In a survey two thirds also said that they feel the cleanliness of a bathroom reflects the quality of the food served and over a quarter admitted to checking the toilets before deciding where to drink or eat.

 

The survey of over 2,000 people was commissioned by the Formica Group, which asked people for their most common complaints about toilets.

The biggest issues identified were hygiene and bad smells, with poor maintenance being another major bugbear.

The most popular features in toilets were those improving hygiene – for example hand-free toilet flushes and soap dispensers, although excessive frills such as Japanese-style wash and dry technology were considered unnecessary.

Privacy was a priority for many with soundproofing considered to be 'somewhat important' by 42 per cent. Despite the rise in the number of unisex toilets, however, many respondents are yet to be won over.

A mere five per cent don't mind them but around half of respondents, both male and female, prefer gender-specific loos.

The survey also asked about design preferences in public loos and found that the colours people associate with clean, stylish bathrooms in hospitality venues are whites and creams (39 per cent).

For 14 per cent of respondents, lighter colours also impact visitor perception on how a bathroom smells and bright, spacious bathrooms with large mirrors and sinks were almost universally considered positive features.

Trains top the list of loos people are most reluctant to use, followed by those in nightclubs and motorway services.