Virgin Atlantic is offering a full refund on flights booked today if it can't cure a passenger's fear of flying

  • Virgin Atlantic is offering a free place on its "Flying Without Fear" course for anyone who books a flight on January 9.
  • If the course fails to cure a passenger's phobia of flying, it will even offer a full refund on the flight.


Virgin Atlantic — one of the biggest airlines in the UK — is offering a full refund on flights booked today if it can't cure a passenger's fear of flying.

As part of the airline's "Screw it, let's do it" campaign, if you book a Virgin Atlantic flight on Tuesday, January 9, 2018, you'll then be able to book into the airline's £267 "Flying Without Fear" course completely free — and if it doesn't cure your phobia before you take off, the full cost of the flight will be refunded.

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According to the airline, 3.8 million Brits decide not to travel overseas on holiday every year due to a phobia of flying.

The offer — in conjunction with Dr. Cliff Arnall, the founder of Blue Monday — is an effort to "encourage people to reject the idea of January blues and be more adventurous."

"We're offering aviophobes the chance to stop their phobia holding them back," the company wrote on its website.

The flight — which can be booked by any UK resident over 18 traveling to any Virgin Atlantic destination — must take place between March 4 and December 31, 2018, in order to be eligible.

Once you have your eticket, you simply need to email it to screwit@fly.virgin.com to be eligible for a free place on the one day course — one of which will take place at Leeds Bradford airport on February 4 for 10 people, with another on offer at London Gatwick for 40 people on March 4.

The "Flying Without Fear" program, which began in November 1997, runs courses more than 20 times a year, claims to "free 3,000 people a year" from their fears, and is "packed full of information, techniques, and strategies" to "help you to learn new ways to think about flying."

However, the airline states: "If you can provide sufficient evidence that your fear of flying is not cured, we will provide a full refund for the flight purchased. This will be determined by our professionals who administer the Flying Without Fear programme."

Shai Weiss, Chief Commercial Officer at Virgin Atlantic, said in a press release: "We want everyone to be able to say 'screw it, let's do it' and try something different, fly somewhere new. Hopefully, by guaranteeing to cure people of one of the main things holding them back, we can inspire Britain to choose something more positive than the clichéd Blue January nonsense. Nothing should hold anyone back from seizing the day in 2018."

If it sounds like a pretty good gamble, you'd better be quick — only 50 free places on the course are available, and the contest closes at 11.59 p.m. tonight.

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