The flight of their lives

In most departure lounges there will be someone sitting nervously in a corner. A few of them will leave without ever taking to the air. Tony Mallett visited Leeds Bradford Airport to find out how Virgin Atlantic Airways is helping travellers overcome a fear of flying.

LEEDS BRADFORD

On an otherwise mundane Sunday afternoon at the beginning of this year the flight information display screens at Leeds Bradford Airport (LBA) displayed an unusual destination – a departure to Leeds. That short flight was the culmination of a day during which 125 people learned techniques to help overcome aviophobia – a fear of flying – an affliction that research suggests affects as many as 30% of the population.

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