Sunday, 1 April 2012

Top Ten Fears For Fear of Flying

For those of you that have been following us for years, you will know that we used to do a Newsletter which went out each month.  We have stopped doing that now as we have found a better way to communicate - this blog & Twitter & Facebook.

One of the popular series of articles was 'Top Ten Fears our Clients Used to Have'

We are going to run this in the blog for those that wanted it.

Here is part one below - the rest to follow over the next couple of weeks.

Welcome to the Virgin Atlantic ‘Flying Without Fear' Newsletter. We set up our
programme in 1997 to help people like you.

This is the course that puts you back in  charge of your life.  Literally thousands of people like you have attended our ‘Flying Without Fear' courses and if you want to know what a few of them
have said, please go to and look at our testimonials page or have a look at our ‘Message Board’ to see what people have  written.

Good Luck! 

Sir Richard Branson

Richard has always been behind our programme. He has always believed in it
because he has seen personally the results it gives people like you. People like
you who have now beaten their fear.

This report will cover the 10 areas of fear people have told us about on our
courses. We hope that you enjoy it.

 Here are the top ten reasons that we have found that people are scared of flying.

Top Ten Reasons (Not necessarily in your order) We Have Found People Are
Scared of Flying:

1/ Lack of Control
2/ Enclosed Spaces
3/ Turbulence
4/ Airpockets
5/ Crashing
6/ Noises
7/ Engine Failure
8/ Terrorist Threat
9/ Falling Out The Sky
10/ Panic Attacks

Fear No.1 – Lack of control

Let's talk about control or lack of control. This is an interesting one for us. We
know that the people that come on our courses are intelligent and capable
people. In many other aspects of their lives they are extremely successful. For
some reason, this fear is the one that eludes them. The one that they cannot
shake off! Why is that? As you will see from the blogs that will follow,
there are millions of reasons for it and your reason will be personal to you!

Lack of control could be defined as, 'When the presenting circumstances are
perceived to be beyond what the individual thinks he/she can deal with.' In other
words, something happens and we tell ourselves that it is more than we can cope
with. At some point in our brain, a switch goes on that says, 'whoaaaa - this is
too much for me!'

The reality is that we are not in control in most aspects of our lives. We will say
to ourselves, 'I am in control when I am driving my car.' 'I can pull over, speed
up, stop and get out.' Yes, of course we can do that. However, was your car's
engine oils (all of them) checked within the last 24 hours? Do you have several
backup systems for each component within the car should they fail like an aircraft
does? Do you re-sit your driving test every 6 months? The pilots of commercial
aircraft have to be tested that often in a simulator on a pass or fail basis. Every
year they also sit an instrument flying test and in addition, an operational
proficiency test in front of senior training captain.

This is meant to be facetious as we don't really have 'control' over our vehicles,
the road conditions and especially not the other drivers. It is likely that we will
pass our driving test at about 17 or 18 years of age and not be expected to do
one again ever!

The point we are making here is that it is true; you are not in control of the
aircraft. (A point I am personally very happy about!) The people that are in
control of the aircraft are not occasional 'having a laugh' type pilots. These are
professionals that are tested every three months on their abilities to fly. They are
tested medically every year until 40 and then every 6 months after that. They are
constantly in fear of losing their pilot's licence and career if they do not pass the
stringent tests.

So, in summary, we are not in control. They are. But I challenge you to find a
more professional group of people to look after you. Remember, they are also
on the same aircraft. They also have families that they want to get back to.
Airlines are the only business where safety comes before business. Without  safety, they have no business!

Take care

Paul & Richard
Virgin Atlantic Flying Without Fear

1 comment:

  1. I just got today's email and it was perfect timing. I was just googling fear of flying and my next step was to go back and read through the 'ten reasons' from your older emails. I'm flying from Sydney, Nova Scotia (via Toronto) to Paris tomorrow and trying not to panic. I fly nervously about 3 times a year, but it has been ages since I've been on such a long flight. Your 10 reasons do help, thanks so much for that. I don't think I'll ever fly over to England to take the fear of flying course, but I really appreciate the emails! :) Thank-you!