could be used as leverage to pressure Cohen to work with the special counsel examining Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.  Under the deal reached...
Can parents be charged for failing to keep their guns locked up?
Can parents be charged for failing to keep their guns locked up?

Authorities in Texas were quick to identify the owner of the pistol and shotgun used to kill 10 people at Santa Fe High School on Friday — they had been bought legally by the suspect’s father, the police said.  Less clear was how the suspected gunman, Dimitrios Pagourtzis, came to possess the weapons, raising questions about whether...
Bannon condemns Mnuchin’s trade truce as China giveaway
Bannon condemns Mnuchin’s trade truce as China giveaway

Former Trump political strategist Steve Bannon condemned a weekend truce in the U.S. trade dispute with China as a capitulation, signaling dissatisfaction among the president's allies.  Bannon targeted Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, a former Goldman Sachs banker, for his role in the trade talks. President Donald Trump "changed the dynamic...
More Stories