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There are plenty of reasons to want to avoid flying whenever possible. It’s expensive, it’s uncomfortable, and it’s not exactly a pleasant experience for anybody who is afraid of heights or has other anxieties about being in a small metal tube hurtling through the sky at several thousand feet above the ground. However, there are also many reasons why you might have to fly somewhere— whether as part of your job or because that’s the only way to get there. To most people, this poses something of a quandary: How do you travel safely while avoiding an unnerving experience? The answer is simple: Use your car if you can, take a train when you can’t drive, stay away from smaller airports like those found in private airfields, and book flights with airlines that have great safety records.
What Determines Airline Safety?
There are several factors that determine airline safety. The most important of these is the number of accidents per 100 million passengers. Ideally, you’re looking for a ratio of 0.00 or even lower, but 0.30 is more than acceptable. Another important factor is the number of mishandled bags per 1,000 passengers. Ideally, you should be looking for numbers below 10 for this one, but anything below 30 is acceptable. Finally, you want to look at fines and violations. Ideally, you’re looking for airlines with no major fines or violations.
Train Travel is Safe too
While flying is statistically safer than driving, there is no way to know if you will have an accident due to other people’s carelessness. On a train, however, you have more control over your fate: You don’t have to worry about getting into an accident with another car or a distracted driver. Trains are also more comfortable than flying, as you have more leg room and more room to stretch out. In addition, you can bring food and drinks on trains, and they often have entertainment systems as well. If you have a long train trip, you may even be able to get some work done on your laptop or other device!
Safest Car Options
If you must travel by car, you want to look for cars that have been safety-tested and have above-average safety ratings. Another way to increase your safety is to travel with a skilled and experienced driver. If you’re driving on your own, there are a few things you can do to make your car safer. These include making sure your tires are properly inflated and your car is in good condition (get it checked out by a mechanic if you notice anything wrong). You also want to make sure your car is properly maintained to increase your safety on the road.
Finally, make sure to book flights with airlines that have a proven track record of safety. Southwest Airlines and American Airlines have some of the best safety records, though others like JetBlue, Virgin Atlantic, and British Airways are not too far behind. If you must fly, do everything you can to make sure it’s as safe as possible. Avoid small airports, make sure you’re flying with a trustworthy airline, and stay hydrated and rested before your flight!