9 Tips for Surviving a Long Flight

Long flights can wreak havoc on your system, and spending endless hours inside a metal tube with limited space, bad food, and crying babies isn't exactly a recipe for your best self. But don't worry, with just a few tips and tricks you'll be sure to minimize travel headaches and maximize your chances of not walking off the plane looking and feeling a total mess.

1. Stay Hydrated

  • Airplane dehydration will make you feel bad and also do a number on your skin and eyes. I suggest a good facial moisturizer, under eye cream, lip balm, and a reusable water bottle. Days before your flight: Increase your daily water intake and limit sodas and alcohol. During your flight make sure to drink plenty of water and don’t hesitate to ask the flight attendant to fill up your water bottle when you get low. As tempting as it might be to take advantage of free alcohol on intercontinental flights, show some self control as an in-flight alcoholic drink is much more potent than on land.

2. Wear Loose Fitting Clothing

  • It's still possible to presentable and comfortable at the same time. I suggest stretchy bottoms and a comfy top with an over-sized sweater or cardigan as an alternative to a blanket. Slip on shoes are good for airport security and in-flight comfort. You will also want to have a pair of warm socks. I like to change out of my day clothes a few hours into something more comfortable to aid with sleep, then change again before descending to look fresh upon arrival.

3. BYOS (Bring Your Own Snacks)

  • You will get hungry on long flights and, although the airline company may feed you, having a healthy snack on hand will curb hunger and give you something to do. Whatever you choose, make sure it's healthy and portable. At booking, consider the vegetarian meal options since they tend to be fresher than the other options and and lower in calories. 

4. BYOE (Bring Your Own Entertainment)

  • Sometimes airlines promise things and don’t always deliver; so you may be expecting free Wi-fi and in-flight entertainment, and get nothing more than a seat back to stare at. Load your laptop/tablet with plenty of music/movies, bring a coloring book, download some books or buy a magazine or two at the airport to help pass the time.

5. Refresh and Stay Fresh!

  • Do yourself a favor (those around you) by having travel sized to products to make you feel brand new after a long haul. I suggest deodorant, mouthwash, toothbrush and toothpaste, facial wipes, lotion, and lip balm or whatever you need to feel less...pungent. 

6. Get Sleep

  • Getting rest on airplanes can be challenging. Come prepared with your own pillow, blanket, eye-mask, ear plugs, socks, night-time outfit, and perhaps a sleeping aid. A few days before your flight, I suggest taking a mental note of the time difference in your destination country and adjust your sleep as much as you can. Before your flight, set all your clocks to the local time in your destination and rest as if you were already there. Preparing ahead of time for the time-change will combat jet lag!

7. Select the Right Seat at Booking

  • Upon booking your flight, consider your comfort and choose the best seat for your needs. Upgrading your seat for a small price and more leg room may be worth it. Upon boarding the plane, scan for any empty rows or seats which would better suit your comfort and after take-off, ask a flight attendant if you can relocate. As a general rule, never reserve a seat in the first two rows of each seating section as those are where they usually place traveling families. 

8. Stay Charged

  • Be sure to charge up all devices the evening before you travel. If you forget, the airport will usually offer public charging ports and stations (but they're usually taken). Most international flights have in-flight charging ports at your seat but be sure to double check before take-off.

9. Pack Smart

  • As you know, packing smart is key when traveling long distances. Each bag should be utilized to it’s fullest potential depending on the type of travel and destination. A good carry-on bag should have plenty of space, zippers, pockets, and compartments for organization. Consider using packing cubes to step your organization game up to another level.