The hardest part of going on your first International trip is always the thought of being stuck on a plane for hours on end. It can seem daunting but with these tips you can tackle your first long haul flight with ease and comfort.
“Life is a journey, not a destination” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
- Eye mask– to help you fall asleep
- Sleep aid– to help keep you asleep
- Water– to keep you hydrated
- Things to keep you entertained– I always like packing a book or magazine to read and music to listen to. Most international flights have on flight entertainment but in the rare case they don’t you want to be prepared
- Comfy socks– Planes can be cold and it’s important to keep comfortable. They usually provide blankets but wearing fuzzy comfortable socks to be on the plane is crucial for comfort
- Mini toiletries to freshen up– I always like to bring a small toothbrush and toothpaste, Goodwipes to freshen up, lotion, hand sanitizer, and chapstick in a small bag. It helps you to get ready to sleep as well as refresh you after a long flight when you’re about to land
- Noise canceling headphones– Over ear noise canceling headphones are FAR superior to the standard inner ear headphones. Not only do they block out the noise but they’re way more comfortable
- Passport– Obviously you need this is you’re flying internationally
- Avoid eating greasy food for a few days prior to your flight. You don’t want to get on the plane feeling uncomfortable and bloated
- Go online and pick your seat in advance. I always love the window seat so I have the views as well as something to lean on when I sleep
- Dress for comfort… not the runway. It’s important that for a long flight you’re wearing something you’re ok being in for a long time. I always dress as comfortably as possible so I can sleep.
- Buy snacks and water before your flight. Obviously you can’t bring water with you from your house so make sure to buy a large bottle of water to drink in between the different meal services to stay hydrated. I also buy a little bag of nuts to snack on if I get hungry.
- Change your watch to the new local time. This helps to mentally prepare yourself for the new change. Try and sleep on the plane in the appropriate times of your new destination to help minimize jet lag.
- Drink as much water as possible. Not only is hydration key to fighting jetlag but having to pee every hour also makes you get up and walk around which you need to do!
- Try to avoid alcohol. I know having a cocktail or two can help calm those jitters but it also dehydrates you and prevents you from sleeping comfortably
- Get up and walk every 2 hours. To help prevent any blood clots forming or your feet looking like honey buns when you land
- Entertain yourself. A long flight will seem a LOT longer if you’re not entertained. Watch movies, read a book or magazine, play games, or do whatever you can to occupy your time and mind
- Get sleep. It’s very important to try and sleep as much as possible on your flight. The more rested you are when you land, the less jet lag you will have
- Freshen up before and after your flight. Brush your teeth, take off your makeup if you’re a girl, and get in sleep mode when you first take off. Get comfortable. About 30 minutes before you’re about to land freshen up! It helps you to wake up and start the new day
Good pointers. I’m always partial to bringing at least 2 granola bars on flights. I’ve been delayed/stuck on the plane enough times to know that a snack will get me by. Sometimes the flight attendants bring a bag of nuts like you suggest, but sometimes not. A granola bar is light but filling.
I also like the inflatable head pillows because they don’t take up much room when you’re traveling at your destination.
I have yet to invest in a pillow… I need to though! Thanks for writing!