Is Air Travel Safer Than Car Travel?

When it comes to the question — is flying safer than driving? We’ve all have heard, “you’re more likely to die in a plane crash than in a car accident.” You may think car travel is safer than air travel. And no matter how many times you travel on the plane, there’s no escaping the rush of excitement you feel at take-off. But for some, flying triggers intense anxiety because they feel like they’ve fallen so far behind on the ground. Though flying is actually safer than driving, it probably seems unbelievable to you. How can it be safer to travel in the air than driving?

Is Air Travel Safer Than Car Travel?
Aircraft landing on the ground

However, strangely enough, flying is safer than driving. Look closer at how it works—this may make you feel better about those upcoming holiday flights you have.

Why Is Flying Safer?

Recent high-profile plane crashes in the news might have given you second thoughts about traveling by plane. But by far, flying is far safer than driving.

Recent statistics in 2020 showed that there were 40 accidents involving large commercial aircraft. Only five accidents were fatal, leading to 299 fatalities. However, more than 42,060 people died in vehicle crashes. This indicates that driving is more dangerous than using air travel.

Also, the International Air Transport Association reported that for every 5.4 million flights, there was just one major accident. Your chances of being in a plane crash are pretty low. Over time, flying is getting safer and safer. The regulations, training standards, and improved technology are all making flights safer.

For instance, pilots now must follow the rules to ensure they have adequate rest before every flight, which reduces the risk of a crash because of pilot fatigue. Also, there are always two pilots in the cockpit. Not to mention, today’s planes have more advanced engines and systems.

When it comes to airplane automation, we have an ever-improving system thanks to the efforts of aviation experts. More modern satellite technology enables flying to be both safer and more efficient.

Cars are also getting safer over time, of course. With all the new safety features, newer cars are far safer than older models. But regardless, you are much more likely to die in a car crash than in a plane crash. In other words, one fatal accident occurs per 16 million flights.

Moreover, there are far more private plane-related deaths than commercial flight-related deaths. With that said, flying in a private plane is far safer than driving.

But that doesn’t mean you should buy a private jet for your daily commute unless you’re a billionaire, then it’s a different story. But this fact will help you feel better about boarding a commercial plane.

Why Flying Is Terrifying Than Driving

Is Air Travel Safer Than Car Travel?
Airplane in the clouds

Now that you know the statistics, do you still feel nervous? Do you still think that flying is risky? But why is it? It’s obvious. It’s because you’re above the ground. It is pretty unpleasant to imagine falling from thousands of feet in the air.

Even worse, popular news make plane crashes sounds scarier than they really are. And let’s face the facts here; fatal car crashes happen every day, yet, they rarely appear in the news. Why is that? Because they are quite common.

Meanwhile, aircraft crashes are rare and can result in many casualties at once. Newspapers and media make it sound so dramatic. After all, plane crashes draw a lot of media attention because plane crashes bring more stories than car crashes.

There’s also the fact that most car crashes are minor. You can be in a car accident and walk away uninjured. This makes it easy to underestimate the actual dangers of driving. In reality, air travel is one of the safest ways to travel. And of course, cars are known to be one of the most dangerous ways to travel on the ground.

At the end of the day, people still need cars to drive around. So this piece of information shouldn’t scare you into driving, waiting for something terrible to happen to you. Just remember that cars are not safer to drive than they used to be. So there’s no need to panic. It’s quite safe to drive.


But if you’re still scared of air travel, you might make to keep the above statistics in mind. Flying is safer than driving a car. There’s no significant reason to fear flying. Avoiding only makes the air flight fear worse. If you want to conquer the fear of “air travel is more dangerous than car travel,” the best thing you can do for yourself is to hop on a plane. The main point is that flying is a means to an end—and that end is usually a happy one.

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