There have been two reported instances this week in which passengers and flight attendants aboard commercial planes were injured after the planes hit serious turbulence.

News like this can make nervous air travelers even more skittish. Here are five common tips we ve found on numerous travel websites to help you out if you have anxiety over flying.

  1. Turbulence is normal. You should expect it and not be surprised by it. That s why you don t often hear the pilots get on the PA to tell you about every little bump. At the same time, you should heed the advice of the flight crew and keep your seatbelt fastened at all times. Also, while you should stretch your legs on long flights, don t stand around lingering in the aisle. You never know when a big bump might happen.
  2. Distract yourself. Bring a laptop or tablet to work on, a DVD player, some music or suffer through the bad in-flight movie. Also, bring some kind of food to eat or candy to suck on that might distract you. You can also talk to the person next to you.
  3. Breathe. It sounds so basic, but experts swear by it. Breathe deeply in through your nose and out through your mouth as slowly as possible.
  4. The statistics are in your favor. Air travel is statistically the safest way to get from Point A to Point B. The Los Angeles Times reports a record-low 265 people died worldwide in air travel accidents. Compare that to the more than 30,000 that die in road traffic accidents in the U.S. annually. Also, think about something positive. Are you traveling to meet an old friend or loved one? Think about how great it s going to be when you see them.
  5. Avoid caffeine. You may not have a lot of options in the way of complimentary beverages, but caffeine will only add to your jitters.
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