Imagine yourself meeting friends for lunch. You jump on the bus and there's a disgusting smell of a mixture of body odour, bad breath and cheap perfume. You try and find a spot near a window but they are all taken, so you sit through your whole trip feeling uncomfortable. Does it make you feel insecure and unsafe?
Is there a connection between smells and feeling comfortable and safe? The answer is… yes. Women feel safer in a shop, home or bus when scents are being diffused. Young men however appear to be less sensitive to the surrounding smells. These were the results recently found from a scent experiment amongst 500 passengers conducted by Connexxion, a public transportation company from of the Netherlands.
The study was conducted to find out whether the sense of safety and feeling comfort could be increased among passengers through scenting public transportation. Changes in attitudes amongst the bus drivers were not noticed, although the testing did conclude that women experienced a significantly higher sense of safety and comfort whilst taking public transport and the male passengers sensed a higher sense of comfort whilst travelling.