ANA to fit its jets with women-only lavatories

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TOKYO — Japan’s All Nippon Airways, which has asked passengers to visit the toilet before boarding to help the environment, said Tuesday it will fit its jets with a women-only lavatory.

ANA will introduce one female-only toilet per aircraft on international flights next month after a survey of women fliers identified it as the second most attractive service they wished for after being offered desserts.

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The rest of the toilets onboard will be for men and women as usual.

“We received many comments that having a women-only lavatory would be a factor in differentiating our airline from others,” said an ANA spokesman.

“Many women said that they feel uncomfortable taking their time in the lavatory knowing that a male is waiting just behind them in line,” he said.

The spokesman denied that the new service was introduced following complaints about men soiling the bathrooms, telling AFP: “Those opinions may exist, but we do not have that data on hand.”

Since 2006 ANA has pursued a one-month awareness campaign each year in which it asks domestic fliers to visit the bathroom before boarding to reduce their body weight and therefore cut the plane’s carbon-dioxide emissions.

The airline is also planning to install “washlets” in its aircraft — electric toilet seats with water sprays for washing — a common sight in Japan and generally a source of amusement for first-time visitors and users.

The “washlets” will be installed in the Boeing 777-300ER, due to begin operating in April, and the Boeing 787 fleet set to start flying this year.