Jun 9th, 2006, 12:44 PM
Original Poster
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We are flying on USAIRWAYS from Philly to Venice in October. I cannot get a consistent answer from the airlines as to whether they supply SEALED IN A BAG CLEAN BLANKETS AND PILLOWS. Has anyone had experience with USAIRWAYS on this subject?
NJA270 is offline  
Jun 9th, 2006, 12:50 PM
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No...but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night and have no idea whether their pillows and blankets were clean.

JAGIRL is offline  
Jun 9th, 2006, 12:55 PM
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On international flights, I find that they try to have most of the pillows and blankets in sealed bags. However, there is no guarantee so I wouldn't count on it.

If you're sensitive, I'd bring your own (I use my coat). I actually started avoiding the blankets since the Wall St. Journal investigated and found that blankets were laundered on average every 17 days ( I can't imagine how many flights they were reused on). The good news was that you weren't very likely to get a cold/flu from a 17 day old blanket. Viruses can't live very long on fabric.

Their advice was to forget about the blankets, but if someone sitting within 4 seats of you had a bad cold/cough that you should beg the flight attendant to move you. The way the plane ventilation works you would be breathing their germs in the entire flight - increasing your odds to over 50% of contracting their cold.
ParisEscapes is offline  
Jun 9th, 2006, 12:58 PM
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I flew Envoy Class out of PHL in April to Gatwick and the blankets came in plastic bags; the pillows, as I recall, did not.

I can understand what I personally feel are your mis-directed concerns and cannot imagine what you do when you sit on that upholstery.

Your own intact skin will protect you.
Intrepid1 is offline  
Jun 9th, 2006, 12:59 PM
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Unless your own mucous membranes come in direct contact with the secretions from that person four seats away with the flu there is little chance of you getting it.
Intrepid1 is offline  
Jun 9th, 2006, 01:16 PM
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Paris Escapes,
Are the sealed in a bag blankets actually clean though? How exactly do they launder them? Does anybody know?

This reminds me of that hotel sheets and the shopping cart handles news items.
How paranoid will we get when someone actually tests the air we're breathing and discover that it's horrendously packed with OTHER people's germs! Ewwww!!!!
JAGIRL is offline  
Jun 9th, 2006, 01:31 PM
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I've flown a lotta years & used many blankets & pillows on the airlines & haven't caught the creeping crud yet.
Carrybean is offline  
Jun 9th, 2006, 01:48 PM
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OK - help me here. What difference would a plastic bag make??? They are stilll re-cycled/cleaned blankets/pillows. A bag doesn't make them cleaner.

There is a LOT more to worry about than the blanket on your USAirways flight.

What are you going to do in your European hotel - the sheets don't come in plastic bags. And what about a duvet/cover w/o any blankets at all?????

Just relax and enjoy your trip . . . . .
janisj is online now  
Jun 9th, 2006, 01:55 PM
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Jaggirl: I think that the sealed bags are clean blankets.

I actually pulled the article, "Bugs on Board" - Wall St. Journal (1/13/2006) when I read your comments. It's pretty interesting - they tested a bunch of products and reviewed medical research on getting sick after a flight.

Here are some quotes:

BLANKETS: Amy Nichols, director for infection control at University of California at San Francisco Medical Center, says fabric hasn't generally been shown to be a disease transmitter (except in the case of smallpox, she notes). It's especially not a worry if the blanket remains away from your face, where germs get into the body. BOTTOM LINE: Keep the blanket out of your mouth.

AIR QUALITY: According to Boeing, air tends to flow side-to-side in pockets that are no more than a few rows wide. That means passengers generally share air only with those seated nearby. In an epidemiological study published in 2004 in the journal Risk Analysis, researchers found that the chance of catching tuberculosis on a 1000 n airplane was greatest for passengers seated within two rows of each other. Simply put, if someone next to you is coughing, move.

They also noted that you can pay for cleaner air - sit in First Class where there are less people.

If anyone is interested in seeing the article (it is WSJ subscription only), I'll send it to you. Email me at info at parisescapes dot com.
ParisEscapes is offline  
Jun 9th, 2006, 01:59 PM
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What? I can't suck on the blanket now?
Carrybean is offline  
Jun 9th, 2006, 02:04 PM
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I buy a travel pillow at Walmart and take that. Also bought a jazzy pink cover for it, and sewed a velcro 'strap' onto it so I can attach it to my bag when traversing the airport. I use the blanket if necessary or just put on a jacket or sweater.
Travelnut is offline  
Jun 9th, 2006, 02:05 PM
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I snorted out my Diet Coke when I read you're reply...Thanks for the laugh.
ParisEscapes is offline  
Jun 9th, 2006, 02:33 PM
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oooo thanks for bringing up the diet coke - now that we have just about exhasted this blanket thing, we can debate the horrors of diet soda

J_Correa is offline  
Jun 9th, 2006, 02:45 PM
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Carrybean, you still can, but only after it's been dipped into diet coke.
FainaAgain is offline  
Jun 9th, 2006, 02:55 PM
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NJA270: I don't like using the blankets and pillows on an airplane. I don't really find that the pillow adds that much comfort and I am rarely cold on an overseas flight. I take a pashmina in my carry-on bag and in the event I get chilly I use it. Actually I find the onboard blankets and pillows just get in the way and take up room I could use for other things. I sometimes slip my shoes off and use the blanket to put my feet on. My feet are clean, but that gives you some idea why I don't like to use them otherwise (wondering what others do with themLOL).
Giovanna is offline  
Jun 9th, 2006, 03:12 PM
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Bring your own--you can by airlane-type blankets and pillows at places like
Underhill is offline  
Jun 9th, 2006, 03:17 PM
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I feel that there is no guarantee that the blankets are clean although they are enclosed in plastic bags and no airline I have flown with have had pillows in plastic bags. For sure the pillows aren't clean. They are reused and inflight I notice that many end up on the floor.

francophile03 is offline  
Jun 9th, 2006, 03:27 PM
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We flew to Italy in May 06 - AA all the way. We had pillows that were sealed in plastic and also blankets that were sealed in plastic. Inside were the little dinky ear plugs, but everything was all sealed. I had taken my pillow (can't leave home without it!) but had no need of it.

I don't know about any other airline, but I'd think they would all do the same.

Good luck,

Brahmama is offline  
Jun 9th, 2006, 03:39 PM
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What makes you think that pillows and blankets sealed in plastic bags have actually been cleaned?
Betsy is online now  
Jun 9th, 2006, 03:51 PM
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Brahmama - I am so glad to hear of someone else who travels with a pillow. Everybody in my family does that and my husband thinks we are weird.
J_Correa is offline  

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