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  • Writer's pictureTrey Tracy

How to Survive a Long Haul Flight Without Even Trying

Updated: Oct 5, 2020

In spite of my travel resume, believe it or not, I still feel anxiety when it comes to long haul flights. It is true, and the reasons for this anxiety ranges from thinking I might miss my flight to feeling trapped in a flying tube high up above the clouds for a lengthy time.

But at the same time, how can I still enjoy these long haul flights?

Well, in spite of this anxiety, I have grown very fond of long haul flights over the years and learned to embrace them as an important part of the journey. In other words, rather than worry about anything out of my control, I tend to focus on ways to make this part of the process a little more fun.

With all that said, here are some tips to help you survive a long haul flight and arrive safely overseas:

5 Straightforward Tips for Surviving a Long Haul Flight

  1. Pay Attention to What Clothing You Wear On my first few long haul flights, I paid little attention to the importance of comfortable clothing. That is to say, I failed to realize that what you wear absolutely matters. In short, if you wear tight jeans and a thermal base layer you are sure to suffer from the heat. However, taking too much heavy clothing will weigh you down and possibly cost money if you happen to exceed the baggage allowance. Instead, try to stick with lightweight clothing and multiple layers. Gym leggings or sweatpants are great examples of comfortable clothing for a long haul flight. Also, wearing trainers are a comfortable option for the airport and easy to take off when you get up in the air. Tip: Remember that there is always something you can do about the cold but little you can do when it feels too hot. More specifically, remember that you can ask for a blanket on international flights.

  2. Bring a Sweater (and Hear me Out!) On the other hand, are you familiar with how cold it can get up there? And I know that this might seem like a contradiction to the point above, but please hear me out. The temperature on a long haul flight is something that changes from hour to hour. When you take off, it is likely that the cabin will be relatively warm. However, it is just as common to fall asleep for a little bit, only to wake up with a chill. For this reason, I always have my sweater on hand and ready to pull on or maybe use as a blanket. Either way, this should ensure that you have the right clothing for whatever the scenario may be.

  3. Choose Healthy Snacks International flights are not exactly known for serving up the finest cuisine. That is not to say you won’t find the old Crème brûlée here or there but for the most part, the food is pretty bland. More importantly, if you have any kind of an appetite, you will most likely feel hungry toward the middle or end of an international flight. With this in mind, take time to prepare a snack for the journey. Now, before you pick up a candy bar, chips or something greasy at one of the airport fast food restaurants, you should know that this kind of food and diet will do you no favors at 30,000 feet. On the other hand, a nice salad or healthy sandwich can be just what the doctor ordered when you find that the onboard meal was not enough.

  4. Bring Your Own Entertainment Most international flights will have an interface with movies, games and music. But how often is there something worth watching on these screens and what if it doesn’t work? When the onboard entertainment fails to work there is very little anyone can do about these things on an international flight. Alternatively, I suggest that you take your own entertainment. That is, bring a Kindle, laptop, iPad or maybe a phone with something interesting downloaded. Either way, you get to pick exactly what you watch and you know it won’t break down!

  5. About Boarding and Arrivals Finally, what is the rush with travelers these days? I mean it often seems as though the first people on the plane are the first to arrive in our destination. But what if you miss the flight? The air crew never leaves until they make several announcements for a missing passenger. The truth is, when you see passengers rushing to board a plane, this too is a symptom of anxiety and something to be avoided. Instead, get your flight off to a relaxing start by sitting back and waiting for the line to disappear into the plane. Also, when everyone is rushing to get off the plane, just sit tight and remember that they need to wait for their baggage at the other end. As with anything in life, anxiety is something that can be managed and through practice, I have been able to enjoy and look forward to long haul flights. In many ways, I guess the moral of this story is that we can sometimes overthink and try too hard when it comes to having an enjoyable flight.

Either way, have a safe trip and enjoy the ride!

If you need a travel agent to help you book that international trip, I would love to help you. Contact me, and let’s begin planning.

Do you have any tips for surviving long haul flights you would like to share? If so, please post them down in the comments section.


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