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Who mostly uses hand sanitiser while onboard???

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On Voyager of the Seas in November we got to meet Mr WashyWashy! A crew member with a ridiculous hat singing the washyWashy song as you came in to the buffet, strongly encouraging hand washing at the array of sinks. I also get a squirt of sanitiser!

 

 

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Very thorough hand washer here, hand sanitizer is only a back up. Proper hand washing is a good 20 seconds with hot water and soap (or the “Happy Birthday” song). I’m a slight germaphobe as it is, I’ll press elevator buttons with my knuckle, I won’t touch the rails when I go down the stairs.

 

I usually get ready for dinner in my room right before, so if you see me walk straight past the hand sanitizer it’s because I have just thoroughly washed my hands and didn’t touch a thing on my way. 

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When on Holland America - Noordam in June, Sydney to Hawaii,  many of the hand sanitisers were out of solution or whatever you call it, including MDR and Buffet and no staff on hand to enforce it anyway.   Most of our cruising has been on Princess and they do have staff at the sanitising point but not wanting confrontation if a pax walked past the dispenser, rarely were they pulled up. Not good enough all round.😮

 

As for the couple of hand basins situated at the buffet entrance on the new Princess ships, many pax do not use them, too much in a hurry to fill their gut.🍮

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On 12/19/2019 at 9:12 AM, MicCanberra said:

Some cruise lines (P&O) have servers in the buffet all the time, their incidence of Noro is negligible compared to others like Princess.

 

It would make sense that Princess would know this fact and act accordingly to correct the problem.
 

 In the meantime, they need to actually enforce the use of the hand sanitiser and not just ignore the passengers that walk past and risk infecting others. I know that hand sanitiser if not foolproof, and soap and water is probably better, but if it is policy, then it should be enforced.   (rant over... 😉)

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I only use hand sanitiser if I have no access to soap and water so I would be one of those people who walks past the sanitiser pumps. Multiple experiments have been done that all come to the same conclusion that hand sanitiser is better than nothing but if you have options it really doesn't add much. One experiment even found that washing without soap was just as effective as hand sanitiser in terms of bacteria but since the act of washing also removes dirt and other biological agents like mould it ends up being superior to sanitiser. 

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On 12/20/2019 at 1:06 PM, NSWP said:

When on Holland America - Noordam in June, Sydney to Hawaii,  many of the hand sanitisers were out of solution or whatever you call it, including MDR and Buffet and no staff on hand to enforce it anyway.   Most of our cruising has been on Princess and they do have staff at the sanitising point but not wanting confrontation if a pax walked past the dispenser, rarely were they pulled up. Not good enough all round.😮

 

As for the couple of hand basins situated at the buffet entrance on the new Princess ships, many pax do not use them, too much in a hurry to fill their gut.🍮

The Princess ships I have been on have all had sets of three hand basins with hot water and soap. There has always been a crew member who politely directs passengers to the hand basins if it appears they are going to by-pass them. Maybe new passengers don't realise the basins have been installed so every passenger will wash their hands.

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I usually don't use it at the entrances to MDR & Buffet. The Hand Sanitisers..

Wake-up in the morning, first thing have a shower, then go get some food.

With dinner at any type of Restraunt. (On Land or at sea) I have a shower, groom myself & try and look Dapper. Then go off to eat.. I'm not one that has per dinner drinks.. 

I will wash my hands, after toilet stops. If I get lunch, I will wash them in The cabin...

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The science fair product is a bit flawed.   Bread mold is a fungus is not the same as bacteria or virus.    You aren't likely going to get sick on a cruise ship from mold, but norovirus is going to lay you out.     As others have pointed out, hand sanitizer is an adjuct not a replacement for washing with soap and water.    Hopefully it covers your casual contact with door handles and the like.

One amusing paradox not mentioned here is the ubiquitous buffet tongs.    If you reach in and pick up a roll from the table with hour hand, perhaps one or two people touch an adjacent roll to the one that they selected.   But every single person who comes along touches that same tong handle.   Your risks are bigger with the tongs.

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I do a similar experiment with my students at school but we are looking for both bacteria and fungi on hands and later around the school.
As far as hands go we have the agar plate divided in 4 and in one quadrant is a dirty finger, then one washed in normal soap, one in what they class as antibacterial handwash and then in what they actually use at the hospitals and probably the ships - chlorhex.  The chlorhex always works best.

Around the school bubbletaps have the most bacteria and while the students always think the toilets are going to, they often have the least ( and the kids wonder why I give them a cup and tell them to get water out of the science tap).  The glass doors to the classrooms have a lot as kids always put their faces and mouths on them while they are waiting for you to open the door (disgusting I know) and computer keyboards come in third.

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On 12/27/2019 at 6:33 AM, flyingron said:


One amusing paradox not mentioned here is the ubiquitous buffet tongs.    If you reach in and pick up a roll from the table with hour hand, perhaps one or two people touch an adjacent roll to the one that they selected.   But every single person who comes along touches that same tong handle.   Your risks are bigger with the tongs.

 

Yes, I have seen the food trays replenished or replaced but the old tongs have remained - ready for the next hundred passengers to touch! 😝   

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Just to add to the fun, there are some other things that are very nasty.

 

Touch screens and keyboards. So, think about who has used these before you and whether you trust their sanitary regime.

 

Some research was done in shops where they swabbed various surfaces. By far the worst were the demo smart phone and tablet screens. But anywhere that have communal touch screens are diabolical. 
 

Some interesting reading

https://wjla.com/news/health/germs-on-touch-screens-atms-airport-kiosks-others-put-to-the-test-72436

 

Similar research has been done with communal keyboards. Not good.

 

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Yet we handle all these things have not fallen down ill or dead. We survive. We need bacteria, we cannot survive without it so why do people insist on going about their day trying to kill it all - good or bad?

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I’m lucky I seem to have a robust immune system, in spite of being riddles with autoimmune diseases.

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On 12/27/2019 at 11:33 AM, flyingron said:

One amusing paradox not mentioned here is the ubiquitous buffet tongs.    If you reach in and pick up a roll from the table with hour hand, perhaps one or two people touch an adjacent roll to the one that they selected.   But every single person who comes along touches that same tong handle.   Your risks are bigger with the tongs.

 

I'm not very adept at using tongs either. I will always use a my hand to pick up something like a bread roll because I can do it without touching any other items. 

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10 hours ago, lyndarra said:

Yet we handle all these things have not fallen down ill or dead. We survive. We need bacteria, we cannot survive without it so why do people insist on going about their day trying to kill it all - good or bad?

I have to agree. I think the drive to completely sanitise everything is a bit misguided. 

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I have kidney failure, received a transplant oct 2017, I have done 3 cruises since (and 1 cruise with my first transplant in 2013 on the Carnival Imagination from Miami) so my immune system is pretty shot due to the nature of transplantation and the meds. 
 

I always wash my hands and use the sanitiser all over the ship especially when entering and exiting a eatery. In all of my cruises not once have I gotten sick, even on the last cruise where the cabins next door to us was quarantined for 3 days for “gastro like symptoms” I just made sure to wash and sanitise my hands every chance I got and not put my fingers in my mouth or near my eyes 🤷‍♀️

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