Welcome to my guide on how to survive comfortably on a long haul flight.
Having travelled on some especially long journeys; we are talking on average 30 hours, I have been able to perfect my flying experience so that it is not only relaxing but enjoyable as well. By following this guide you will be refreshed, calm and ready to start your new day upon arrival at your destination.
Tip 1: I cannot express this enough, drinking oodles of water is my number one priority when I am flying. Given that we are recommended to consume 8 glasses of water a day, this can be very difficult when on a plane, as you are restricted to having beverages based on the times that the refreshment trolley is scheduled to do its rounds. I always carry an empty water bottle with me, this way you can make your way through security without having to throw away any water you may have already bought in departures and then can proceed to fill this up at the refreshment stations whilst on board your flight. I have experienced stop overs where they make you go through security again whilst in transit between two destinations, by carrying my empty water bottle I am still able to continue hydrating without having to claim any liquids over 100ml.
Tip 2: The first thing I do when I board a flight after take off is change into more relaxed clothing. This makes my journey that much more comfortable and I am able to keep my stylish clothes for arrival at the new destination. It is also important to note that at night time the air conditioning means that it can get very chilly so I always bring warm socks and a sweater.
Tip 3: Always, always bring a spare change of underwear and a new outfit in case you are unexpectedly delayed or your luggage goes missing. I would always tailor this to the region that you are going to, bring a bikini or board shorts if you are going to a hot country, nothing worse than being in the scorching sunshine and having nothing to wear. Wear your ski jacket if you are going to the snow, you can always take it off on the plane but will be prepared for the weather on the other side, especially if you are going to the opposite hemisphere.
Tip 4: Carry a chapstick and moisturiser, this will keep your skin and lips hydrated throughout the duration of your trip. The air conditioning on planes is very powerful and dry, cracked lips and flaky skin is easily avoided by carrying travel miniatures of these products.
Tip 5: Set your clock to the time zone that you are visiting and begin to try and adjust to this time so that you are sleeping when needed. Having spent many hours on the flight already, this way once you arrive you will be rested and more likely to avoid jet lag, thus enabling you to make the most out of the holiday that awaits you.
Tip 6: Bring Aspirin tablets, these are perfect for taking to help avoid DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis). As Aspirin is a blood thinner it prevents blood clots from forming in your veins when sitting in a sedentary position for long periods of time. Taking walks and performing leg exercises will also further prevent this from becoming a problem.
Tip 7: Organise your carry on bag so that everything you need to keep you entertained- iPads, books, MP3 player are easily reachable. Once you find that you want something from your bag in the overhead locker it will be much easier to obtain than rooting around whilst in everyone’s way in the corridor.
Tip 8: When I flew to New Zealand from the UK a few years ago, I realised that in the middle of the night some people were eating snacks, however there was no refreshment trolley in sight. Upon investigation I concluded that snacks were available at the food stations but were not openly advertised to customers. These were freely available and if you are hungry between meals you should grab these so you can snack when you please.
Tip 9: Avoid window seats, unless you are travelling as a party of three. Trying to wake someone up in the middle of the night because you need to use the washroom is near impossible. If you want to take photographs of the views you can do this at the emergency exit areas and use the opportunity to do some stretches at the same time.
So there we have it, my top tips on ensuring any long haul flight will leave you energized, happy and rested. For more travel tips and stories visit our Facebook page, follow us on twitter and sign up to follow our blog.
Yours, Ever The Wanderer