Manchester Airport helps passengers escape the fear of flying

October 28th, 2011

A psychologist has been helping calm nervous flyers in Manchester Airport’s executive lounge after bosses noticed a rise in the amount of lounge bookings by passengers with a fear of flying wanting to escape the busy airport environment.

To help relieve some of the worries around flying the airport have teamed up with Virgin Atlantic’s Flying Without Fear course leaders and arranged for a trained therapist in Terminal 1’s Escape Lounge to provide free taster sessions of the techniques they use.

Andrew Harrison, Managing Director for Manchester Airport, said: “Our Escape lounges are perfect for nervous flyers as they offer an oasis of calm in a comfortable and stylish environment away from the hustle and bustle of a busy terminal. We thought that by linking up with Virgin Atlantic’s Flying Without Fear we could help prepare those nervous about catching their flight as we want everyone’s journey to be as stress free as possible.”

Anxious passengers were encouraged to speak with highly reputed therapist; Gill Harvey-Bush who is a Master Practitioner in Neuro-Linguistic Programming and was trained by and now works with Paul McKenna.

Gill covered common worries such as turbulence and panic attacks and took passengers through some practical strategies to help with fear of flying phobia, claustrophobia and any other flying related fears they may have.

Paul Tizzard, Virgin Atlantic’s Flying Without Fear Director, said: “Myself and Richard Conway have been running the Virgin Atlantic Flying Without Fear programme for 15 years. In that time, we have helped over 2,000 people a year to face their fears. We run 20 courses per year from 10 UK airports with around a 98% success rate.”

Terminal 1 Escape Lounge has seen bookings by those with a fear of flying increase as it has separate areas to suit every passenger’s needs. You can decide to unwind in the quiet zones, enjoy a peaceful freshly made dish from the on-site chef or relax further by booking a treatment in the Be Relax Spa private treatment room located in the lounge. For those wanting to keep themselves busy to not think about their imminent flight then the separate entertainment zone for families, including PlayStation 3 and a giant Scalextric racetrack is perfect.

The Flying Without Fear programme has helped thousands of people to overcome their fears, ranging from anxiety at takeoff, to a complete inability to board an aircraft. They have helped many famous faces including Whoopi Goldberg, Coronation Street stars Kym Marsh and Antony Cotton, and ex Atomic Kitten Liz McClarnon.

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