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Why Airports Have Carpet

Travel + Leisure logo Travel + Leisure 2017-11-15 Stacey Leasca

a group of people standing in a room © Getty Images If you spend enough time traveling, you may start to wonder about the many aspects of airports.

Take, for example, that most airports are carpeted. You would think that terminals should for the most part be designed with hard floors to keep travelers and their wheeled luggage moving quickly and to make it easier for airport staff to keep it clean. But as it turns out, carpeting is one of the many ways airport planners can affect your mood — and your behavior.

As MentalFloss explained, many airports have gate areas that are carpeted. This simple design element helps to keep travelers feeling more relaxed before takeoff, because carpets provide a “soft, cozy feeling, like you might find in your own living room.”

Carpeting — along with lower ceilings, more natural lighting, and comfy seating — encourages relaxation among travelers who are very likely to be stressed, according to as Fast Company.

Why? Because it turns out there's a benefit to relaxed passengers that airports are sure to appreciate: Travelers that are both happy and relaxed tend to spend about 7 percent more money on retail around the airport and 10 percent more on duty-free, according to airport market research company DKMA.

It even goes beyond interior design. As Mental Floss noted, many airports are also adopting more unorthodox methods of finding pre-flight serenity like adding spas, yoga rooms, and even therapy dogs to their terminals.

To keep you spending, airports also tend to keep around fewer kiosk employees, according to Skift. A survey by NCR found 40 percent of respondents would prefer to avoid human interaction when shopping, meaning you’re far more likely to see an unmanned kiosk than a store full of employees the next time you're at the airport.

WATCH: TSA agents regularly fail security tests (provided by Fox News)

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