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Where is the healthiest seat on an aeroplane? Read this before you fly

Choose the window seat - and not for the view.
Choose the window seat - and not for the view.
Image: 123RF / Diego_cervo

Paranoid about coronavirus, but need to fly? Book a window seat — it’s the healthiest option, according to National Geographic.

And when you’re on the plane, get out your disinfectant wipes.

Given that the deadly virus has spread from its epicentre in China across the globe, thanks to international travellers, the publication has been focusing on how travellers should respond: where the quarantines are, what's cancelled and what to do if you've planned a trip to Asia.

Science editor Nsikan Akpan and writer Amy McKeever researched whether some seats on planes reduce one’s risk of coming into contact with contagious “bugs” better than others.

“It seems that while jetliners can act as germ vectors, seats with a view are safer,” they reported. “Finally, there’s a good reason to sit in a window seat.”

That’s because passengers in aisle seats have a greater likelihood of coming into contact with communicable viruses due to the proximity of other passengers.

“It is also possible that passengers in window seats are more likely to stay put for the duration of a flight.”

So what are the bacterial hot spots in all seats? Tray tables, air vents, seat-belt buckles, toilet cubicles and seat-back pockets. So it’s a really good idea to carry disinfectant wipes and hand sanitisers when you travel.

A YouTube video showing Naomi Campbell donning gloves before wiping her entire business class seat area — “everything I could touch” — with Dettol wipes was labelled “bizarre” by a UK tabloid when it went viral last August.

But the supermodel must be feeling vindicated now. “I don't care what people think of me,” Campbell says in the video. “It's my health, and it makes me feel better.”

GET IN TOUCH: You can contact Wendy Knowler for advice with your consumer issues via e-mail: consumer@knowler.co.za or on Twitter: @wendyknowler.

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