August 14, 2022
How to Properly Prepare for Your First Airplane Flight

How to Properly Prepare for Your First Airplane Flight

DALLAS – Despite how common international travel is today, there are many people who have never stepped foot on an airplane. If you’re one of these people, it’s likely that your first flight isn’t going to be easy.

Not only do you need to tackle flight etiquette, but you also have to come to terms with the fact that you are going to be soaring 35,000 feet above the ground.

It’s a good idea to prepare ahead of departure so that your first flight can be as comfortable and stress-free as possible. This post will share tips and tricks to help you do just that.

man in white sweater sitting on couch using macbook
Photo by cottonbro on

Secure your Flights

If you haven’t flown before, you likely won’t be familiar with the process of booking flights. Booking flights online can be very difficult because there are often hidden charges and additional costs, as well as limitations on amending and canceling flights.

It’s not uncommon for airlines to advertise flights at specific prices but then charge you extra for your luggage storage and seat selection.

Some airlines won’t allow you to cancel flights either, and may also charge you if you want to move your flights to a later date. The best way to cut down on added charges is by booking your flights well in advance when they will be cheaper.

Flight Etiquette

When you’re on a plane, it’s crucial that you exercise proper flight etiquette. The Compare the Market travel insurance survey below shows that most people think that reclining in their chairs or others doing the same is bad etiquette. You should also avoid making loud noises, disturbing people that are sleeping, and talking over other people’s conversations.

Make sure that you adhere to the airline’s rules too, which they will make clear when you first board the airplane. It’s not polite manners to take off your shoes, either. Always listen to instructions from the plane’s flight attendants; otherwise, you could be asked to leave the plane.

Proper Hygiene

It should come as no surprise that planes are essentially just flying Petri dishes. Considering the COVID-19 pandemic and ongoing monkeypox outbreak, you should exercise proper hygiene, wear a mask, and give people their space.

Whenever you enter the plane’s onboard lavatory, make sure that you thoroughly wash and disinfect your hands before and after entering, so you don’t spread any germs you’re carrying (or pick up anybody else’s!).

Some airlines insist on wearing masks on board flights, while others don’t. Regardless of the airliner’s policy, it’s still a good idea to wear a mask, especially if you personally don’t want to pick up any viruses.

person getting vaccinated
Photo by Gustavo Fring on

Vaccination Requirements

Lastly, make sure that you research your destination’s vaccination and COVID entry requirements. If you don’t meet the nation’s entry requirements, you could be turned away. At the very least, most nations require a negative PCR test, which has to have been taken no later than 48 hours prior to your arrival.

With all of this said, many nations are lifting vaccination and COVID entry requirements, so it’s unlikely that you will have to present PCR tests for most destinations in the near future. It’s still a good idea to look into it, though, just in case.

Flying can be a very fun experience, as long as you prepare and follow the rules. If you suffer from anxiety or are just generally nervous about flying, it might be worth visiting your physician and asking for them to prescribe you some kind of sleep aid or anti-anxiety drug for the flight. 

Featured image: Biometric boarding trials in 2019. Photo: MIA

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