Why flying is about to get much worse

NERVOUS flyers don't enjoy boarding a plane at the best of times, but sadly, uncomfortable, delayed and cancelled flights will become more frequent.

Rising temperatures due to climate change are having a major impact on planes and their ability to fly.

Extreme heat is becoming a regular occurrence at some airports in the world, and has led to flight cancellations and disruptions.

Planes may struggle to take off and fly in extreme heat because the hotter the air becomes, the thinner it gets.

When that happens, it takes more power to get the lift that allows a plane to take off, which requires more fuel but makes the plane heavier and more difficult to fly.

In 2018, London City Airport recorded temperatures of 35.3C, and some passengers were removed from planes because they were too heavy to take off in the heat.

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According to USA Today, temperatures at Oregon's Portland International Airport reached an all-time high of 46.7C in June last year, with forecasters calling it a "once in a 1,000 years event".

Erica Fleishman, director of the Oregon State University Climate Change Research Institute, said: "Given the current level of greenhouse gas emissions, by late in the century that will be an every five to 10 years event."

To try to avoid flying during the hottest times of the day, airlines might be forced to schedule their flights early in the morning or late at night – a move which might not go down well with passengers who don't want to fly at inconvenient times.

Alternatively, planes could carry fewer passengers so it's easier for the plane to take off, but that could lead to competition to bag a seat and increased ticket prices.

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In addition, rising temperatures are likely to cause an increase in the amount of turbulence passengers experience on a flight.

Turbulence is, in essence, a change in the air that can rock a plane, and it is usually harmless.

Pilots try to avoid turbulence by flying in the lower troposphere – the layer of atmosphere closest to Earth.

But the climate crisis is causing changes in the Earth's atmosphere which is having an impact on that.

New research published in Science Advances discovered that as the planet heats up, the atmosphere closest to Earth has been rising.

That means that pilots will need to fly higher to avoid turbulence and it is likely that passengers will have a much bumpier ride in the future.

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A pilot has shared some tips to help passengers avoid feeling sick while they are flying through turbulence.

A former pilot has revealed the area around the UK where you will always get turbulence, and it's on a specific flight.

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