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The “What If” of Traveling: In Case of an Emergency

“I’m scared of flying” my friend once told me. I immediately judge her and thought “how could she be afraid of flying? Is the safest method of transportation and accidents are rare.” 
Me to my friend:You are crazy! There’s nothing to be scared of. Planes basically flight themselves nowadays.” | My friend: I’m scared to death and this is the reason why I can’t travel.” 


But now that I am older and think about all the things that can go wrong on a flight got me thinking and thought I would be fun to write down my thoughts.
The “what if the plane starts to lose pressure?”: How scary. I’ve always thought about the possibility of experiencing this. I can’t imagine what would I do if the yellow air masks drop from the airplane’s ceiling. 


The “what if we need to evacuate the plane?”: Every time I board a plane I made sure which is my nearest emergency exit. I don’t know why I do this, but I guess it can’t hurt. 
Also, I’ve thought about the best way to successfully evacuate the plane. After watching the movie “Sully”, the captain that saved the entire crew by landing on the Hudson River in New York after multiple birds strike the plane and both engines were completely lost. I always think “What if we land on water?” If so, there’s three option: I jump into the water and swim to the nearest airplane wing (like they did in the movie), put on my lifeguard and board the yellow boat or I put my lifeguard and take my seat (which also serves as a floating device) and float in the water. 


The “What if there’s an emergency and I’m sitting in an exit seat?”: Mmm… Am I a good candidate to help all these passengers evacuate the plane? What if I’m not strong enough to open the emergency exit door? 


The “What if there’s an emergency and I’m traveling with my dog?”: “Leave everything behind” is what every safety video tell you to do, but does that include my dog? I would never leave my dog behind even if the airline crew says otherwise. If this ever happens to me I would make sure I take my dog out from the pet-carrier and attach her leash to my clothes cause “what if I need to jump off the plane and my dog slips off my arms?”

I’ve also thought about what should I quickly take with me in case I need to leave everything behind. This includes my passport (or any sort of ID), at least one credit card, my phone and sweater and/or coat. “What if it’s cold? Or “what if I lose all my documents and I have no ID or money?” Of course, I’ll put these these things in my pocket.


Is crazy to think about all the things that can happen on a flight in case of an emergency, but better to be somewhat prepared and think about all these possibilities than being sorry later. 


Not too long ago my flight was delayed for more than 40 minutes because of mechanical issues. The engineers took their time to fix the plane and made sure everything was OK. The passengers were getting frustrated by the fact that we were still in the gate waiting. I overheard a lady asking one of the members of the crew if she had any updates and she responded: “There’s no updates, but we’ll let you know as soon as we hear some news” and the lady said: “Well better be cautious than sorry later.” 

This got me thinking…and it's SO TRUE! Since that moment I decided that I am never going to complain or get angry to the airline for delays due to mechanical reasons. The airline and the crew just wants to take us safely to our destination. 


Until next trip, 

About The Author


The art of saying "Yes!" can take you far away. Many people pass on opportunities for many reasons, one of them being fear. Through my life I've encounter many people that forget to live the present for something that might not even happen in the future. If you are constantly waiting for the right time to finally do something, like fulfill your life dream, you are going to spend most of your life waiting.

My name is Mariella and I created this blog as a source of inspiration for others to believe they can live the life they always pictured. The secret? Believe you can and take action. The world awaits!


  1. Followingtherivera says

    I agree with you completely about not complaining. It’s normal for us to get frustrated when the flight is delayed/cancelled, but as long as it’s for a very good reason, i.e. bad weather, technical, then I keep quiet and take another beer! Don’t like to think about the what ifs, only about when I land safely 🙂

  2. I think it’s a good idea to play out a few scenarios in our heads before we travel. Like you said, it’s good to be prepared and have a plan worked out. As someone who has had their passport stolen, there’s nothing worse than that sinking feeling as you fully realize that the literal worst has happened. I was fortunate to get a new one rushed in 3 days, but if I had planned ahead and actually given it some thought, I wouldn’t have been nearly as freaked out as I ended up being.

  3. I am a pretty nervous flier, but I get through it! One thing that helped me was to follow the blog of an airline pilot for American Airlines. The things he says really helped to calm me. I know flying is the safest way to travel; I’m just terrified of falling to the ground which is a pretty irrational fear. I think it’s great to take the precautions seriously, as you suggest, so we have a plan in case of emergency.

  4. that’s so true. it’s definitely better to be safe than sorry and any travel requires patience.

  5. Love this! My sister in law is terrified of flying and traveling in general. There really are so many what-if situations. I’m with you, the small risks make me say you’re crazy. But there really are so many small things that could derail a trip!

  6. Mmhh I never think of all these things… It would be like thinking what if I get in a car accident every time I seat in my car. But then I’m not afraid of flying. Only every time I board on a plane I check where the nearest emergency exit is, as I read once that the first seconds after an emergency can save your life. So better not to waste them to search for the exit 😉

  7. I can relate to the ” What If” situation as I suffered from this tension after watching ” Lost” series. It scared me hell out of me every time I board a flight. But with time it became normal as I travel a lot. It’s always good to be prepared than sorry. And yes, one should not complaining if there is any technical issues with the aircraft.

  8. You have chosen a great topic to write about and it reminds me of a story I read recently. It’s a real life incident of a plane crash where the reason of the plane crash was a tiny crocodile that someone had smuggled into the cabin. Everyone (including the air hostesses) rushed to the front of the plane and that’s why it straight nose dived. Everyone died except for one passenger (who told the story) and the croc baby coz they were at the back of the plane. Imagine “what if” they applied their mind and stayed in their seats.

  9. Amanda Tran says

    I am definitely not a “what if” person because I think once you go down that rabbit hole, there’s never really an end and you can apply to it everything in life. You could play out millions of scenarios but in the end, I just think that if it came to it in an emergency, all of your rational thinking would go out the window and the best thing to do is stay calm and follow instructions. The top tip here though is to know where the emergency doors are – although to be honest, I don’t remember which is closer anyway even if o make an effort to point it out. I suppose this is helpful for people who are super anxious about flying though.

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