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Six things you never knew about flying

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2 min read

While getting on an airplane is a pretty straightforward exercise, there are most likely a couple of things that you’ve always wondered about.

Have you ever given any thought about why food may taste differently up in the air? (Spoiler alert: it is not because airplane food is simply plain bad). Or have you ever wondered where the safest place is on an airplane?

Here are some things you may not have known about flying.

Food tasting a bit off?

Did you know that a third of your taste buds simply don’t work during flights? Research has shown that taste buds are numbed out at higher altitudes. Strangely, this also has an effect on enhancing the savoury flavours in tomato juice. This could just be the reason why a lot of people get a sudden craving for a Bloody Mary when flying…

Some more info on food

While it is not a written rule, airlines often require pilots and co-pilots to eat different meals in the unlikely event that one meal may be a bit off.

Getting stuck in the bathroom

If you are a tad claustrophobic, you might have experienced the fear of being locked in an airplane’s bathroom. The good news is that it is impossible to lock yourself in the bathroom.
Just before take-off and landing you will notice that flight attendants flip a switch on the bathroom door in order for the door to not shoot open. So, don’t worry, there will always be help at hand in a sticky situation.

Minimum Equipment List

Did you know that there is actually quite a long list of things that can either be missing or broken on an aircraft, yet it is still allowed to fly?

Referred to as the Minimum Equipment List, it should not put you off flying as there are many regulations and laws ensuring you are safe up in the air at all times.

It’s just a little bit of lightning

Forget what you’ve seen in the movies. While thunder and lightning can be frightening, it is highly unlikely that the aircraft you are flying in will be in any danger.

It is not uncommon for airplanes to get struck by lightning. In fact, sometimes the plane itself triggers the lightning by flying through charged clouds which results in static discharge off the aircraft. The average commercial airliner gets hit by lightning a little more than once a year, however, the good news is, planes are made to withstand it.

Stay hydrated

There is no denying that the air within an aeroplane leaves your throat and nose as dry as the desert, so you should also ensure that you keep yourself well hydrated every time you fly.

According to research, you lose up to 237 millilitres of water for every hour you are up in the air. Now, if you do the math, this adds up to roughly a two-litre bottle during a 10-hour long-haul flight.

Jeanette Briedenhann
Jeanette Phillips joined the team in 2016. She developed a passion and love for all things-travel related in her role as travel journalist, a position she held for over seven years. A brief exodus into the corporate marketing sphere proved that there is no better industry than the travel industry. Research and writing are two of Jeanette’s greatest passions, but she is always open to new challenges and different ways of doing things.

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