Another reason to travel with an RV


By Chuck Woodbury
I just returned to Seattle from the big Hershey RV Show in Pennsylvania. This  year, I flew; I didn’t drive the motorhome. And, as happens to me about one out of every four flights, I developed a cold after I returned. I’m getting to the point where I do not want to get on another plane.

I hardly ever get a cold except when I fly. I got to thinking after this cold hit about the number of people who had sat in the same seat as me on the Boeing 737 the 24 hours before. It would just take one person sneezing their germs or spreading them on the arm rest for the viruses to lie in wait for me. On my particular flight, several people hacked away around me — oh, the lucky people who got those seats on the next flight.

Does this happen to you?


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To CJG. xxxxxxx The metal rod in your leg is most likely titanium which is nonferrous. My son has one like that. That means it won’t be picked up by a common metal detector because they detect only ferrous (iron bearing) metals and alloys. I used to work as a TSA screener and I quit because I had to deal with too many xxxxxxx like you.


It might not be just the plane trip but the combination of germy people at the RV Show (or people at the airports), the extra stress of getting to and from everything, plus the exhausting schedule I’m sure you kept, that created the perfect storm for lowering your immune system to let those nasty bugs overtake you. Sometimes we just don’t take enough time to take care of ourselves. I know I sometimes get so excited to do something that I push myself beyond exhaustion, and then my body says, “Oh, no, you didn’t,” and then I have to take some down time to recuperate.


Airplanes are a flying Petri dish. It`s warm and humid with a lot of new bacteria every flight. I have to be desperate to get on a plane. Plane manufacturers could improve the ventilation by treating the air with ultra-violet light inside the ducting. It wouldn`t be perfect but it would help in my opinion. TSA have threatened to arrest me several times after telling them their machine isn`t working properly. I have metal rods in both legs and the alarm didn`t sound so I just told them the machine needs fixing which means to them I`m telling them they are incompetent. If we are going to put up with the abuse by them I want them to at least do a good job.


Yes we hate flying. We are currently sitting in the airport in Juneau. Gorgeous weather but two flights out of here are majorly delayed. Nothing you can do about it so here is what we do to keep from getting sick. Before leaving for airport we put antibiotic ointment in our nose. I carry Clorox wipes and wipe down the waiting arm rests and our airline seats. The used wipes are always black. I hang Purell from my purse and use frequently. Purell is almost better than hand washing as it has a lingering effect. I avoid the plane bathroom if possible. Before unpacking I wipe down luggage. The thing to remember as airlines no longer let you reschedule your flight if you have a cold or flu. They care nothing for the health or comfort of their passangers

Tommy Molnar

The “Quartzsite Crud”? This is a new one for me. I guess we’ve somehow escaped that.

But, we don’t fly either. As someone else mentioned, since 9/11 I haven’t even gone near an AIRPORT. I can’t stand the hassle. The bogus TSA, the endless lines, ridiculous regulations (no fingernail clippers, 90-year-olds having to take their shoes off, etc). This is why we have our trailer. We walk in and out with no hassles . . .

Kelly R

Being in the plane has never bothered me. BUT,
I refuse to go thru the crap at the airport. I even hate the hassle of going to pick someone up. Heck, just going to a football game has more rules for the patrons than it has for the players on the field.

John Bloxham

Chuck, what makes you think the airlines care what happens to their passengers. All they want is your money. Soon they will make their passengers stand up and pack them tightly so they can get even more people on one plane. Big business in this country is pathetic. I do not want to fly any more either.

Cheryl E Lane

Well, as strange as it may seem to others, I very discreetly wipe down the armrests, tray table top and bottom and the pocket in front of me with disinfectant wipes. I also run the ceiling air “nozzle” above my head on high. I haven’t gotten sick from flying once since I started doing that. Works for me.

Garry Hammond

I often get colds after flights, and, after taking a poll of fellow travelers, MANY of them are seeing the same result! Some after almost every flight.

You think a quick disinfectant spray of the heavily upholstered seats would be a no-brainer.

Also there’s the closed ventilation system…
If someone in first class sneezes, the poor chap in the back probably gets sick too.

Keith Manne

I used to enjoy flying, but bad service, micro seats, being randomly selected 100% of the time for TSA fondling and microwaving, the constant illness you noted, unreliable flights, and obscene pricing have me now driving anywhere I POSSIBLY can.

Where is that? Within 700 miles per travel day available, anywhere I am not going alone, anywhere I might want to arrive without a concussion from jamming my 6’2″ frame into 5’10″x18″ seats, and anywhere I want to actually enjoy going to. So, unless ocean or opposite coast tomorrow, driving it is! I’ve mentioned my 5000-mile weeks before.

I know flying is supposed to be safer than driving, but then there’s the commercial flight I helped “deplane” after it lost its wheels… e-slides into foam wasnt as much fun as you’d think!


Doesn’t happen to my husband and me because we haven’t flown since 2001 – not because of fear, but all the hassles since 9-11. Every time we hear about another issue with flying, we joke it’s reason #867 why we’ll probably never fly again, at least on a commercial airline. So glad we have an RV for all of our traveling. Get well soon, Chuck.


No I have never gotten a cold from flying. Don’t know why. I try and fly as little as possible because it is such a dehumanizing experience. We take our RV as much as we can. Then we have our own bed (and know who has slept in it previously), have our own food, shower, towels, and can take the dog. Must admit though there are times when flying makes more sense. Sometimes the time to drive cross country both ways doesn’t warrant the time spent at the arrival point. Hope you get better soon.

Joanne Tiki

This isn’t just an airplane thing though, how many people got the ‘Quartzite crud’ over the winter in Arizona?