Fear of Flying


Fear of flying is a common psychological problem among travelers. Estimated that between 10 – 40% of all travelers experience some kind of phobia. Many factors can be associated with this condition, all of which need careful consideration and help. Travellers can also experience further pre-travel stress due to poor pre-travel preparation.

Sign & Symptoms

  • Anxious
  • Palpitation
  • Sweats


Travellers should be reassured during pre-travel consultation on the safety of air travel

Advice travelers on anxiety management. Avoiding unnecessary stress-causing situation

Prevention & Precautions

Plan ahead

  • Good planning is essential to overcoming travel fears. Make sure you have visited your family doctor or nurse for general health advice. Sort out any required vaccinations and discuss about any chemoprophylaxis or medication well in advance of your trip.
  • Think about your day of flying before it happens
  • Prebook seats and order any special meals you might require including any childrens meals.
  • If you have any disabilities, contact the airline in advance of your trip to discuss requirements such as wheelchairs or assistance on and off the plane.
  • If you have never traveled to your airport before, allow plenty of time to get there and try a practice runs prior to your day of travel.
  • Arrive in plenty of time for your flight and always allow for delays when you travel.
  • If you feel anxious, do reading, watching television or CD or cassette with calming music.
  • Try to avoid excessive alcohol or drugs as a way of helping you to cope. Alcohol will not get rid of fears and often exacerbates them and it will also leave you dehydrated.
  • If you have to travel a long distance by air, try to avoid connecting flights.
  • If you are suffering from any form of psychological illness or depression, talk it over with your doctor and consider postponing your trip until you feel better.
Last Reviewed : 26 April 2012
Writer : Dr. Norhayati Rusli
Penyemak : Dr. Marzida Abd Latib