Skip to main content Skip to header navigation

How to zap the fear of flying


Do you cringe with anxiety every time the possibility of a flight comes up? Learn how to zap this fear and start enjoying traveling!

Fearful woman on plane

My husband is terrified of flying — so much so that we’ve never been on a flight together. If we were to ever fly, he’s already informed me that he’ll need a lot of liquid courage just to get on the plane. While this may work, it’s not practical (especially if you have two kids in tow). Instead, it’s best to conquer the fear head on and learn to fly with ease.

Let’s look at the stats

New research shows that your odds of dying in a plane crash are 11 million to one. You’re much more likely to die in a car crash, yet you probably drive every day. You’re also more likely to die in the airport itself than on the plane.

If your plane were to crash, you’re more likely to survive now more than ever before, and that’s because planes today are more structurally sound. Seats are stronger, carpeting is less likely to catch on fire, doors open easier and the plane is just built better. So even if your plane were to crash, you would have a good chance of surviving.

Overcoming your fear of flying

Learn about airplane safety. Before your flight, read up on stats like the ones above. Find out why traveling by plane is one of the safest modes of transportation. By being rational, you have a better chance at overcoming your fear.

Did you know? The only modes of transportation safer than airplanes are elevators and escalators!

Bring a book. Instead of viewing the flight as a gigantic tube flying through the air tackling turbulence, view the flight as a place for you to relax — because it is! Get caught up on the latest celebrity gossip in your favorite magazines, or read that book you haven’t had the chance to get to yet. If you have kids, and they won’t be on the plane, this is your chance for some much-needed alone time. Don’t let anything — even your fear of flying — get in the way of that!

Seek treatment for anxiety. Most people who have a fear of flying report tremendous anxiety before boarding a flight. Get professional help a few months beforehand. Learn coping strategies, such as breathing techniques, attend group therapy sessions or get medication.

Sit at the front of the plane. If possible, purchase a ticket for a seat at the front of the aircraft, or let the check-in attendant know that you’d like a seat at the front due to your flying anxiety. You won’t feel near as much turbulence at the front of the plane as you would at the back.

Think about the destination, not getting there. Traveling is fun! Even if you’re flying for a work trip, chances are you’ll get to see and experience a new and exciting place. Focus on the big picture, and don’t even think about the flight. If you find your mind wandering, immediately stop yourself and focus on something else.

More on flying

Flying with baby: Make the process easier
How to beat the holiday madness when flying

Surviving a long flight: What to keep in your carry-on

Leave a Comment