Staying comfortable on a long flight

I use to dread long flights. They’re uncomfortable, boring and you never know who you’re going to be seated next to for 12 odd hours. However, as I started to travel more and the frequency of the long flights increased, I realised there must be a way where you can stay comfortable, relaxed and most importantly sane, on a long flight. Here is what I’ve learnt so far.

Reserve a good seat

Being stuck next to a toilet isn’t an ideal place to be seated for an extended period. With most airlines allowing you to choose your seat online before you board, it’s important to try and snag yourself a good seat. If you’re unsure which seat to select, there are sites such as SeatGuru which provide information on the best seats to choose.

Stand up every hour

It can be as simple as walking up and down the aisle once every hour or if you’re a bit more adventurous, doing a few quick stretches. Moving around will help blood circulate and will keep your muscles relaxed. Most airlines offer in-flight instructions on what exercises and stretches you should do on a long flight.

Drink plenty of water

As the humidity on commercial airlines is quite low, it’s very easy to get dehydrated. So it’s important to drink plenty water throughout your flight and stay away from drinks which speed up the dehydration process such as alcohol and caffeine.

Dress comfortably

We all like to look nice, but comfort definitely trumps fashion on long plane trips. Soft, loose fitting clothes are a necessity if you want to remain comfortable on a long journey. Remember to bring a jumper as it can become quite cool too.

Take off your shoes

Granted that you don’t have bad foot odour, it’s perfectly acceptable to slip off your shoes once you’re settled in.

Use eye drops

With the air on planes being quite dry, it’s easy for your eyes to quickly dry out and become sore. Taking eye drops on board will solve this by keeping your eyes lubricated and refreshed.

Bring your own entertainment

While you’ll have in-flight entertainment on long flights, the selection can be somewhat limited and may not be to your taste. If you bring your own selection of music or movies, which you can watch on a laptop or mp3 player, it’ll keep you occupied, entertained and make the flight go much quicker.

Don’t look at the time

An obvious one, but it’s amazing how often I’ll glance at my watch during a long trip. If you continually look at the time it’s pretty much to guarantee that the flight will feel longer than it actually is. Put your watch away and don’t succumb to looking at the in-flight tracking system.

Travel light

The less carry-on items you have, the more room you’ll have when seated and the more comfortable you’ll be. Keep all your items in one reasonably sized bag which can be placed in the over head compartment.
Submitted on: September 23 2015 Protection Status
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