Long- haul flights are often the dreaded part of travelling to your exciting destination. They don’t have to be unbearable though. I got through a 14.5 hour flight from Sydney to Abu Dhabi with ease with these tips. It was the longest flight I have ever been on and it wasn’t half as bad as I thought it would be, so try not to worry.
1. Sleeping mask
I personally love sleeping masks and wouldn’t be able to sleep on a plane without one. Try to get used to one before you fly to help you to be comfortable on the flight.
2. Sleeping aid/ tablets
I got mild sleeping tablets from a pharmacy over the counter in Australia and I slept for 8 hours straight which was amazing and made the flight so much more bearable. If you’re after something natural, melatonin can be a great supplement to take to get you sleepy. Sleeping tablets can have side effects such as drowsiness, muscle fatigue, nausea and others so always consult your doctor or pharmacist.
3. Ear plugs
Ear plugs are essential for sleeping on a flight. You never know who you’re going to be sitting beside or if there’ll be a crying baby in your cabin so ear plugs are a must.
4. Flight socks
Long-haul flights can be dangerous for your body. Due to sitting down in one position for so long without the freedom to change position, you can develop blood clots, swelling or even deep vein thrombosis which is extremely dangerous. Also, if you have had any injuries to your legs, feet or ankles, you are more prone to in-flight swelling of the site of injury. I had a serious injury to my ankle about 5 years ago and it swelled up enormously on our flight to Bangkok, even though I had a huge amount of leg room in first class. I literally couldn’t fit my foot into my shoe when it was time to leave the plane.
I bought better flight socks for my longer flight from Sydney to Abu Dhabi, and they really kept the swelling down.
5. Small blanket
A lot of long-haul flights will provide you with a small pillow and blanket, but sometimes it’s better to be prepared with your own as you can never be sure that there will be one waiting for you. I think a blanket makes it so much easier to sleep on a plane.
6. Face wipes
Planes are dirty, dirty places and all of that recycled air can have your face feeling a bit worse for wear. I always like to freshen up my skin with a face wipe mid-flight. They’re not the best things for your skin but you’re limited on a flight so if it makes you feel better, do it.
7. Anti-bacterial Gel & Wipes
As I said, planes are dirrrrty. I like to wipe down the tray in front of my seat and anything else I will be touching on the flight. I often get sick after flying so I like to take precautions to decrease the chances of it happening. Antibacterial gel is also a must for trips to the loo, after touching the door handles.
Goes without saying that earphones will make a long-haul flight a LOT more bearable. Can you imagine forgetting earphones for a 14 hour flight? I dread the thought. Although, my flight with Emirates did provide us with earphones, but they were only connectable to the tv screens, so you’ll need your own for listening to music, podcasts or watching downloaded content on your phone.
9. Phone charger
Etihad’s screens also featured usb ports where you could plug your phone in to charge, which was very handy.
I always like having the option of reading a book on a flight in case my eyes get tired of screens.
Flying dries out your skin big time and long-haul flights are much worse for your skin. I like to keep my skin moisturised during a flight so that it’s not too bad afterwards.
12. Anxiety Reducing Tools
If you’re like me, and often experience anxiety while flying, speak to your doctor. I don’t take medication for my anxiety and use mindfulness and meditation to calm myself while flying, but I know that medication can help. I also find that holding something in my hands like crystals really helps to stop my hands tensing up too much, or a small teddy.
13. Chewing Gum/ Sweets
I always buy sweets to suck or chew while the plane is taking off and landing as it helps with your ear popping.
Snacks are so important on a long haul flight. Airplane food is not very appetising and buying food on the plane is always very expensive so I always buy a few things to get me through the flight in Duty Free.