Flight attendant: These are the tips you need to know if you have a fear of flying – and the foods to eat and avoid

  • A Virgin Australia flight attendant from Perth shared her top tips for flying
  • Sarah said if you’re nervous, sit at the front of the plane to avoid turbulence
  • She said you should also avoid caffeine as it can make you more jittery 
  • Good snacks are fruit and veggies with high water content and umami snacks 

A flight attendant has shared the tips you need to know if you have a fear of flying, and the ideal seat to book to combat any jitters.

Virgin Australia employee Sarah Goodwin, from Perth, said she has several ‘good tips’ for nervous flyers, as well as the one drink you should never have before you get on board.

‘When booking your seat, try and book a seat as close to the front of the aircraft as you can, because that is where you experience the least amount of turbulence,’ Sarah said in a recent TikTok video.

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A flight attendant has shared the tips you need to know if you have a fear of flying, and the ideal seat to book to combat any jitters (Sarah Goodwin pictured)

The impact of turbulence is felt less at the front of the plane because it’s beyond the centre of gravity on the aircraft.

Alternatively, turbulence is also less noticeable near the wings of the plane because the wings allow the plane to stay balanced. 

Sarah’s second tip is to speak to the flight attendants if you feel nervous or apprehensive. 

‘At the end of the day, we deal with people all the time so we are good at talking to them about things like this,’ she said. 

‘Don’t ever feel like it’s something that we find annoying because I absolutely love to calm people’s nerves when they’re scared.’ 

Best foods to enjoy before or on a flight 

* Fruit (especially with high water content like melon)

* Unsalted dried nuts

* Umami-flavoured snacks

* Water

* Lean proteins with minimal dressing

* Light, easy to digest veggies (especially with high water content like cucumber)

Worst foods to avoid before or on a flight 

* Kale and cabbage

* Brussels sprouts

* Cauliflower and broccoli

* Beans

* Caffeine

* Alcohol 

* Carbonated drinks

* Dried fruit 

The flight attendant (pictured) recommends you avoid caffeine before your flight if you’re a nervous flyer – and other foods to avoid include salty and overly processed snacks

When it comes to what you should avoid if you’re a nervous flyer, Sarah said it’s a good idea to limit your coffee consumption.

‘Before your flight, try not to have anything caffeine-related because that can enhance your anxiety and make you more nervous and jittery,’ she explained.

Other foods to avoid before a flight include salty and processed foods as they aren’t easy to digest at different altitudes and cruciferous vegetables, which can sit in the large intestine for several hours while your body digests them.

Flight attendants also recommend you avoid alcohol, carbonated drinks, beans and dried fruits.

On the other hand, the best foods to enjoy on board include unsalted nuts, fruit and umami-flavoured snacks.

The reason why these work is because the dryness of the cabin may reduce your tastebuds ability to taste by up to 30 per cent, which is why plane food is often either bland, over sweet, or over salty. 

However, the flavour profile of umami is unaffected – so you can go ahead and enjoy low-sodium soy sauce, tomatoes and and seaweed. 


Foods that are good to enjoy include fruit and veggies with a high water content like melon and cucumber, as well as umami-flavoured snacks which you can still taste despite altered tastebuds (Sarah pictured)

Lastly, Sarah said having ‘something to focus on’ can really distract you from your nerves.

‘Whether that be reading a book, listening to music or even doing a word search, whatever gets your mind preoccupied, try and do it,’ she said. 

Distraction can work wonders at calming nausea and nerves.

Thousands who saw the TikTok clip were quick to thank the flight attendant for sharing her wisdom.

‘Booking business class and doing flight simulators helped me heaps, you’re spot on about the front of the plane, I used to only go the back,’ one person commented.

‘I get so nervous about flying so this will definitely help,’ added another. 

The flight attendant previously lifted the lid on what airline staff are really looking for  when checking the boarding passes of passengers before they take their seats.

Sarah said that instead of checking the ticket to see where the passenger is sitting, the staff are actually checking to make sure the person is on the right flight.

‘When we’re looking at your boarding passes, we are not looking for your seat number,’ Sarah said in a now-deleted TikTok.

‘We are looking for the destination, your flight number and the date.’

 

Sarah has built up a TikTok following sharing a look at her glamorous life as a flight attendant (pictured); she revealed she uses an entire can of hairspray to fix her hair

Sarah has built up a TikTok following sharing a look at her glamorous life as a flight attendant.

Recent videos include the types of flight attendants you come across, her experience of flying the ‘red-eye’ flight and a typical day in her life.

She confessed she likes to put her hair up in a high ponytail for practicality – and almost uses ‘an entire can of hairspray to fix it every time’.

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