Advice for first time flyers(9 Posts)
Due to go on holiday tomorrow heading for Disney land Paris
I've been before but was a coach tour and went across to France by boat so this is technically my first time flying( though according to my mum I was on a plane when I was 1/2 years old but obviously don't remember it ) I'm nervous especially the take off and landing due to story's I've heard about your ears
Any tips for a nervous flyer and her daughter (be her first time)
What advice is there on ears popping etc
Ps I suffer from hayfever
If your ears feel blocked on landing - close your mouth, pinch your nostrils together with your fingers and breath out pushing out the air. Your ears will pop and clear. You may have to do this a couple of times.
Have a lovely trip!
Ear popping happens on the way up too! Shanghai's advice is spot on. Also yawning, sipping water, or sucking a hard sweetie.
I assume you know all about the restrictions on hand luggage and hold luggage, the information should be with your tickets/boarding passes.
When you go through security you'll be asked to remove clothing with large chunks of metal - within reason of course. They won't make you take your trousers off just because the zip is huge! But shoes and belts often have to come off, jewellery etc. So wear as little metal as possible and make sure you can get shoes etc off and on quickly and easily. I remember waiting for ages while dd2 struggled with a very funky pair of biker type boots!
Its a short flight, but always make sure that you get on a plane with a full stomach and an empty bladder , not the other way round!
Remember hand luggage restrictions are liquids, gels and pastes.
Check seat pocket etc before getting off the plane. I've never known anything left behind be returned.
Wear belt during flight. Once landed, sit and wait for crowd to leave , you aren't going anywhere until they do. Only exception is if you are actually sitting by the door.
Safety - Do the cabin crew the courtesy of listening to the briefing. The important bit is to count the rows to your nearest exit. Also have essentials (wallet, passport) in pockets not bag. And don't wear silly heels.
Planes make loud noises and rattles. Don't worry.
My main issues with flying have been blocked ears, this advice If your ears feel blocked on landing - close your mouth, pinch your nostrils together with your fingers and breath out pushing out the air. is recommended, but for me, I find that forcing myself to yawn during the flight is actually easier and puts less pressure on my ears (esp. if I'm a bit coldy or have hayfever, my ears can feel a bit blocked up even without flying).
Things to expect (if you're taking hand luggage only)...
Before the flight:
- Check in online the night before - if you're travelling as a family group it's usually worth paying a little more to book seats next to each other
- Pack all of your liquids (that you're carrying in your hand luggage) into a sandwich bag the night before (no single container over 100ml) - the airport staff might ask you to decant it into one of their bags before you fly, but it's useful to have all liquids together, and be sure they fit into a bag
- Check the max. hand luggage size for your airline and make sure you don't exceed it
- Double check which terminal you're leaving from, sometimes they are miles away from each other
- Arrive at the airport a good two hours before your flight
- Head to 'Departures'
- Go through security (take off any jewellery, belts, coats, get any electrical items out of your bag and put everything in the plastic trays to go through the scanner) sometimes they ask you to take of shoes/boots
- Don't be alarmed if when you walk through the human scanner it goes off, this can be something simple like your under-wire or button on your jeans - you may be patted-down by a same-sex security person
- Once you're through security find an information board and check when your Gate is due to be announced, keep within close proximity of the boards, so as you can keep an eye on departures
- When your gate is called, head there immediately, sometimes they are AGES away
- Expect to spend 30-40 minutes at the gate, sometimes longer, remember to buy a bottle of water once you get through security
On the flight:
- Get to your seats, there is often a rush for overhead storage, don't worry - the airline staff are adept at getting all the hand luggage on board (very occasionally there is too much hand luggage and they have to put some of it under the plane in the hold, you should be able to avoid this esp. if you're travelling with a child)
- It's good to have a small light bag in your hand luggage so as the case can go in the overhead locker, but you can keep some bits and bobs with you (drink, any cosmetics you'll want, a jumper, books/music/toys, pen and paper, wallet, baby wipes, passports and boarding passes)
- The staff will show a live or recorded safety message - I always try to look attentive, just because it makes me cringe when people ignore this
- Make sure your seat-belt is done up (if you need an extender the staff will have one), your bags are under the seat in front of you (unless you're in an emergency row - which the staff will tell you about) and your electrical items are turned off (or on 'airplane mode')
- The plane will taxi to the runway, this can be boring and sometimes the plane has to queue for their turn to take off - the pilot is usually pretty good at keeping you up to date
- The plan will go fast down the runway and you'll feel the front wheels lifting off - even as an experienced flyer (I used to fly monthly for work), this still feels a bit weird and my hands still sweat.
- You'll then realise you're taking off - you'll feel like you're tilted really far back in your seat, almost facing directly upwards, it's normal for the engine noises to be a bit irregular at this point
- When the plane is first in the air it sometimes sounds quite quiet and it's easy to think the engine has died, this is not the case, it's just the changing air pressure
- You'll quickly be above the clouds, and (during daylight) it'll always be sunny up there!
- Remember to force yourself to yawn regularly (to avoid your ears clogging) the plane sounds change regularly, there's nothing to worry about if it feels like you go from accelerating to kind of 'hanging in the air' or you hear the engine tone change - again it's all just the plane moving between areas of differing air pressure and temperature
- Turbulence is common, esp. as you pass over the coast of a country (over the end of the UK/North Sea for instance) - turbulence is utterly harmless, at worst just a bit scary
Check seat pocket etc before getting off the plane. I've never known anything left behind be returned. this is also VERY true, it's so easy to leave a pair of earphones in that pocket!
ps sorry this is so long!
Thanks everyone very helpfull
Be a experience for us both kinda looking forward to it now
I've been reading about ear plugs do they really help?
Take off and landing are the best bit - esp if you have a window
... the acceleration and hard braking is fantastic!
you don't need earplugs unless you need a snooze - do the yawning/swallowing and you'll be fine
Sucking a sweet can help with landing.
Just to clarify the thing on liquids etc, not only do all of them need to be in 100 ml or less containers (larger container with 100 or less ml stuff won't qualify), in plastic bags with less than 1 litre total, but those bags need to be taken out and scanned separately. So don't have 6 people with 10 cases with various bags of toiletries somewhere among them... Ditto all electronics and cables.
Do go through security as soon as possible, and then to the gate when it is called (though then likely to be lots of waiting - you may be able to find the gate and return to play areas or shops if it's close by). Lots of waiting about in general.
The flaps on the wings are meant to go up and down, not always at the same time.
Do use the toilet shortly before coming in to land - some airports don't have any for a while.
I love take-off but hate landing. If you are landing at a busy place then
you seem to hover in the sky for ages (in a Q) and then gradually descend
until you hit the runway. If it is an island landing can be accompanied
by fantastic views of both sea and land. The plane can rock a little but
this is quite normal due to crosswinds.
On most larger planes when landing once all the wheels are on the runway the pilot applies reverse thrust brake action. It can be noisy but nothing to worry about. It slows the plane down enabling the pilot to keep it under better control
It will not stop the landing it just slows it down so
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