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How Often Do Pillows/blankets Get Washed?  
User currently offlineFalstaff From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 6104 posts, RR: 28
Posted (6 years 10 months 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 22123 times:
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The other day I was talking with my mom about what to get my dad for Christmas and she suggested a small pillow and blanket for when he travels. I said that dad has been using the airline's pillows and blankets since 1969 and they seem ok to him. Mom went on about how they don't get washed very often. That made me wonder do they ever get washed? If so how often?

I figured I better ask the experts at a.net.


My mug slaketh over on Falstaff N503
61 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineTravatl From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 2173 posts, RR: 7
Reply 1, posted (6 years 10 months 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 22116 times:

As someone whose worked in the airline industry since 1990, trust me, get your dad the travel blanket and pillow.

User currently offlineNWA757boy From United States of America, joined Aug 2005, 676 posts, RR: 4
Reply 2, posted (6 years 10 months 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 22111 times:

Blankets at NW are every 30 days.....Same with Continental, CO has tags on their blankets showing the date it was made or delivered I guess either way I would NEVER use an airline blanket they are a cess pool of diseases.

User currently offlineSafetyDemo From United States of America, joined exactly 7 years ago today! , 310 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (6 years 10 months 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 22106 times:



Quoting Travatl (Reply 1):
As someone whose worked in the airline industry since 1990, trust me, get your dad the travel blanket and pillow.

I second that opinion. When people ask me about blankets or pillows on my aircraft (which we don't have) I always tell them they are better off without one!

-safetyDemo



Please direct your attention to the flight attendants in the cabin...
User currently offlineCanadianNorth From Canada, joined Aug 2002, 3390 posts, RR: 9
Reply 4, posted (6 years 10 months 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 21992 times:

Well, I can't speak for all airlines. However, I work as a Cabin Service Agent, and part of my job is doing the pillows and blankets.

Pillows: Basically at the end of every flight when we get on the plane we collect all the pillows that were used, take off the old cover, put on a fresh one, and put it back in the overhead bin where it belongs. After a while some of them get a little worn out, and in that case we simply put the pillow in the garbage. Every now and then we bring new pillows on board and make the bin full again, to make up for ones that get lost/worn out/stolen/etc over time.

Blankets: At the end of every flight we restock the aircraft with clean ones, and take the used ones off with us. When we aren't on the planes part of our job also is to wash said blankets, and then when they are clean and dry we fold them, bag them, and put them in the clean bin ready to go back on a plane.

Seems to work quite well for us, but then again with only 6 airplanes, and some not used every day, and some flts being freighters, a busy day we might have to do 5-15 blankets and 20-30 pillows, but often it's less than that.


CanadianNorth



What could possibly go wrong?
User currently offlineCory6188 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 2686 posts, RR: 5
Reply 5, posted (6 years 10 months 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 21947 times:

I don't know what they do on other airlines, but anytime I fly CO and watch as the aircraft is serviced for a turn, I always see the cabin cleaners toting huge bags of fresh pillows and blankets as they walk up the jetway stairs into the cabin...in fact, just this morning on my EWR-BOS flight, I saw them go up with pillows and blankets neatly organized in big plastic bags....and then they came out about 15 minutes later with bags filled with a jumbled mess of pillows and blankets. My guess is that they take off all the old ones and bring new stuff aboard for each flight.

But as a side note, it definitely seemed a little ridiculous to have pillows and blankets on EWR-BOS. The flight was a whopping 38 minutes, and nobody took any out of the overhead bins -- that just seemed like a waste of money to me. I know that CO tries to provide full amenities, but there are some areas where you can make cuts and nobody will care.


User currently offlineCuriousFlyer From United States of America, joined Oct 2006, 694 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (6 years 10 months 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 21902 times:

Well if the pillows and blankets are not used on a 38mn flight, they might be used on the next flight, they are not that heavy, I really appreciate the fact that CO has them.

When I fly AF, they usually have clean blankets and pillows it seems. The blankets heavily smell of detergent, it is a bit tacky but comforting, better that than BO!


User currently offlineSeptember11 From United States of America, joined May 2004, 3623 posts, RR: 21
Reply 7, posted (6 years 10 months 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 21903 times:

I like it when airlines provide clean/new cabin pillows and blankets in sealed packages.


Airliners.net of the Future
User currently offlineTravatl From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 2173 posts, RR: 7
Reply 8, posted (6 years 10 months 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 21863 times:



Quoting September11 (Reply 7):
I like it when airlines provide clean/new cabin pillows and blankets in sealed packages

Honestly, so do we, and sometimes we do (but no ariline does it on every flight). In this age of consumer-price-driven travel, the passenger would be much better buying a $5 neck pillow, and dressing in layers, or bringing their favorite binkie aboard.


User currently offlineSuper80DFW From United States of America, joined Oct 2007, 1694 posts, RR: 11
Reply 9, posted (6 years 10 months 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 21679 times:

Whenever you wash them! (If they say Skybus on them)  Wink


"Things change, friends leave, life doesn't stop for anybody." -- EAT'EM UP EAT'EM UP KSU!!
User currently offlineJoeCanuck From Canada, joined Dec 2005, 5471 posts, RR: 30
Reply 10, posted (6 years 10 months 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 21656 times:



Quoting Travatl (Reply 8):
the passenger would be much better buying a $5 neck pillow

Best thing ever created for sleeping on a plane. Airline pillows are completely useless unless it's used to pad your head against the wall if you have a window seat. Even then, the inflatable neck pillow beats it hands down.



What the...?
User currently offlineD328 From United States of America, joined Jul 2007, 307 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (6 years 10 months 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 21483 times:



Quoting JoeCanuck (Reply 10):
Best thing ever created for sleeping on a plane. Airline pillows are completely useless unless it's used to pad your head against the wall if you have a window seat. Even then, the inflatable neck pillow beats it hands down.

 checkmark 


User currently offlinePhoenix9 From Canada, joined Aug 2007, 2546 posts, RR: 8
Reply 12, posted (6 years 10 months 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 21461 times:

Aren't there regulations about this? I have never gotten a dirty blanket or pillow but I can imagine that dirty blankets and pillows may just be teeming with bacteria and viruses: cold, flu and oh ya...who can forget SARS scare!! Does the airline really want to take a chance making so many PAX sick and then getting sued??


Life only makes sense when you look at it backwards.
User currently offlineYLWbased From Hong Kong, joined Jan 2006, 831 posts, RR: 4
Reply 13, posted (6 years 10 months 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 21373 times:

CX have their blanket in sealed plastic bags and place them on your seat on every single flight. And it smells new or freshly washed when i use them. Can anybody from CX confirm this?


Hong Kong is not China. Not better or worse, just different.
User currently offlineJoeCanuck From Canada, joined Dec 2005, 5471 posts, RR: 30
Reply 14, posted (6 years 10 months 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 21346 times:

On every flight I've taken in Asia, there has always been a sealed pillow/blanket combo on me seat. I don't know if they've been cleaned to specs but the blanket is always folded nicely and smells clean.


What the...?
User currently onlinePanHAM From Germany, joined May 2005, 9397 posts, RR: 29
Reply 15, posted (6 years 10 months 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 21311 times:

LH has every used blanked washed and packed into a clean plastic bag. They contract that out to a servicen provider.

General rule - if a blanket is not given to you in a clean and sealed plastic bag, don't use it.



E's passed on! That parrot is no more! He has ceased to be! E's expired and gone to meet 'is maker!
User currently offlineFURUREFA From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 802 posts, RR: 2
Reply 16, posted (6 years 10 months 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 21286 times:



Quoting PanHAM (Reply 15):
General rule - if a blanket is not given to you in a clean and sealed plastic bag, don't use it.

Same with American; if it ain't in a sealed pillow pack, it ain't clean.


Matt


User currently offlineNWAESC From United States of America, joined Aug 2007, 3389 posts, RR: 9
Reply 17, posted (6 years 10 months 3 days ago) and read 21175 times:



Quoting NWA757boy (Reply 2):
Blankets at NW are every 30 days.....Same with Continental, CO has tags on their blankets showing the date it was made or delivered I guess either way I would NEVER use an airline blanket they are a cess pool of diseases.

On the Int'l flights, the blankets are "new" (at least freshly laundered), and the pillows have new covers on them.

On domestic routes, there are no pillows, and the blankets shouldn't be used for anything besides a floor mat if the forward galley is wet.  Smile



"Nothing ever happens here, " I said. "I just wait."
User currently offlineGeorgiaAME From United States of America, joined Aug 2005, 980 posts, RR: 6
Reply 18, posted (6 years 10 months 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 20899 times:

To put it mildly, in my profession, I wash my hands alot. But really, people aren't dropping like flies from communicable diseases after flying on an aircraft. We had something like 2 million people passing through Hartsfield this weekend. If 2000 became sickened from using blankets/pillows, that would still be less than 0.1% getting ill, and 2000 sickened people x similar figures throughout the US this holiday weekend would displace even the nastiest political news of the day.

I agree, the idea is less than appetizing, in fact, it is really kind of gross. But it is hardly the amount of filth required to sicken people. If sitting next to Mr and Mrs Stinky, barefoot, sweaty armpitted, lardbottoms with the unwashed tank tops doesn't get you sick (I said sick, not nauseous), a dirty recycled "blanket" won't do it either. Unless the last passenger had smallpox, and even then, chances are good you won't get it.

Any chance than my entry can be the last on this really yucky thread?



"Trust, but verify!" An old Russian proverb, quoted often by a modern American hero
User currently offlineJoeCanuck From Canada, joined Dec 2005, 5471 posts, RR: 30
Reply 19, posted (6 years 10 months 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 20780 times:



Quoting GeorgiaAME (Reply 18):
Any chance than my entry can be the last on this really yucky thread?

No...no chance at all...



What the...?
User currently offlineIAirAllie From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 20, posted (6 years 10 months 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 20687 times:

Most carriers put fresh ones on after every long haul or everyother longhaul flight. For domestic flights who knows. Jet blue seems pretty good about replacing them frequently. I bring my own inflatable pillow and use my over coat or a pashmina as a blanket. I'll use the airplane ones if there are no obvious stains but only over my legs never near my face.

User currently offlineJoeCanuck From Canada, joined Dec 2005, 5471 posts, RR: 30
Reply 21, posted (6 years 10 months 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 20650 times:

On the other hand, how many take their own blankets to a hotel? Mmmmmm...another pleasant image.


What the...?
User currently offlineOrion737 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 22, posted (6 years 10 months 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 20613 times:

I have yet to get an airline blanket smelling of Comfort or for our US friends, Downy!

User currently offlineFalstaff From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 6104 posts, RR: 28
Reply 23, posted (6 years 10 months 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 20572 times:
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Quoting JoeCanuck (Reply 21):
On the other hand, how many take their own blankets to a hotel? Mmmmmm...another pleasant image.

I know hotels wash the sheets daily if a new guest is checking in that room, but I do not know about the blankets and bed spread.

Quoting GeorgiaAME (Reply 18):
lardbottoms with the unwashed tank tops

I'm glad I don't fly that airline.

The only time I ever sat next to a person with a tank top was in 1999 and it was in F. They were thin and clean.



My mug slaketh over on Falstaff N503
User currently offlineTcfc424 From United States of America, joined Nov 2003, 517 posts, RR: 2
Reply 24, posted (6 years 10 months 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 20322 times:

Working at a line station, pillows and blankets are replaced after/before each flight. Are they clean? I don't know but they are folded all nice and neat...better than our cleaners could do. I don't know how/when they get washed, but we seem to have a pretty large stock of both available.

25 Post contains images SBBRTech : oh no, if my wife reads this i will get 10 yrs worth of "i told you so" thrown on me at once...
26 Orion737 : Sniff for Downy or Lenor first.
27 Post contains links Greenair727 : Just read a post on airlinecity where the author said he was a on flight when the cleaning crew came on for a JRO-DAR-AMS flight and he said "pillow c
28 LH526 : Well, we have talked pillows and blankets ... nobody mentioned the seat fabric and cushion, who are made of similar fabric ....
29 VonRichtofen : This is true for AC long haul flights as well. They are washed after every flight. Kris
30 JoeCanuck : At least the seat fabric isn't in your face...unless...well, let's not go there...
31 JFK69 : I have a question for you all. I am flying air pacific in Jan fron LAX - NAN. I am figuring, small airline, few routes, they probably give clean blank
32 JoeCanuck : Spend the 5 bucks and get an inflatable neck pillow. Trust me on this. It's the number one bit of kit to consider when flying over a couple of hours.
33 Uaord2000 : At UA, clean pillows and blankets are provisioned on EVERY flight over 4.5 hours (transcon) and EVERY international segment. On the small percentage o
34 LH526 : Just turn your head sideways while sleeping ... there you go. Touch the seat cushion once while reaching for your pockets or the seat belt, and your
35 Nwa744tpa : In 20 years , it has been my experience that if the blanket is not sealed (clean), then the only place for it to go is behind your back for support. F
36 JoeCanuck : Sweet Buddha...it's possible to get a lot of icky stuff on a blanky in a week..."We wish you a fluey xmas...".
37 LXA340 : True usually with all premium airlines when you request a blanket or it is already on your seat it is always fresh and inside a plastic bag. However I
38 FI642 : In my station every time a bird comes through all the blankets are removed to be laundered, and fresh ones in plastic bags are put on. Pillow cases ar
39 Bartonsayswhat : when QX is groomed at my station, procedure is just to pick em up off of what ever they're on, fold em and toss em in the overhead. what ever happens
40 MEA-707 : I flew them this month and it is a good small airline, they should be clean or at least above industry average.
41 Post contains images SNAFlyboy : Good point...if those seats aren't going to get you sick, the blankets probably won't either... All of the flights I've serviced were domestic, so I
42 Mcamargo : I don't know about you, but every time I fly CO mainline in the US, I always see blankets and pillows, and in about half the cases the blankets are s
43 TheCol : All the airlines I have worked with either re-use their blankets or throw them away. The pillows are re-used, but the pillow cases are thrown out and
44 Yankees : When I fly AA business class on either the 767 or the 777 they have fresh duvets in plastic covers.
45 BR715-A1-30 : I third that motion... When I worked in MKE, I would have people ask ME when I was in the jetway when the blankets get washed. It was then I told the
46 Evan767 : That's why I prefer leather seat covers. Much easier to clean/disinfect and it is likely to happen more often than cloth seats.
47 BR715-A1-30 : While that may be true, Leather is also more expensive to maintain. Airlines like to keep their planes looking at least somewhat presentable, so, whe
48 Goomba : On Delta for a 5 hour ATL to SFO flight, I can't even buy food on board...all I get for a 5 hour flight is a small blue cardboard box with raisins and
49 Evan767 : Was that really necessary or were you just trying to fit in an attempt to bash Delta on all counts?
50 Goomba : Well - this is a forum, and I have a voice. To answer your question...yes I jabbed at Delta a bit, but deservedly so. I'm tired of lackluster service
51 Goomba : BTW...I have also flown CO from IAH to SFO this year as well. Clean planes, great service, nice airline. I take back the SkyTeam comment from before.
52 Evan767 : Wow... I'm not even going to argue with you. Maybe someone will. You are completely off.
53 Goomba : Well Evan767 we do share a common passion for Radiohead. That's a good thing. Considering you are in high school and I am a very tenured business trav
54 Evan767 : Sorry, I have to argue with you here. Check out flyertalk, the medallions love Delta flight attendants. They often say they are the best in the indus
55 BrianDromey : Nope, little to no chance of that Im afraid. Bacteria and Viruses can not live very long without a host. Were talking minutes to hours, and I suspect
56 ImperialEagle : Agreed! Too bad the bedspreads/comforters in hotel rooms aren't laundered and sealed-up the same way! The first thing I do when entering a hotel room
57 JoeCanuck : Which is totally true for a hard surface which readily dries out but not necessarily for an absorbent piece of cloth, especially if it's folded when
58 Post contains images Goomba : EVAN767 I agree the new album is great. I paid $10 for it too, unlike many others that took it for free. I fly UA as a SFO resident now vs. when I liv
59 Type-Rated : About a year ago one of our local television news stations stopped at a few of the "better" hotels in the Houston area and checked the room for bacte
60 Post contains links Type-Rated : Whoops, forgot the link to the story..... http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/Health/story?id=1507794
61 Davescj : Every COEX flight I've been on had both pillow and blankets. I've flown them out of CLE, EWK and IAH. Not always fresh for certain, but always there
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