This article is dedicated to all those people who although they love to travel and see new places, there is a part of them that blocks and paralyzes them and facing a journey is not so much fun: the fear of fly .

For some of you, flying is simply a hassle, high fares, airport delays and lost luggage, not to mention the endless queues at the gate. But for other of you travelers, all this is secondary and sometimes not even taken into account because the main problem is not the inconvenience that flying implies but more than anything else: it is terrifying to take a plane.

Fear of flying can be caused by a number of factors, including claustrophobia or a fear of heights. Some of you feel irrational anxiety that your plane will malfunction and crash no matter how many times you hear the stats on how much safer flying a plane is than staying in a car. Others, for the most part given the age in which we live, worry about terrorist hijackings or panic at the idea of not being able to do anything if something happens because they are not in control of the plane that transports them.

Regardless of why you are afraid of flying, there are some steps you can take to alleviate your fears. For those of you who are determined not to let the fear of flying changes your lifestyle, and to all those who have decided to say enough and put a definitive end to this fear, here are some tips to overcome the fear of flying.

First of all, learning the basics of how airplanes work can go a long way in relieving anxiety, for example: understanding how an airplane can continue to fly even if an engine fails can help you feel less worried about your airplane malfunction. . There is an explanation for everything easy to understand in how planes stay in flight, what causes turbulence and what is behind those scary sounds during takeoff and landing.

Familiarize yourself with your aircraft:
Knowing what your plane looks like can make everything look a little less scary.

Choose an aisle seat:
Most airlines give you the option to choose a seat via the booking engines when you book your flight (some for a fee, some for free). Request an aisle seat, particularly if you are prone to claustrophobia you will feel less surrounded by other people and will be able to get up and move more easily in the cabin. This also makes it easier to avoid looking out the window if those soaring views make you nervous.

Think positive:
In the days leading up to your trip, it’s easy to let flight anxiety build up. Instead, try to focus on more positive things, like all the fun things you’ll do once you reach your destination. It is really a shame to have to foreclose on the opportunity for new experiences for the fear of flying. Distract yourself while you are in flight, listen to music, read a good book, watch TV series with your tablet or mobile phone, alternatively I give you another tip: stay up late or don’t sleep at all the night before the flight that you have planned, that way when you get on board, sleep will be inevitable and you will not notice anything.

To the airport:
As soon as you arrive at the airport, do not rush, do not be in a hurry (so arrive at the airport at least 3 hours before your flight is scheduled) take your time.
Running to the gate and worrying about missing your plane will only add to your anxiety.

On the plane:
Meet the crew.
If there is time before your flight, ask to meet the pilot of your plane. Alternatively, spend some time chatting with a flight attendant. Often, meeting people who are on hand, knowledgeable and knowledgeable can make the plane feel like a friendlier and more reassuring environment.

Tune in:
Make sure your phone or tablet is stocked with soothing music to help you get into a peaceful mood. You could also download meditation sessions (I recommend the ASMR ones, they help to relax more) so you can listen to them when your phone is in airplane mode.

To breathe:
As anxiety increases, breathing is very important, deep breathing is immediate relief from stress. Breathe slowly and deeply for a count of five or 10 seconds marked by the breath.

Read or watch something funny:
As previously mentioned, prepare a magazine or good book to take your mind off what is happening. Order a comedy on your plane’s in-flight entertainment system or prepare some of your favorite movies on your laptop or tablet, they will help you distract yourself, pass the time and why not even doze off.

Have a drink:
Some recommend drinking alcohol to calm the nerves. This is fine in moderation, keep in mind that alcohol shouldn’t be combined with anti-anxiety medications. Additionally, alcohol can contribute to dehydration, particularly in the arid environment of an airplane; if you indulge in a cocktail, be sure to follow it with plenty of water.

Avoid caffeine:
As you well know, this and other stimulants can make you even more nervous.

Go with the flow:
Turn on the air intakes that we find above your head once you are seated in our seat on the plane; the airflow can help you feel less claustrophobic, it will help you feel like you are breathing better.

Keep these tips in mind, and brace yourself. If you want to try to fly without flying for real, I have another tip for you: the airline Alitalia offers flight simulations (for a fee) just for people who are afraid, terrified of flying. During the simulation you will experience the sensation of flying for real and you will see and hear everything that happens on board. In this way you will be prepared for what awaits you, and slowly you will get used to it. And who knows, maybe you’ll like it later.

Good flight everyone.