Germs On Planes: How To Minimize Exposure
Recent news stories about outbreaks of flu-like symptoms — or a passenger with the measles — on planes may make trade show season and conferences seem more like a sequel to the “Snakes On A Plane” movie for travelers.
A list in a USA Today article (plus a video from NBC) offers some tips for keeping healthy during this busy trade show travel season:
• Carry alcohol-based (at least 60 percent) hand sanitizer or wipes to clean hands when water isn’t handy. When water is available, wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap.
• Wipe down the arm rests and tray table with the wipes and bring tissues to open the bathroom door.
• Pick a window seat and stay there to minimize contact with potentially ill passengers.
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
• Keep the air vents above your seat open to improve ventilation. Point the open vent away from you.
• Bring a face mask in case you're seated next to someone coughing or sneezing.
• If there’s room on the plane, ask a flight attendant if it's possible to switch seats to move away from a sick passenger. A March study found that passengers within two seats or a row of a passenger with a respiratory illness have an 80 percent or greater possibility of catching the bug.
• Do some research. The Travelers' Health section of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website offers travel advisories that can be filtered by destination and the type of traveler you are.
Don’t be the problem - don't fly when you're really sick.
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