Each Friday—even this Friday amid the cascade of COVID-19 stories—we feature a reader-inspired tip as our Travel Tip of the Day. This week’s tip was prompted by reader John W., who asked the following question on yesterday’s post sorting through the new coronavirus travel ban:
“Johnny – I’m wondering about your ‘take’ on, NOT the frequent handwashing, which is of course great advice, but my bet is that many travelers do NOT sanitize their cell/smartphones, and it would then seem that once one brings it up to one’s face, any virus or other contamination present on the phone would, of course, be communicable to the user.
“Your advice? I mention this only because, as you do, I read a lot about sensible precautions for travelers, but I don’t recall reading much, if at all, about using one’s (dirty?) cell phone…”
As I wrote to John under the post, that’s a great tip. I disinfect my phone every day. In fact, just this week, Apple came out and said that it’s okay to use disinfectant on Apple products (including iPhones). On its support page, Apple writes: “Using a 70 percent isopropyl alcohol wipe or Clorox Disinfecting Wipes, you may gently wipe the hard, nonporous surfaces of your Apple product, such as the display, keyboard, or other exterior surfaces. Don’t use bleach. Avoid getting moisture in any opening, and don’t submerge your Apple product in any cleaning agents. Don’t use on fabric or leather surfaces.”
As Quartz writes in a story about the news, “this is good news considering that the new coronavirus, which causes Covid-19, is thought to live on surfaces like glass for up to four days. Phone screens are pretty gross at the best of times, but especially during a major epidemic.” Don’t forget to disinfect your phone! Thanks, John W.!
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