Tips for Nervous Flyers from a Nervous Flyer

Considering I flew at least 25 times within the last year, you’d never guess that I’m a nervous flyer (unless you’ve already read my 10 Weird & Random Facts About Me blog post). I wasn’t always, but I had a couple of bad flying experiences (really bad turbulence and weather) and so, now both myself and Darren are a bag of nerves the night before and during a flight.

I’m glad to say though that I am definitely coming out the other side of it and I’m not as nervous as I was a few months ago. This is mainly because I have had so many great flights since the bad ones and for practicing the tips below.

Look Out The Window

This is the thing that relaxes me the most. It’s probably an odd one; I know some people are terrified to look out the window but for me, if I experience turbulence, looking out the window is the best thing I can do. That’s because everything seems so calm and still outside the window. When the plane is shaking, I imagine the worst, but when I look out the window everything is so calm and it’s so comforting. I get panicky during turbulence, so I always opt for a window seat.

Watch The Cabin Crew

If I hear a noise or the plane starts to shake, watching the cabin crew is also very reassuring. They fly all day, every day and so they know what’s normal and what’s not. If they don’t bat an eye lid when the plane shakes or makes a noise, you have nothing at all to worry about.

Think of the Statistics

Some times the numbers just speak from themselves:

  1. There are over 100,000 flights every single day.
  2. The chances of something fatal happening is 1 in 29.4 MILLION. In comparison, to a single car journey which is 1 in 162,000.
  3. There is a greater chance of you becoming the President of the United States or winning an Oscar, than dying in a plane crash. Read more crazy likelihoods here.

When you think of it, there really is no need to be nervous while flying!

Do Some Research 

As I said, if the plane makes a sound or shakes, it makes me nervous. So a few months ago, I did some research as to what turbulence actually is and why the plane makes certain noises.

Now, I like to think of turbulence as speed bumps and when I hear a noise, I can reassure myself that it’s the wings moving position, the engine adjusting, the wheels coming down in preparation for landing etc.

Where as before, well…I’d rather not share any negative thoughts here, but I always thought the worst. This interview with a pilot here, makes me so happy and has definitely helped me so much. I have read it multiple times. If you’re a nervous flyer, well I’m guessing you are if you’re reading this post :p, definitely give it a read next.

In-flight Entertainment

If noises on the plane make you uneasy, block them out. If you’re anything like me, you’ll be attentively listening out for them! So I prepare some in-flight entertainment so that I can’t hear anything. Here’s what I do:

Download some films or a series from Netflix

Now, I try to keep the genre as light as possible because anything heavy will only add to my anxiety. For example, I was watching Stranger Things when we were coming home from Venice and it had my nerves in bits! My heart was beating out of my chest and my palms were sweating!

In comparison, for my trip to Milan, I watched Jane the Virgin and it was actually a really pleasant flight. So, I recommend something like that to keep you calm and distracted.

Listen to Music and/or Read a Book

The same rules apply here as above. Keep the music gentle; heavy metal won’t comfort you! If you like reading, you could read a book at the same time.

Download an Audiobook

If you don’t like reading, audiobooks might be the way forward for you. Most books come in an audio version nowadays. You can download them to both IOS and Android phones.

Go to Sleep

If all of the above fails, go to sleep! I find it hard to sleep on any normal night, but on a plane I can make myself sleep immediately. Before we even leave the runway, I can go asleep.

It’s a way of protecting myself I think, it’s crazy. So if you’re lucky enough to be one of those people who can close their eyes and sleep immediately, try that! Hopefully, you’ll be landing the next time you open your eyes.

I hope you found the above helpful. I am a nervous flyer at the minute, but I won’t always be, and it will never stop me from seeing this big beautiful world, regardless. If you’re feeling more comfortable already and fancy planning a trip, I have so many travel blog posts here to give you some inspo.

Thanks for reading as always and I really hope you are on the road to not being a nervous flyer anymore,

4 Comments

  1. Megan
    April 9th, 2018 / 17:42

    I’m due to fly to the us of a next week and I’m a very nervous flyer I get so anxious I’m sick for the whole flight I shake and sweat and cry endlessly! Soon as the plane shakes my mind goes into over drive! Even tho I know the cabin crew would do it as their job if it wasn’t safe x

    • May 9th, 2018 / 10:43

      Hi Megan. I hope the flight went ok for you? xx

  2. March 12th, 2018 / 21:54

    Nice post! I used to be a really nervous flyer but now it’s second nature for me. I still hate turbulence but that’s better than downright refusing to fly.
    Róisín
    totallyro.blogspot.ie

    • March 19th, 2018 / 08:50

      Ah I’m delighted you’re over it Roisin. I’m getting there xxx

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A Lifestyle Blog by Carly Colgan Bates