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iFear when iFly...finally, there's an app for that

Virgin Atlantic releases a Flying Without Fear app featuring a panic button replete with breathing exercises for anxious travelers.

Virgin Atlantic releases a Flying Without Fear app that features a panic button replete with breathing exercises.
Virgin Atlantic

Virgin Atlantic has already worked to put passengers at ease with its Flying Without Fear course, which the airline claims has a whopping 98 percent success rate. So it only makes sense that Virgin would release the course in the far more mobile format of an iPhone app.

The $4.99 app features a video that guides the user, who may or may not be able to concentrate on said video, through an explanation of the flight process, frequently asked questions, and relaxation exercises.

There's even a fear attack button, replete with breathing exercises, for the lucky few whose palms haven't gotten so sweaty they've lost their death grip on their iPhone.

If you need persuading, surely Whoopi Goldberg can convince:

I was a skeptic. I hadn't flown in 13 years, but after doing their program, I understood that while my fear was real, there were many things I didn't know or had misinformation about, which they were able to clear up. So what happened? The program works. I now fly. It's that simple.

The app was designed with software company Mental Workout, which operates on the principle that fear is the mind killer, and that people who are more familiar with the aircraft they are in and the noises it is making are more prone to keep buying plane tickets.

"Our first iPhone app will bring the benefits of our successful Flying Without Fear course to millions of people around the world who are now using mobile technology to make their lives better," says Sir Richard Branson, president of Virgin Atlantic and the glowing guy with the perfectly wispy silver tendrils doing the intro video.

Oh yeah, and if you actually join the Flying Without Fear program, you get a nice little bonus of 2,000 Virgin Atlantic Flying Club miles. May you have the courage to use them.