Getting in the air is fun though it comes with its own challenges. One of the few challenges is motion sickness. Although believed to be non-life threatening, it causes serious discomfort and could become a medical emergency in serious cases. This is especially true for nervous flyers and in most cases first-time flyers. The flying conditions in Malawi are generally good. We generally do not experience adverse weather. However, vigilance and obtaining weather information before every flight is a legal requirement. Here are a few tips on safe flying:
Avoiding Motion Sickness
What is motion sickness? In simple terms, motion sickness (also known as airsickness) is a phenomenon when your brain receives mixed messages on how your body is oriented. The first step in controlling and treating motion sickness should be to get a fresh supply of oxygen. You also need to ensure you have enough rest before your flight to reduce the chances of its occurrence in flight. At Eastrise, all our students have to declare the IMSAFE checklist before every flight. This checklist ensures that you have enough rest, have eaten adequately, and; you have not taken any medication that precludes you from flying. There are also medications that you can consider using before the flight as recommended by your doctor. Alcohol, smoking and stress can also aggravate motion sickness. The problem is worse in turbulent air conditions which are normally present from mid-morning to afternoons. If you have motion sickness problems, consider flying very early in the morning or evening when the weather is cooler.
Notice on flying with animals
Flying with animals, animal trophies or animal products including meat, hides, and others in our aircraft is strictly prohibited. Other prohibited items include lithium batteries, firearms, narcotics, alcohol, prescription drugs etc. We are legally obliged to check baggage carried on our aircraft. Please read our terms and conditions for more information.
Dangers of Aircraft Noise
The other challenge with flying especially in small piston engine aircraft is noise. The propeller’s action on the wind can produce noise that exceeds the coping ability of your ears. To avoid permanent ear damage, we recommend wearing a headset at all times when the engine is running and in flight. The other noise perhaps often overlooked is that of passengers during flight. To ensure the safe operation of the aircraft, it is a legal requirement that passengers avoid talking during the critical phases of flight. This includes take-off and climb as well as touch down and taxi. This does not prevent passengers from warning the pilot of a possible collision with another aircraft or obstacle. It also does not prevent passengers from asking questions pertaining to that flight’s safety.
You need to have your valid identification on you always when you fly. Even when you are not flying outside Malawi airspace, we recommend a having a valid passport on you. If not available, a valid national ID is recommended. A few banks in Malawi no longer recognize the driving licence as a valid identification. Please ensure you have acceptable identification to avoid disappointment. All persons boarding our aircraft are required to have valid identification.
Other Health Considerations
If you are heavily pregnant, have just had a surgery or have had dental fillings; flying is not right for you. This is equally true if you have donated blood within the previous 72 hours, as you may be prone to hypoxia – oxygen starvation at altitude. In the interest of safety, passengers weighing more than 90 kg are not permitted to fly in our 2-seater aircraft. Passengers may be weighed.
*We are continuously updating this page. If you have tips that you would like to share with us, or you would like to suggest an edit, feel free to contact us.