Seasoned jet-setters have probably spent a fair amount of time in airports. Whether they’re making the most of an airport layover or weathering an insane flight delay, it’s safe to say that the stress and anxiety can take its toll on anyone—and cause them to take their surroundings for granted. So the next time you step foot in your local terminal, take a moment to appreciate the carpeting. Trust us, it was placed there for a reason. And don’t miss the reasons behind these weird airplane safety rules.
While common sense might call for terminals to be designed with tile floors—both for the benefit of passengers wheeling luggage and to make it easier for the staff to clean—most airports are carpeted, instead. Why? Turns out, those carpets have been strategically chosen to influence your mood and behavior. Learn even more airport tips before your next flight.
Carpets provide a “soft, cozy feeling, like you might find in your own living room,” MentalFloss reports. That’s especially true when they are paired with low ceilings, natural lighting, and comfy lounges. The result: A simple design scheme that can help stressed travelers feel a bit more relaxed as they wait at their gate.
What’s in it for the airports, though? Employees and airline staff are less likely to deal with irritated fliers, for one. But there’s another (surprising!) perk to carpeting that airports certainly appreciate. Happy and relaxed travelers tend to spend about 7 percent more money on retail around the airport and 10 percent more on duty-free, according to airport market research company DKMA. That’s not the only sneaky way airports trick you into spending more money, either.
Bet your TSA agent won’t mention that! Check out the secrets your TSA agent isn’t telling you.