Lauren’s Travel Tips

Travel tips – surviving long haul flights

Australia is a fairly isolated country – surrounded by ocean; at the bottom of the globe; and not central to most other countries (even whole continents) – which makes travelling overseas long and tiresome. Basically, no matter what country you travel to – be it China, England or the U.S.A – a long haul flight is a necessary part of the journey. Although the idea of spending hours cramped up on a plane may sound daunting and draining, it can be a manageable (and even exciting) part of your trip…depending on how you go about it. Below are some tips for surviving long haul flights.

Choose a reliable airline
The first step begins before you even leave the ground (or enter the airport, for that matter). This tip  is to choose the right airline. Although the savings from a budget airline may be tempting, it is important to choose an airline that offers best value for money. This means choosing one that will provide great service and comfort. Being stuck on an aeroplane for numerous hours is not ideal for anyone, but the situation can be bettered with comforts such as spacious seating, good food, and friendly air hostesses. The extra money you spend will pay off in the end. You should also look at the route the airline takes. If you want to break up long flights, go for an option that has one or two stopovers.

Stay comfortable
Aside from choosing a great airline, you can be at ease in the air in other ways. Try to reduce the amount of carry-on luggage you take, and store it in the overhead lockers (rather than under the seat in front of you) in order to give yourself maximum leg room. It is a good idea to pack luxuries such as a neck pillow, eye-mask, and earplugs for some extra comfort mid-flight. Perhaps you could even bring a toothbrush and deodorant. Lastly, dress appropriately. You’ll feel a lot more cosier on a long flight in a pair of trackies and a jumper, than in jeans or other tight clothing.

Amuse yourself
Probably the biggest tip to surviving long haul flights is to bring entertainment. Whether this be an iPod, tablet, or a book. Flying involves a lot of waiting around, so in order to make time go faster, it is important to keep yourself occupied. In-flight entertainment services are another great way of preventing boredom. Most airlines offer a great (and practically endless) choice of movies, TV shows, music, news, and games on their entertainment system, so you’re bound to find something you enjoy and can pass time with.

Sitting down for long periods of time is both uncomfortable and unhealthy. It is important to get up regularly out of your seat to stretch and get your blood flowing. If possible, take a walk up and down the plane’s aisles. It will help you stretch out your legs and is also a nice break from staring at the seat in front of you.

Get some rest
Although most of your time is spent sitting down, doing hardly anything, travelling is actually very exhausting. Sleep is a must in order to survive extended flights. It may be difficult to get comfortable, but try to sleep as much as you can so you can stay awake when you get to your destination. However, it is important to adjust to the time-zone of your destination as soon as you arrive to reduce jetlag. Be aware of the time in your host country, and make sure you’re not too well-rested that you won’t be able to sleep once you arrive.

And there you have it. Some helpful tips on surviving long haul flights. Hopefully by following these tips, your trip overseas will be comfortable and enjoyable. Good luck!