Overcoming the Fear of Flying: A Guide to Help You 2023

By: Ehis Travels

Do you know that about 2%-5% of the world population need to overcome their fear of flying? Have you ever had a flight experience where some passengers started screaming as the plane took off? 

This happens more often than you might think. There are many people who find it difficult to entrust their lives to pilots. That’s exactly what you should do on a plane – entrust your life into the pilot’s hands and trust him to get you safely to your destination, terrible, right?

But it doesn’t have to be. Looking at the statistics, the pilots are doing well. The Aviation Safety Network (ASN) recorded a total of 15 fatal aircraft accidents in 2018, resulting in a total of 556 deaths. These numbers may seem high until you realize that they represent the frequency of one fatal accident per year. This is a very low figure compared to the more than 1 million road deaths each year. This means that you are safer in a plane than in a car, so your fear of flying may be unfounded.

We are here to suggest some ways to help you get rid of your fear of flying also known as Aviophobia


Know what to expect.

Overcoming the Fear of Flying: A Step-by-Step Guide

British Airways plane taking off. Source: Pexels

Takeoff, turbulence and landing. These are the three most important parts of flight. There are also three aspects of flying that scare passengers the most.

Passengers with the fear of flying need to know what to expect during takeoff, if they are to remain calm during the process. First, the pilot increases the power of the aircraft’s engine to ensure that all the aircraft’s engines are producing the same amount of power.

Then followed a full-scale takeoff, accompanied by rapid acceleration and increased engine noise. It is normal to hear noises and feel turbulence as the plane approaches the runway for takeoff. When the plane finally takes off, you also get bumps. This is all normal, don’t panic.

In the turbulence, you can feel the unexpected movement of the plane. Sometimes it feels like the wind is blowing the plane around. The pilot’s assurance that “it’s just turbulence” will do little to nothing to calm the nerves of hundreds on board, as drinks spill and fists become clenched. 

The pilot was right, though, turbulence is just a drawback. The aircraft is designed to withstand more pressure than turbulence can cause.

Landing is the final part of the flight process. You will feel the plane slowly descend until it finally touches the runway. When the plane hits the runway, it’s normal to feel bumps, and you should stay in place until the pilot closes the seat belt sign. 


See a therapist

Overcoming the Fear of Flying: A Step-by-Step Guide

Source: Pexels

The fear of flying is known as Aviophobia. If you have this condition, your hands will become clammy when you’re on a moving plane, your heart rate will increase, and you’ll start shaking, become short of breath and might start choking. 

If you have this condition, you can see a therapist for help and treatment. In addition to treating your condition, therapists may also prescribe antianxiety medication to help calm nerves during the flight. 


Get the most comfortable seat (aisle, middle or window)

Overcoming the Fear of Flying: A Step-by-Step Guide

Aisle Seats. Source: Pexels

Which seat do you find most comfortable? Many people with the fear of flying usually avoid the window seat.

 Looking out the window in the air can sometimes cause vertigo. If you have a fear of flying, choose a seat in the middle row when booking your flight. If you’re in a window seat, ask other passengers if they want to switch seats with you. You’d be surprised how many people prefer a window seat. 

Relax and have a drink

Overcoming the Fear of Flying: A Step-by-Step Guide

Source: KLM Blog

When choosing to have a drink, be aware that too much alcohol can lead to unintended violence that could cause you to get arrested on the plane or on arrival. For this reason, it is recommended to drink only two to three glasses of wine before the flight. You can also ask the flight attendant to serve you more wine while you’re in the air. The key is to drink enough to calm your nerves, but not so much that you get drunk. 


Avoid the news

News reporters regularly publish updates on airplane accidents that have occurred since commercial aviation became a reality. The news can feel like an agent of doom at times, filling your mind with images of crashed planes, it will be hard to get rid of your fear of flying once you’re in the air.


Harness the power of positive thinking

On an airplane, always remember that there are only two possible outcomes. The chance of a plane crash is very low, and there’s a good chance you’ll get to your destination in one piece.

Instead of spending all your time panicking and imagining a plane crash, why not save yourself the worry and focus on the fact that you have an almost 100% chance of getting to your destination in one piece?


Read or watch something exciting

Buy a good book before your flight. Choose something charming enough to distract you from your fear of flying on a plane. If you don’t like reading, use the in-flight entertainment system. These systems are often full of movies, from thrillers to dramas and comedies.

You can also play some music on the plane’s entertainment system. If you’re flying on a plane that doesn’t have an entertainment system, you can watch these movies on your phone or computer by switching to airplane mode.

Only use the device when the pilot says you can, and turn it off when prompted.

SUGGESTED READ: Worst Things You Can Do on a Flight or at An Airport 2023


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