An Airbus source told U.K. newspaper The Telegraph that men’s stand-up facilities would be a better use of space and reduce lineups overall. But the prospect was met with concern by the British Toilet Association, which says the idea doesn’t pass the smell test.
“One of the biggest problems with urinals is that they smell strongly,” said Raymond Martin, managing director at the association. “Unlike toilets, which have a rest bend covered in water to block the smell, the pipes are fully exposed in urinals. For that reason they are not something I would want to use on a plane.”
Airbus is suffering lavatory issues as it works to complete its much-anticipated A350.
Airbus’s lavatories are built in factories and then slotted into the aircraft. The compartments do not always fit together perfectly, sometimes creating a problem with pax closing the toilet door – and forcing them to hold the door closed with their foot while attending to the business at hand.
At a press conference at the Farnborough aircraft show on Tuesday, Airbus COO Tom Williams confirmed that simpler designs were being looked at, and that these concepts included options which included urinals for men.
However, he added: “It’s a bit sexist to have a men-only toilet, though.”
Telegraph readers disagree, with over 60% in an online poll saying they don’t find the idea sexist.
The flying urinal idea isn’t completely new. FR boss Michael O’Leary suggested it years ago. He also suggested charging €1 per use.