Delayed flight? American Airlines offers meditation app 'Calm' to stressed-out passengers

  • American Airlines will start offering Calm, a mindfulness and relaxation app, on all domestic and international flights starting Oct. 8.
  • Calm created three exclusive sessions geared toward the specific stressors that can accompany air travel.
  • Calm competitor Headspace started working with Virgin Atlantic in 2011 and now offers its in-flight mindfulness exercises on 11 eleven airlines, including United Airlines and Delta Air Lines.
Source: American Airlines

Delayed flight? Stuck in the middle seat? American Airlines wants you to relax.

The world's biggest airline will start showing nature videos and offering passengers access to material through the Calm meditation app aboard most flights starting Oct. 8 to help keep travelers relaxed — even as they jostle for overhead bin space and the arm rest.

The airline will play nature videos during boarding and offer Calm's guided meditations and other content on the plane's seat back screens for passengers during flights.

Travelers may also have free access to the material through their personal electronic devices. Calm is an app that includes guided meditations, bedtime stories, relaxing music as well as photos and sounds from nature.

The Calm channel will include some of the features that come with its traditional app, including what it calls Sleep Stories, delivered in calm tones and accompanied by waterfall and other soothing sounds.

Calm also created three exclusive audio sessions geared toward the specific stresses that often occur during air travel.

One includes a breathing exercise. Another, called Relax and Release, encourages people to focus on the sensations in their hands or feet to distract them from their thoughts and relieve anxiety. Another exercise guides passengers through a meditation technique that focuses attention on relaxing specific parts of the body to help relieve stress and tension.

American is Calm's first airline partner. Its competitor, Headspace, started working with Virgin Atlantic in 2011 and now offers its in-flight mindfulness exercises on 11 airlines, including United Airlines and Delta Air Lines.