Tag: Toilets

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Here's One Airplane Bathroom That's Impervious to Hijacking

February 17, 2014 at 3:25 PM | by | Comments (0)


Above: the cockpit lavatory of the Boeing 747-8i

There's a new jumbo jet plying the skies—the Boeing 747-8. Unfortunately it's not among Boeing's top sellers, and only one airline (Lufthansa) is currently flying it with passengers.

We mention it now because the 747-8 is the only Boeing commercial aircraft with a built-in feature which would've prevented a hijacking situation like what happened with Ethiopian flight 702 earlier today. That feature: a restroom and rest area just for the cockpit, located behind the armored flight deck door, which means both pilot and co-pilot never have to leave the secure area to use the restroom.

At the debut of the 747-8 Intercontinental in June 2012, Boeing chief pilot Mark Feuerstein noted the advantages of having this lavatory and crew rest quarters inside the cockpit, as it increases security and minimizes flight crew absence from the flight deck. [Update: The restroom within the flight deck is actually an option on all 747s, and some older 747-400s have it (such as in the case of Qantas' 744 fleet), but the 747-8i is the first aircraft where it's been the popular option].

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The Little Things: French Perfume on Singapore Airlines

Where: Singapore
January 14, 2014 at 3:06 PM | by | Comments (0)

In the midst of the bustle of travel, it's all too easy to overlook the details. We're talking about special touches others have stressed over just so you can enjoy a unique experience, whether you know it or not. Every so often we'll highlight The Little Things like this, so now you will know.

The Little Thing: L'Occitane en Provence extras in the Singapore Airlines Business Class lavatories.

An airplane toilet is decidedly not the place you’d most look forward to visiting, but there are some exceptions.

In this case, take the lavatories of Business Class onboard Singapore Airlines, which are stocked with more than the usual comb, toothbrush and razor amenities, but also with premium L’Occitane en Provence toiletries.

There, on a shelf near a fresh orchid, are three signature products from the French brand:

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Have You Pooped in One of the USA's Top Ten Public Toilets?

September 9, 2013 at 2:06 PM | by | Comments (0)

Public restrooms aren't the most thrilling topic, but we've all used them and considered them a godsend at some point. Well, the folks over at Cintas—you know, the people behind the management of many such bathrooms—have put together a list of the nation's best public commodes. It's actually more of a contest, and this round sees an airport facility in the running. No, it's not the infamous Larry Craig bathroom at MSP, but the regular stalls at Tampa International Airport.

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When in Southeast Asia, Keep Some Coins Handy for the Commode

May 24, 2013 at 3:52 PM | by | Comments (0)

A pocket-full of coins isn't something we would want to have when traveling the world, but it might just get you out of some awkward situations in Southeast Asia. On a recent trip through the region we noticed plenty of public restrooms in popular areas like open-air food markets, hawker centers and public parks. This is great for when 'nature calls' and you're nowhere near your hotel or a major mall. One caveat is that these 'public' facilities are pay-per-use, at a cost of a few small denomination coins.

Most of the time we noticed that the cost was on the honor-system and sometimes, even if there was an attendant, we weren't refused entry until we paid. Before you think it's outrageous to pay to pee, let us say that the facilities were clean and fully stocked so there were never moments of asking others to 'spare a square.'

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Can Airplane Bathrooms Get Any Smaller? Yes, Yes They Can.

April 1, 2013 at 10:22 AM | by | Comments (0)

It seems that we’re at a unique place in the world of commercial aviation. Carriers are either reducing services and amenities as much as possible—like in the economy cabins—or they’re going all out in the business and first class cabins in hopes of securing some of those VIP travelers. Or both!

This time we’re looking at one of those cutbacks, as one airline is reducing the space available in the in-flight lavatory.

There’s a new bathroom design from the folks over at B/E Aerospace, and what it does is shave off a little bit of space from the lavatory in order to add a little space to the main cabin. Of course this does not mean more legroom for those in economy, as it’s all done to cram in yet one more row of seating. More seating means more dollars and, after all, the airlines are running a business.

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Even the Toilets of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner are Futuristic

January 4, 2013 at 12:29 PM | by | Comment (1)

This is the future.

There may be no personal jetpacks or hoverboards or even cheesecake in pill form, but at least we have advanced enough as a civilization to install self-closing toilet lids in airplane lavatories.

This miracle of modern engineering we only just discovered after @jonk tweeted us to ask if, after having seen auto-close lids on United's new Boeing 787 Dreamliner, LAN's new birds had them as well.

Onboard the inaugural flight of the LAN 787 from LAX non-stop to Santiago, Chile earlier this week, we had 10 hours to explore the 787 in-flight, in both Economy and Premium Business class, and made the question of the lavatory a priority. Check back Tuesday for our full review and photo galleries of the flight, but let's resolve this important issue right here and now.

The answer:

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When Airplane Toilets Malfunction

March 5, 2012 at 4:34 PM | by | Comments (0)

Hey, who wants to read an article with the phrases "blackish-green liquid" and "excrement had leaked out?" How about a version with "some black liquid, black oil came off on her face" and "there was quarter-sized, nickel-sized, dime-sized drops all over"? No one? Then allow us to summarize.

A Long Island couple was enjoying the unusually mild Northeastern winter we've been having by spending the evening on their deck. Their otherwise idyllic lounging was disrupted by black semi-liquid sludge that came falling from the sky on top of them, and which turned out to be incompletely frozen waste dropped by an overhead airplane.

According to the local CBS affiliate, they "want answers" as to why this happened to them (apparently they're not satisfied by the idea that the universe just wanted to make a cosmic punchline out of them that day). Money quote: "She says 'oh my God it’s raining' I said 'No it’s not'". Can you imagine?

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Ryanair Threatens to Remove Toilets from Flights. Yawn.

October 13, 2011 at 4:00 PM | by | Comments (0)

We have to imagine there's some kind of countdown timer in the offices of Irish LCC Ryanair. The clock ticks down second by second, and when the buzzer goes off it's time for the airline's customers-are-there-for-abusing CEO Michael O'Leary to say something outrageous about airline fees or peeing or airline fees for peeing. That way Ryanair can solidify its "no frills" branding, before turning around and—per a BBC expose—"duping customers with hidden fees." Marketing is magic.

Apparently the publicity timer recently hit zero, because O'Leary just gave this grating interview to The Independent. His new proposal is to remove two of the three toilets in every Ryanair Boeing 737-800, and to use the resulting space to install a total of six new seats.

That would allow the airline to stuff 195 passengers into every flight, instead of the 189 to which they're currently limited, and so they claim they're asking Boeing to sign off on the safety issues. Like so many other Ryanair brainstorms, we doubt this will go anywhere.

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Who Knew an Airport Bathroom Could Be So Nice?

September 16, 2011 at 2:52 PM | by | Comments (0)


[Note: we've only seen the ladies room]

The cleaning lady thought we were crazy taking pictures inside a restroom, but the public restrooms at Terminal 2 at San Francisco International Airport are actually something to write home about.

Flattering lighting, stools in the makeup room and—boy oh boy—Dyson Airblade hand dryers? Be still our frequent flying hearts!

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Weinergate of the Past: Where is the Senator Larry Craig Stall at Minneapolis Airport?

June 14, 2011 at 8:57 AM | by | Comments (0)

In the midst of all the Weinergate 2011 talk, it's important to step back and realize that America has a fine history of sexual political intrigue, and that sometimes we come closer to the history of it than we expect. Take, for example, the infamous Senator Larry Craig bathroom at Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport.

It's been almost four years to the date (June 11, 2007) when Idaho Senator Craig was arrested for "lewd behavior" after making the foot-tapping signals to initiate a gay sex encounter in one of the numerous men's restrooms at the airport. As the story goes, the man he was signalling to was actually an undercover cop, and Larry was cuffed and booked.

The bathroom still exists just as it was, and just this morning was watched as travelers unwittingly passed by or through it. If you'd not like to miss out on the chance to note this odd little landmark in American Political History, we'll help you find it:

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Peeing in Switzerland: Yep, Even This Will Cost Ya

April 13, 2011 at 2:16 PM | by | Comments (0)

Ryanair isn't the only one in love with the idea of pee fees; European train stations have elevated it from just an idea to a practice, installing many automatic pay bathrooms to serve the tens of thousands of travelers who pass through every day. One such station is the Zürich Hauptbahnhof in Switzerland, known as a hustley-bustley nexus for trains around the continent.

The pee fee area is hilariously named "McClean," though not associated with the Golden Arches in any way. It's a fancy pee station; there's also the option of taking a shower or just using a vanity to freshen up, although you have to pay extra, of course.

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What's the Deal with Airport Bathroom Attendants?

Where: Charlotte-Douglas International Airport [map], Charlotte, NC, United States
April 11, 2011 at 4:44 PM | by | Comments (2)

Airport washroom attendants. Yes, they do exist. Don't be frightened when you enter the bathroom at Charlotte-Douglas International Airport, because there will be an airport employee there to greet you, guide you to an available stall, and even pump the hand towel machine for you. It's weird and potentially off-putting and no other US airport seems to have this, so what's the deal with them?

The issue of the CLT bathroom attendants is pretty common; even skateboarder Tony Hawk has tweeted about them, and it wasn't until a friend ran into them during a US Airways layover this weekend that we realized how unsettling the unexpected interaction can be. Heck—the best restaurants and five-star hotels with happening lobby scenes don't even use attendants any more. So why this airport?

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