HOW TO OVERCOME THE FEAR OF FLYING?
As much as I admit right away, I’ve never been a big fan of air travel. I take it very often because I love traveling, but it is not a part of the fun for me, especially when it comes to long-haul flights. So here are all the tricks I have developed over the years to make travel by plane as unpleasant as possible.
Choose Your Seat on the Plane As Soon As Possible
It is the time when one chooses his place in the plane to the registration when arriving at the airport. Now, it can sometimes be done as soon as the ticket is purchased, or at the opening of the electronic registration, 24 or 48 hours before the flight. The rules vary according to each airline. This is becoming more and more a paid service, and not only in low-cost airlines. For those who wish to have a specific seat (porthole or corridor), it is better to study the conditions set by the company when buying his ticket and to note on his agenda the date and time from when we can ‘record. I invite you to do so as soon as possible because I have already had all the seats already allocated even one month before the flight.
Hublot or corridor? It’s a bit of an eternal debate … Thereupon, everyone’s position. Those who want to enjoy the view and be able to sleep against the bulkhead prefer porthole. I who need to get up often to go stretch my legs, I am an unconditional corridor seat, for long-haul flights in any case. Otherwise, for short flights, I choose porthole. For those who want to have more space on the plane and maybe have the chance to have two or three seats, it is better to choose a seat in the bottom of the plane. On the other hand, you should also know that this is where you feel the most turbulence (like at the back of the bus or a car).
For those who are still in the stage of finding the ideal plane ticket, then I would advise you to multiple searches on flight comparators such as Easy Voyage or Google Flight for example. For a long-haul flight I do not necessarily look for the cheapest ticket possible and I pay attention to the level of comfort of the airline: each year Skytrax establishes a classification that is interesting to consult.
Comfortable Dressing and Warm Clothing
A plane trip is not a fashion show! So of course, it is better to avoid having a look too neglected, but the essential thing is to have a comfortable outfit and to be able to put or remove layers according to the temperature. One tends to forget it when one leaves the summer to a hot country: airports and airplanes are air-conditioned places and it can be very cold! With the fatigue of the trip, the body is more vulnerable and it’s very easy to get sick after a long haul flight. Not the ideal to start your vacation well … Every time I travel by plane, I plan a warm sweater and a scarf or a scarf. For the bottom, either wide pants (the tight jeans should really to be avoided!), or cotton leggings under a dress or tunic (legging tee-shirt, it’s really not class!). The big advantage of dressing and leggings is to be able to remove them easily on arrival if you go in a warm country, and hop, we find ourselves in summer clothes! To avoid having the legs swelling, I also put stockings, but that I talk about later…
Well Prepared Luggage
The first thing to do is to check with the airline the authorized dimensions of the cabin luggage. Since the sizes are different, I recommend that the dimensions of IATA, the International Air Transport Association: 55 cm long, 35 cm wide and 20 cm depth, handle and any wheels included. Normally, it’s for most companies. Here is a selection of cabin luggage if necessary. With the vast majority of airlines, you can have both a handbag and a cabin luggage, but it’s like checking the conditions when you buy your plane ticket. With EasyJet, for example, you can only have one bag and you have to be able to put your bag in your cabin baggage.
The next important thing is to prepare your cabin luggage. First thing: to put all its valuables and especially its electronic equipment like computer, camera, tablet … The flights are frequent in the luggage in the hold, even if they are equipped with padlocks. In addition, given the way they are balanced on carpets, I would not like to know fragile objects inside.
Another thing to consider: the case (not so rare) where you would not have your luggage in the hold on arrival. For my part, it happened to me and it takes several days before the recovery (if it is recovered!!). When you have a stopover, you can also end up having to spend an unexpected night at the airport if there is a delay in the plane or other problem … It has happened to me also, I always plan underwear and a tee -shirt in case. I also always have in my cabin luggage the chargers of my electronic devices. Finally, for those who take medication, ditto: keep them with you in your cabin luggage!
Get All Essential Accessories
To improve onboard comfort, it is better to get some accessories, especially if you are flying overnight. Essential for me if you want to be able to sleep a little: a cushion of the neck and a mask of sleep. In addition, if you want to watch movies on board, I recommend having a personal headphone, because the headphones provided in aircraft are very often of poor quality. At least, the Smartphone headphones will do the trick (with an adapter for the jack of the plane), but the best is to have real headphones with an anti-noise function. Be aware that the environment of an airplane is very noisy with the noise of engines, not to mention talkative passengers or crying babies. For my part, I have the QC 35 of Bose and since I tried it, I cannot do without it (to read, my test of this headphone audio). The noise reduction is amazing and I also use it to sleep. It really feels like a bubble, isolated from external disturbances. Otherwise, there is the more economical solution of earplugs.
In addition, I plan a mini toilet kit to refresh and moisturize my skin. You have to know that the air on board an airplane is very dry. I always carry a few samples of moisturizer; it really does well to the skin. Also for a toothbrush, mini toothpaste, deodorant (small format), intimate wipes … For the eyes, I also have unidoses of physiological serum to rehydrate during the flight. The rule for liquid products and cream in the airplane is that they must be less than 100ml and they must be put in a plastic bag Ziploc type of freezing. Otherwise, it is possible to find travel kits made with small products.
As a bonus, it’s not always easy to fall asleep while on a plane. For my part, I take a melatonin tablet when it’s time to sleep at my destination. Melatonin is a hormone produced by the body to fall asleep and a priori, there is no side effect. All in all, for my part, it works well, and I take it for 4 or 5 days after the flight when I have a significant jet lag. I tried different brands and the one that works best (for me anyway) is chronotron. The tablets are to be melted under the tongue and it works faster than a classic tablet that should be digested.
Things to Do On Board: Walking and Hydrating
These two tips are surely among the most important! One of the biggest risks on a long plane trip is to do a venous thrombosis, that is, a blood clot is formed because of prolonged immobility, and it can be fatal if this clot ascends towards the heart or the lungs. The Instinct Voyageur Blog has written a very comprehensive article on this problem. To avoid this, three strategies to adopt: to get up regularly (at least every three hours) to circulate the blood in the legs; while sitting, make from time to time reels with the ankles and flexions/extensions of the feet; for people at risk, wear compression stockings. For my part, even though I have never had any real traffic problems, I have been wearing compression stockings for many years on long plane trips. This avoids having your feet and ankles swelling and you feel much better on arrival.
Another important point: drink plenty of water. Again, the fault to the very dry environment of airplane air that further dehydrates the body. Besides, to feel like peeing forces us to get up and walk a little … Otherwise, a little trick to always have water available: during the security check, I always keep in my bag a small bottle of water empty plastic, which I will fill in afterward in the drinking water dispensers of the airports (there is almost always and it is free). It avoids having to buy a bottle of water at 3 Euros in the area before boarding and like that, I always have to drink. I also fill it on board with the large bottles of water in free access in the “cooking areas” of the plane. Like that,
Relax on board
The ideal course is to travel on board a good airline that offers a good onboard entertainment system like Emirates, for example, regularly cited as one of the best. But in case, it is better to plan nevertheless what to take care of, like a good book, magazines or have some movies on his laptop or tablet. For my part, I have a playlist stock that I can listen in offline mode on my Smartphone with the latest applications. I have one with quiet music that I use to fall asleep.
Manage your fear of the plane
Fortunately, everyone is not afraid of the plane, but for those who have this problem, it can be damn disabling and spoil the pleasure of traveling. Although I am a great traveler, I have long been frightened by plane, but it’s been much better since I took an internship against the fear of the plane. For those who do not have the budget (380 Euros minimum), it is possible to download the application that corresponds to this course and which is free: Fofly. The main lessons of the course are summarized here, and relaxation exercises can be performed through cardiac coherence and listening to relaxing music. This is what I do during the flight in case of turbulence. I also have on my phone a playlist of music that I like well and it allows me to relax and enjoy the flight better.