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The 1 Thing Flight Attendants Wish Passengers Would Stop Doing On Planes

Use the restroom before boarding to help reduce the amount you need to use the in-flight lavatory.

Airplane safety is paramount to flight attendants. They inform passengers of emergency protocols and flight rules, ensure bags are properly tucked away so no one gets hurt, and help everyone be comfortable during their journey.

But while flight attendants work hard 30,000 feet in the air to keep people safe, many passengers do something detrimental to themselves and others: walking barefoot into the plane lavatory.

Recently, flight attendants on Reddit lamented about this unbelievably common habit. For your own well-being — and other passengers’ — flight attendants would like you to stop doing this, please.

“Passengers use the bathrooms all the time on the airplane with either bare feet or with only socks on,” Elizabeth Regan, a flight attendant at a commercial airline, told HuffPost.

This in-flight habit gives flight attendants “the ick” because of what could be on the restroom floor. Hilary Clark, inflight services director for California-based private jet company Planet 9 and former commercial flight attendant, told HuffPost that seeing people use the restroom barefoot is “quite concerning.” “During our training, we learned that the liquid on the lavatory floor is often more than just water,” she said.

Not to mention the fact that it’s just gross and inconsiderate to other passengers. Regan added, “It is completely unsanitary.”

In general, public restrooms can be hot spots for germs. A 2015 study from TravelMath found that the lavatory flush button on planes had 265 colony-forming units (CFU) per square inch, compared to 172 CFU on home toilet seats. While most of these germs aren’t a huge threat to a healthy adult, it’s better to reduce your risk of exposure.

“Airplane lavatories are used frequently by many passengers during flights, leading to high-touch surfaces such as door handles, flush buttons, sink faucets, and toilet seats becoming contaminated with various pathogens,” said Dr. Dahlia Philips, an infectious disease physician and medical director for MetroPlusHealth’s Partnership in Care Special Needs Plan. “Walking barefoot exposes your feet to bacteria, viruses and fungi that can enter through cuts or abrasions on your feet.”

goldhafen via Getty Images

Use the restroom before boarding to help reduce the amount you need to use the in-flight lavatory.

As a general rule, Clark said going barefoot into the lavatory is “unhygienic and should always be avoided.” She suggests people bring a pair of slippers…

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