Tue, Jul 23rd, 2024


 

What to Expect During Your First Flight

Preparing for your first flight can be a stressful time. Be advised: you are not the only one afraid to fly. Studies show that 18.1% of passengers are anxious about flying for the first time, and 12.6% say they are afraid. If you have anxiety about an upcoming flight, here are some tips you can take to calm your nerves before and during the flight.

Pack Your Bags

Take some extra time before your flight to prepare for the big day. Check the airline’s baggage weight limits and pack your bags according to their guidelines. When packing your carry-on, include some things that will help you relax on the flight. A lot of travelers pack their carry-on bag with a favorite book or coloring book, relaxing music and headphones, a travel pillow, or an eye mask for in-flight naps. If you have a comfort object that helps you stay calm, be sure to bring that too!

The Night Before

Before you leave for your flight, visit your airline’s website to check in online; this step lets you skip the check-in lines at the airport. Keep any liquids in your carry-on bag under three ounces and in one clear, quart-sized bag. Store this bag in an easily accessible location so you can remove it easily in security. Set out your clothes for the next morning, and make sure they are comfortable. Wear shoes you can take off quickly during security.

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Flight Day

On the day of your flight, make sure you get to the airport at least two hours early. This will give you time to go through security and find your terminal. When you board the plane, look around and find the emergency exits in case of an emergency. During takeoff, you will hear several loud noises that may startle you: the pilots are releasing the landing gears and flaps on the wings for takeoff. You may hear a series of chimes during the flight—these are normal! They indicate when you can leave your seat, when the flight attendants are serving snacks, and when you should remain in your seat. The plane may shake slightly back and forth from turbulence; this happens during every flight and passes quickly.

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Staying Calm

Here are some tips for staying calm during the flight:

  • Listen to relaxing music or longer episodes of a podcast
  • Try sleeping with a travel pillow and a face mask
  • Read one of your favorite books
  • Watch the in-flight movie
  • Take a few deep breaths if you feel stressed
  • Go to the bathroom halfway through the flight
  • Keep a stress ball or fidget cube on hand to occupy yourself

After your first flight, you may still feel nervous about flying for long periods of time. Ithaca Tompkins Regional Airport is happy to provide any accommodations or advice for any nervous flyers. If you have a fear of flying, we’ve provided some useful advice to help you out. For more information about how we can help make your flight more enjoyable, visit our travel experience page to connect with your airline or contact us.

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