Nervous flyer


Hello everyone,

First let me say that I am a veteran flyer, have flown for over 40 years, but have a fear of it that is getting worse, it seems, with each flight.

I am slated to fly American Airlines in April. It is the first time I have flown them. When I HAVE to fly, I prefer Frontier’s Airbus fleet or will go United or another airline for a 737. I absolutely hate to fly but sometimes, with business obligations, I must fly rather than take Amtrak or drive.

That said, Frontier does not go to my destination and United’s connections are not as convenient as American.

Question: I am fretting over this timetable looking at MD80 and MD 83 aircraft, and Boeing 738. These are my choices. As far as air worthiness/problems/personal choice, etc, what comments do you have that will help make my decision.

I appreciate any comments.


I wouldn’t hesitate for a second to fly either aircraft.

The MD80 is the generic name for the MD81/MD82/MD83 aircraft. The DC-9 (the official name for the MD80), like the 737, has been in service since the 1960’s. Both are exceptionally safe aircraft.

There’s another similar thread on your question. Unfortunately, I have to go to a meeting now or else I’d look it up for you. If someone doesn’t give the link, I’ll get it for you in an hour or so.


I think the 738 would be newer than the MD80 and MD83, and thus more technically advanced - if that helps…


See this discussion:


I very much appreciate the responses. Indeed, hearing from both of you, who I greatly respect, helps tremendously.

Now I just need to choose the best times and gather my wits as the day approaches. Will remember the stats that prove flying is safer than driving.

Much appreciated!


Read a book, and read the magazine from AA. Or listen to music from an ipod, or of course the great selections from AA (IFE). They all help make the trip go quicker and smoother.


Get a window seat. Look outside. See our country from the air. Very interesting. Even on the trips I take most often (OAK-Southern California), I can see something different almost every time.

If it’s overcast, look at the clouds. They, too, can be interesting.

I’ve found that unless I turn the volume up real loud, it’s hard to hear sometimes on DVD or CD player. Don’t know about an iPod.


…or enjoy chowing down on some snacks from the 900 calorie snack box!!! :blush: Yum!! :smiling_imp:


Forgot to mention - nighttime is interesting, too. It’s amazing how much dark space there is, especially if you listen to those folks who say the country is overcrowded.


Most people with a fear of flying don’t have a problem with the height, it’s the claustrophobia. Get up and move around the cabin when you can. It will help you feel more in control.