What Is Airplane Smell?Adam Clark Estes6/25/15 3:00pm14122EditPromoteDismissUndismissHideGo to permalinkYou know the smell. It’s hard to describe, but the second you step on an airplane, a flood of familiarity flies up your nostrils. Airplane smell is equal parts comforting and off-putting. And it’s actually a little bit dangerous. But what is it exactly?