Aircraft Bathroom Manufacturers Promise: We Won’t Make Them Any Smaller

Apr 3, 2019

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If you are troubled by the recent trend towards making aircraft bathrooms smaller, as seen on the Boeing 737 MAX introduced by American and United, rejoice: It will not get any worse.

Leading aircraft bathroom manufacturers Collins Aerospace and Diehl Aviation have both told TPG that the absolute minimum size of their aircraft bathrooms has already been reached, and they will not get any smaller. At this week’s Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg, the two manufacturers showed their latest products, which use space more effectively to maximize room for passengers as well as the airline’s seating density.

Diehl’s smallest model is a fairly generous 31″ width. The company said the smallest acceptable size to maintain comfort and usability is the Airbus Space Saving bathroom, as found on the American Airlines A321neo, which is a slightly smaller 28 – 29 inches. Diehl says it won’t make anything smaller than 31″.

Collins Aerospace on the other hand is the manufacturer of the infamously tiny 24″ bathroom that both American and United have installed on their Boeing 737 MAX aircraft. We have reviewed this product on both carriers and noted the bathroom was an uncomfortably small size, with an almost unusable sink.

TPG editor at large Zach Honig in a United 737 MAX bathroom. (Photo by Zach Honig / The Points Guy)

Collins defended the 24” bathrooms, saying that the airlines’ decision to maximize seating is a direct response to passenger demands to have lower fares and a more diversified product with more choice,

American Airlines 737 MAX bathroom
American Airlines 737 MAX bathroom (Photo by JT Genter/The Points Guy)

However the company also said that it won’t go any smaller than that, even if requested by specific airlines or Boeing.

This is because even medium-sized passengers would be physically unable to use them if they were any smaller, something Collins found out after testing with passengers of all sizes for the current model.

Collins Aerospace 29" bathroom (Photo by Ben Smithson / The Points Guy)
Aerospace 24″ space saving bathroom exhibited at AIX Hamburg. (Photo by Ben Smithson / The Points Guy)

This news will come as a relief to passengers, especially those who may already struggle to use even the 29″ width bathrooms on the American A321neo, especially if they are doing things like changing diapers, or their own clothes.

Featured image by the author

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