WATCH: Why Do Airport Gates Have Carpeting?
A wall-to-wall wow.
These days, some airport terminals feel more like a sleek, iPad-filled co-working space than a gathering place for harried travelers before their flights. But even if you're not at a recently upgraded gate complete with floral installments or sitting in a swanky airport lounge, chances are you're surrounded by carpet. If you find yourself at Nashville's BNA, you'll find that the tapestry below your toes even has its own Instagram account, @BNACarpet.
But why do airports have carpets in the first place? It's all in an effort to make you feel calmer, which is good news for travelers and airport employees and businesses alike. "In many airports, the long walk from check-in to gate is paved in linoleum (or some other hard surface). But you’ll notice that the gate waiting area is carpeted. This is an attempt to make holding areas more relaxing by giving them a soft, cozy feeling, like you might find in your own living room," writes Jessica Hullinger in Mental Floss.
"Happy, relaxed travelers spend 7% more money on average on retail and 10% more on Duty Free items. And it doesn’t stop with a layer of carpeting," Hullinger continues, adding that the addition of designated yoga spaces, spas, and therapy animals are rising in popularity at airports, too.
Of course, carpets alone won't allay the stress of travel, but if their subtle softness boosts our mood before a flight out of ATL or IAH, we'll take all the rug zen we can get.