so, ive never been on a plane before . . . . .

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  • so, ive never been on a plane before . . . . .
  • Premier Icon martymac
    Subscriber

    as title, never been on a plane before, and im going to canada in 3 weeks.
    im 43.
    im pretty excited, never been abroad before, havent even seen all of the uk yet.
    we (mrsmac and i) are going to ottawa, for 10 days.
    plans include: take in an NHL game,
    try snowshoeing,
    try a snowmobile,
    skate on the worlds largest ice rink.(rideau canal)
    has anyone else been?
    can anyone recommend a nice restaurant so i can treat my wife one evening?
    weve been married 4 and a half years, but this is our honeymoon.
    and we may get pissed too, on an evening . . . .

    Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    my wife and two kids had never flown before we went to Barcelona last Easter. My son hated taking off, my daughter hated landing and my wife hated all of it. Such fun!

    no advice other than make sure you have something to read and something to listen to when at the airport and on the plane.

    djglover
    Member

    43 years on these shores, thats impressive. I once worked with a bloke who had never left the town he was born in (Colne Lanc)

    A mate’s mum was in her sixties I think, before she ever went abroad.

    Premier Icon portlyone
    Subscriber

    Agree with taking a book(s). Your ears will pop as you change pressures, keep swallowing to help them.

    I always found flying fun, specially if you can see out the windows. I flew back in November and could see fireworks* as I landed.

    *Nope, not a voyeur 😉

    Premier Icon martymac
    Subscriber

    ive been up and down the country (bus driver)but never had the real desire to go abroad until recently. (or, tbh the money either)
    however, i now feel i want to go and see places while im still young enough to enjoy them.
    got an ipod for the plane journey, and its 2 flights, so if i really dont enjoy the 1st bit down to heathrow i can have a wee drink and i will probly fall asleep on the 7h 45m bit to ottawa.

    16stonepig
    Member

    I could see how a takeoff might be a bit unsettling for someone who’s never been on a plane before. I love that bit though – try and enjoy it 🙂

    My first ever flight (aged 18) was Manchester to JFK.

    It was horrible. I was on board a really old and scruffy tri-star run by the now defunct American Trans Air. And I got to sit next to the most nervous / crying person in the world. It was a long 8 hours I can tell you!

    I still don’t like flying. I need a bottle of wine to take the edge off it. I often carry a drowsiness causing anti-histamine in case I get in a sweaty / panicky state. I’d recommend something to listen to just to drown out the engine noise and other mechanical noises.

    iDave
    Member

    what’s the worst that could happen…

    Premier Icon martymac
    Subscriber

    lol @idave.
    well, i can get my head right down between my knees no problem . . . .

    Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    what’s the worst that could happen…

    this bloke in the next seat 😉

    take ear plugs for all the family – to drownout the noise of the plane if not to drown out the noise of the crying babies

    Save drinking until you land!!

    Enjoy and have a good hols.

    Premier Icon cheshirecat
    Subscriber

    I work for a company with a presence in Ottawa – been about 20 times. It’s a really manageable city on foot if you’re staying in the centre.

    Byward Market is the place to go for restaurants – something ridiculous like >100 in a small area, so lots of choice. Went here when I was last in Ottawa in August, and if you like a small plates type of restaurant, this could be ideal.
    Small Plates Restaurant

    The Rideau Canal skating is great – stop for hot chocolate and beavertails (pastry, not real beavers) at the booths on the ice. Hopefully it will be open by then.

    Let me know if you need anything else – e-mail in profile.

    Paul

    tails
    Member

    I also hate flying and get close to panic attacks especially take off and landing. Take books and magazines, ipods/ipads etc. As your going international get pissed!

    nothing really to worry about they are designed to be in the air, my mums friend who works for airbus has some impressive stats about their planes!

    b r
    Member

    Just remember that when they give the advice of what you can and can’t carry in hand luggage, it’s to be obeyed. Also get to the airport early.

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    I hate flying. To be honest it scares the shit out of me. Turbulence is the worst bit for me. It makes me literally sweat and shake with terror.

    That said, I’ve flown so much that I’m used to it. I prepare myself. I stay totally sober. I have sweets to suck for takeoff and landing and I prefer to be able to see out of the window, as I have no fear of heights and I like to see where I am (like reading a map) and where I’m going. Banking and turning is no bother at all oddly. It has to be said I felt a lot better when I found out what these planes are capable of: Basically passenger airliners spend their entire time ticking over gently.

    I want to go to places. So I have to put up with it! 🙂

    LHS
    Member

    Remember to pedal hard for take-off and cover the brakes during landing just in case.

    Premier Icon Alphabet
    Subscriber

    Lift your feet off the floor during take off and landing to reduce the vibrations and unplesentness. Works for nervous flyers that I know.

    Premier Icon GrahamS
    Subscriber

    take in an NHL game

    Dull, IMHO.

    try a snowmobile,

    Less dull 😉

    Premier Icon cheese@4p
    Subscriber

    Have a great time you old romantic!

    Duggan
    Member

    I like flying though the novelty has worn off slightly now. It is for the most part quite boring and pretty pedestrian but I always like getting a window seat and find that I am craning my neck to look out more than the 5 and 6 year olds sat near me.

    Canada is quite a long one of course so just make sure you’ve got plenty to occupy yourself. Sounds like it’ll be ace fun though, would love to go over sometime.

    Premier Icon martymac
    Subscriber

    yeah, fancy the snowmobile thing quite a bit tbh,
    both of us used to play ice hockey, so its not dull for us, but i see where your coming from if its not your thing.
    when i say im excited, i actually mean im super excited!!!!
    @cheshirecat, thanks for the offer of help, we are staying downtown, 1 block from the canal, so thats just the type of thing we are looking for.

    trail_rat
    Member

    i find the more i do it the more i get comfortable with it i started my with my first flight as going to new zealand as part of a prize – didnt even have a passport at the time

    im not scared or nervous at thought of flying – what gets me is the shear uncomfortableness of it all and crap food giving me a dodgy stomach – im a tall chap and in cattle class it just isnt comfy.

    over the last 5 years or so ive taken about 40 odd flights mostly for work and im now able to fall asleep quite comfortably on them as ive worked out what to take – where to put stuff to access it easy and what i can eat and drink without feeling sick.

    choppers still scare the shit out of me and i use them quite a bit recently !

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    For a number of years, I’d flown in planes but never landed in one.

    Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    very sensible cougar – it’s returning to earth that’s fraught with problems.

    hels
    Member

    My advice for newbie flyers would be: don’t be tempted to take loads of hand luggage to save on hold luggage, it’s a real PITA. Keep it minimal. The only stuff I take that I won’t need on a plane is spare contact lenses and pants in case my luggage gets lost.

    Flying long distance is dull, dull, dull. A window seat helps, especially if it’s a nice day when you pass Greenland
    If you haven’t booked/been allocated seats yet, get on seatguru and see what you can find

    Premier Icon mrhoppy
    Subscriber

    It’s fine as long as the treadmill is working on takeoff.

    Flying long distance is dull, dull, dull. A window seat helps, especially if it’s a nice day when you pass Greenland
    If you haven’t booked/been allocated seats yet, get on seatguru and see what you can find

    +1 for SeatGuru. Indispensable.

    Also, a flat bed really helps on long haul flights! 😉

    mogrim
    Member

    Just remember that when they give the advice of what you can and can’t carry in hand luggage, it’s to be obeyed. Also get to the airport early.

    +1 on this – don’t even think about making a joke about bombs or something stupid!

    And +1000 on the good book / tablet, once you’re up in the air flying is about as exciting as a long distance bus ride. But with less to look at!

    Premier Icon Nick
    Subscriber

    Yeah flying, especially over 4 hours is tedious.

    Noise cancelling headphones are great, they really do work well at removing the insessant background roar.

    Don’t drink alcohol, or if you do, alternate with the same amount of water.

    Get a really good nights sleep before (don’t stay up all night drinking then get on a plane back from New York, easily the worst 7 hours of my life)

    SkillWill
    Member

    Used to do border security for Canada working for their government so spent a lot of time in Ottawa.

    Do a tour of their parliament – http://www.parl.gc.ca/Default.aspx?Language=E (well worth it)

    The Canadian Museum of Civilization is very interesting – http://www.civilization.ca/home – it’s just across the bridge. Learn how the country came into being.

    As above Byward market is fantastic for restaurants there are loads. I like “The Keg” which is a really nice steak house (amazing steak). I always used to eat there before flying home. (There is also a strip bar and a Hooters in Ottawa as well – I went to the strip bar and the govt agency picked up the tab which technically means Canadian taxpayers paid for me to look at nudey ladies)

    SkillWill
    Member

    I used to stay in The Westin near parliament which is an ace hotel.

    This was my crappy attempt at tilt-shift from the room window.

    hels
    Member

    No way window seat for long flight – tourists !

    Anything more that a couple of hours and aisle seat is key, you can get up and walk about as much as you want without annoying people, and have way more leg room, not that I need it mind.

    Drink loads of water and the aisle seat becomes even more important.

    If you really want to see the view buy a book called Earth From Space. You only get to see it at landing and take off anyway after that you will ba above the clouds.

    Actually this reminds me of an unresolvable argument with old bf, he always wanted window and I like aisle. Fine, in the end we just sat separately. Says it all really…

    Noise cancelling headphones are great, they really do work well at removing the insessant background roar.

    Don’t drink alcohol, or if you do, alternate with the same amount of water.

    ^^This^^. In fact, lots of this.

    However, noise cancellers are an expensive way of doing it. Seeing as the OP will have only flowon once in 3,245 years or something, I don’t think that’s the best approach. Earplugs are great, as are decent in-ear noise isolating headphones.

    hels
    Member

    I nearly missed a plane in San Francisco staying up all might clubbing the night before in Vancouver. Had a 6 hour lay-over at SF on the way back to NZ. Fell asleep on some seats. That was some weird-arse jet lag by the time I got back.

    Premier Icon Flaperon
    Subscriber

    It’s absolutely normal for planes to make strange noises / rattle / vibrate etc.

    16stonepig
    Member

    You’re all doing it wrong. Window seat is required so you have somewhere to rest your mid-flight-hungover head and get the toilet-seat-refreshment effect. Aisle seat unnecessary as you will just pee yourself due to the volume of free wine and beer you have snaffled from the trolley.
    Also, you need the moonlight to sparkle in your eyes as you charm the stewardess who has never heard any of the lines before.

    Hate flying too.

    Just sleep the journey off unless you are sitting next to a yoga instructor who invites you for a shower. God she was hot.

    Anyway just sleep the trip off.

    An old lady told me not to worry, its the taking off and landing we should be afraid off- boy did I fart.

    Premier Icon cheshirecat
    Subscriber

    @SkillWill – Hooters now closed (or at least the one opposite the Marriott Courtyard is) – now a Dennys.

    Ottawa is a great cycling city – they close some of the roads on Sunday mornings – the one by the canal, and some over the river in the Gatineau Park. Pity it’ll be too cold when the OP goes.

    Can recommend places to rent bikes as well ($3500 full carbon road bike for $60 per 24 hours). Some reasonable MTB in the Gatineau Park as well, though had a bit of a moment last time we went when we saw a black bear on the trail we were just about to use.

    We flew Gatwick to Vancouver with a touchdown in Edmonton. We prebooked seats in the tail as they were in pairs with window and aisle, the aisle was slightly wider here which meant you could stretch a leg out, but the downside was there was a constant roar from the engines, which you didn’t get further forwards. It was a 12hr flight with an economy/short haul seating plan (Canadian Affair) and further forwards in the main part it was extremely cramped, felt relieved to be near the back where it was narrower and they couldn’t cram so many seats in. The other downside, was my ears don’t equalise very well, I discovered (both ways) that the take off was fine, first landing a bit of discomfort, then the second take off pretty uncomfortable, and the final landing bloody painful, 80% deaf on landing and it took 24hrs for the earache to go and hearing to come back. Was exactly the same coming back.

    hels – Member

    No way window seat for long flight – tourists !
    totally tourist, that’s why window seat. On my way to the US, clear day crossing Greenland – frankly, worth gambling on a clear day to get that view. same again over mainland US, but wrong side of the plane to see Mt Rushmore.
    Came back at night – saw northern lights. Awesome.
    So, if night flight, sit on the north side of the aircraft (right on way out, left on way back)

    SkillWill
    Member

    @SkillWill – Hooters now closed (or at least the one opposite the Marriott Courtyard is) – now a Dennys.

    Noooooo! Shame…

    Premier Icon Rusty Spanner
    Subscriber

    Take one of big religious books, Bible, Koran etc.
    Read it aloud, then rip out each page after you’ve finished it whilst exclaming ‘Won’t need that anymore!’.

    Always inform the stranger next to you that you love flying, but it gives you terrible wind.

    If you don’t like the food, ask to see the chef. They will usually be able to rustle you up a tasty alternative.

    A serious one: Get a dental checkup before you fly.

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