Millions of Brits have never set foot on foreign soil – because they are scared of flying, a study revealed yesterday.
Researchers found one in twenty adults has never left the UK because they are petrified of getting on a plane.
Incredibly, a further one in ten Brits have travelled to Europe by ferry, the Eurostar or the Eurotunnel rather than board a holiday jet.
Foreign holidays are not the only things fearful flyers miss out on, the poll by Premier Inn also found millions have missed weddings, stag parties and even funerals due to their phobia.
One in six have failed to turn up at an airport to catch pre-booked flights because their fear is so strong.
A spokesman for Premier Inn said: ”We conducted this research not knowing the huge numbers of people that had fears of flying.
”The results show that it’s a common phobia and many people live their life around their fear of flying.
”It is a shame to hear that so many Brit’s are missing out on big family events like weddings, birthdays and funerals because you won’t fly and we are surprised to find out how many people lose a night’s sleep because they are scared to board a plane.
”Although many people we polled refused to fly at all, a large percentage will get on a plane even though they are terrified – which is very commendable.”
The study also found of those who are frightened of flying but still fly – 23 per cent drink alcohol to calm their nerves before a flight.
And more than a quarter knock back a tipple on board to take the edge off their fear.
A third seeks solace in herbal remedies or something the doctor has given them and one in ten even confess to doing ‘something embarrassing’ because they were so frightened.
Crying was the most likely, followed by screaming and even grabbing a stranger’s hand.
In fact one quarter said other passengers had become annoyed with them for being so frightened amid take-off.
Half of nervous flyers said they would consider hypnosis and 37 per cent said their fear impacts on their family.
Not surprisingly a third were worried they would pass their paranoia on to their children.
The study found more than a third of frightened flyers said the crew could do more to dispel their fears by explaining things like turbulence in more detail.
And an anxious 18 per cent said they would like a member of the cabin crew to sit with them during take-off and landing.
Premier Inn carried out the study to launch their group hypnosis sessions to combat flying phobia, of which more information is available by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.