Brussels Airlines is pairing up with behavioural therapists from The Human Link to relaunch their joint “Fear of Flying” course for the first time in four years.

“Remarkably”, the carrier said, participants can for the first time be counselled using virtual reality (VR).

“Almost logically, there are again more requests for help from people with a fear of flying,” said Marieke Impens of The Human Link.

“Due to the Covid pandemic, we put the course ‘on hold’ for a while, but continued tweaking our approach. This has given us even more insight into how fear works and we are convinced that we can now counsel people with fear of flying even better,” Impens said,

More than eight in 10 participants are able to travel by plane carefree after completing the course, according to a Brussels Airways statement.

“First, participants come to Brussels Airlines in Zaventem for a full day. In the morning, a pilot first immerses you in the world of aviation – how does a plane stay in the air, what exactly is turbulence, etc,” said Luc Michiels, a trainer and pilot with the carrier.

“The other half-day is spent on concrete exercises with therapists to deal in a different way with the feelings passengers have when they are anxious,” he said.