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Program takes on fearful flying

November 6, 2009 |  2:12 pm

Can this man cure your fear of flying Can an application on an electronic hand-held gadget really change your life? Whoopi Goldberg says it can.

The Academy Award-winning actress and co-host of ABC’s “The View” claimed her fear of flying kept her off airplanes until she tried an application developed for Virgin Atlantic Airways for the iPod and the iPhone called Flying Without Fear.

“The program works, I was a skeptic,” she said in a statement.

The Flying Without Fear “app” costs $4.99 and uploads onto iPod and iPhone devices. The program begins with an introduction from Sir Richard Branson, Virgin Atlantic’s president, and includes a video-based explanation of a flight, frequently asked questions, relaxation exercises and fear therapy, plus a “fear attack” button with breathing exercises for emergencies.

There may be one snag to this program: Most airlines make passengers put away all electronic devices during takeoff and landing. If you feel a panic attack coming on during takeoff, you’re going to have to wait until the plane reaches cruising altitude before you can switch on your iPhone to begin your breathing exercises.

But if Whoopi can do it, so can you.

--Hugo Martin

Photo: Richard Branson. Credit: Getty Images