Calm Your Fears About Airline Travel

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Flying may be the safest way to travel, but getting on an airplane still makes many people nervous. If you’re one of them, remember these basic tips for ensuring a calm, safe flight:

  • Fly nonstop when possible.
    Crashes and accidents are rare, but they’re most likely to occur during takeoffs and landings. Look for nonstop flights (remember that direct flights aren’t necessarily nonstop, even though you may not change planes).
     
  • Keep your seatbelt fastened.
    Yeah, you know this already, but it’s still important advice. Sudden turbulence can cause an injury, even when you’re sitting in your seat, if you’re not buckled in.
     
  • Know your exits.
    If you have to evacuate quickly (and evacuations, along with the deployment of emergency oxygen, are the most common emergency situations you’re likely to encounter, although most of the time they’re preventative measures), you don’t want to waste time. Knowing the location of the nearest exit is an excellent precaution.
     
  • Keep your children safe.
    When traveling with a baby or toddler, a child restraint system like a car seat is a must. Check the labels to make sure it’s certified for use on aircraft. Measure the width of your car seat before boarding: If it’s 16 inches or less, it should fit into any airline seat.
     
  • Don’t obsess over finding the safest seat.
    Though you may want to be closest to the emergency exit, the fact is that no one seat is safer than any other on an airplane. For example, in some emergencies passengers are better off remaining in their seats— wherever they are—than trying to scramble off the plane.

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