A new study looked at germs on different forms of payment mechanisms and how they compare to some of the more disgusting things we can think of. And while little compared to a door handle of a McDonald’s in New York, or to a city parking meter, the credit cards, bills, and coins we use may be more germ-laden even than the bathrooms at New York Penn Station or a New York subway pole.
Testing “40 debit and credit cards, 27 different bill denominations, and 10 coins for germs” each surface “was swabbed with a handheld germ testing device and assigned a ‘germ score’ to rank the item on the disgusting scale.”
|Risk Item||Germ Score|
|McDonald’s Door Handle||664|
|NYC Parking Meter||473|
|NY Penn Station Bathroom||163|
|NYC Subway Pole||68|
Why did this finding make me think of Weird Al’s “One More Minute” off the 1985 Dare to Be Stupid album?
We touch these things all day long, and most of us are fine especially if we wash our hands regularly. Still, I don’t love coming into more contact with germs than I have to, and in this case I don’t have to.
I first saw the product on Shark Tank and knew that I needed one. I’m something of a germaphobe, and my phone has been everywhere with me. It’s been dropped on aircraft floors, in airport restrooms, and I’ve even taken it to Philadelphia. It needs to be cleaned. But that’s not all.
- Once you have it you want to sanitize everything that fits. I throw my credit cards in there. Those are handled by store clerks and sit on restaurant trays that other customers have used.
- I throw my wallet in once it’s emptied, too. If you don’t have a sanitizer for your tooth brush you can run it through the dishwasher — or stick it in Phone Soap.