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Eight Ways To Prevent Helicopter Sickness

Many people experience motion sickness when they go up in a helicopter.

It’s a common disturbance of the inner ear as a result of a repeated motion – like the bopping around of the helicopter. Anybody can develop motion sickness, especially from the turbulence of the flight.

Symptoms of Motion Sickness

The most common symptoms of motion sickness include:

  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Sweating
  • Dizziness
  • Generally feeling unwell

The symptoms typically begin in the inner ear because of changes to your sense of equilibrium and balance.

The good news is that there are things you can do to prevent helicopter sickness and ensure you have a far more pleasant experience with helicopter charters.

8 Ways to Prevent Helicopter Sickness

While it is likely impossible to prevent all kinds of motion sickness, the below 8 tips can help you lessen or even prevent the severity of helicopter sickness, so you can finally take to the skies and see a city from an entirely different vantage point.

Watch what you eat

Watch what you eat and drink, especially in terms of alcohol, both before and during your helicopter trip. Avoid foods, liquids and excessive alcohol that don’t agree with you or that would usually make you feel overly full. Spicy, heave and fat-rich foods can worsen helicopter sickness in many people.

Avoid strong smells

Avoiding strong food odors can also help prevent nausea.


If you can, pick a seat where you’ll experience the least possible motion. For example, on an airplane, sitting in the middle or over the wing tends to be the calmest spots whereas, on a ship, those in lower level cabins and towards the center of the vessel tend to experience less motion sickness. Ask the pilot for a recommendation. Also, make sure you sit facing backward from the direction of travel and avoid reading while in the helicopter. Sometimes, it can also help to keep your gaze fixed on a certain point or even on the horizon.

Take medication

Over-the-counter motion sickness medication can be highly effective in preventing motion sickness on short trips like a helicopter ride. Your doctor may even prescribe medications if you suffer from severe helicopter sickness.


Whether it’s a ginger cookie or candy, many people swear by ginger in one form or another before a flight.

Deep breaths

Breathing in through the nose and out through the mouth can help calm your muscles and help you relax, while also holding off on the throwing up.

Keep your chin up

Keeping your head straight and up is a great way to prevent helicopter sickness. Bending down can make things so much worse, so keep your head up and enjoy the view!

Tend to your sinuses

When the pressure in your ears gets too much, irrigate your sinuses. It’s a great thing to do before taking a helicopter flight to avoid dizziness, vertigo, and general illness.

Use these 8 tips to prevent helicopter sickness and really enjoy your next scenic flight.

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