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Tips for Staying Comfortable During a Long Flight

There are many factors that can make traveling long distances less than enjoyable, from the dry airplane air to cramped legroom. While staying comfortable during a flight may be challenging, it’s not impossible. Make the most out of your travel time by considering the suggestions below, crafted to help you feel your best on the plane, and even after you’ve reached your destination.

Choose Your Ideal Seat

Booking your flight in advance may give you a higher chance of being able to choose your ideal seat. If you have longer legs, try and opt for an aisle seat in order to maximize your legroom. If you’re planning on sleeping throughout your flight, try and opt for a window seat so you have something to lean against while you rest, and won’t be disturbed by passengers trying to get in and out of row.

Dress for Comfort

Before heading to the airport it’s important to consider your choice of clothing. For a long flight, it's beneficial to dress in layers to prepare for temperature changes that can occur on the plane. Wear stretchy comfortable clothing such as a pair of yoga pants or joggers, and a loose fitting T-shirt. Always bring a cozy sweater that’s easy to take on and off just in case the temperature on the plane is fluctuating. Don’t forget to also wear a comfortable pair of footwear that you can easily slip on and off during your flight.

Sleep on the Plane

Sleeping during your flight is an easy way to pass the time and can always help combat jet lag and fatigue. While this may seem tempting, don’t deprive yourself of sleep the night before your flight. If you end up not being able to sleep on the plane you will be even more fatigued when you arrive at your destination. Another important thing to remember is to avoid alcoholic beverages. Alcohol can impair your ability to fall asleep also causing fatigue later on. If you feel yourself falling asleep during your flight don’t resist the urge, you don't know if you’ll be able to all asleep later on in the journey.

Pack the Essentials

While you should try to keep the size of your carry on to a minimum, there are a few essential things that you should consider bringing in order to ensure that you stay comfortable throughout your flight. To combat chilly temperatures on the plane pack a cozy travel blanket. You should also consider a good neck pillow to help support your neck and head while you rest. An eye mask and a pair of noise cancelling headphones or earplugs will cancel out any excess light and noise that may be preventing you from falling asleep. It’s also important to make sure you pack or wear a thick pair of socks so you can stay comfortable and sanitary when taking your shoes off during your flight.

Consider Your Long Term Health

Sitting down during a long flight for hours at a time can put travelers at risk for getting blood clots in the legs, this is also known as deep vein thrombosis. To avoid this condition it’s important to take regular breaks from sitting every few hours to walk around and stretch your legs. Avoid crossing your legs when you’re sitting down as this can restrict blood flow. Lastly, hydration is key in combating these kinds of health problems.

Stay Hydrated

While on the plane travelers can become very dehydrated very quickly due to the high altitude and dry air. In order to avoid dehydration make sure to drink plenty of water throughout your flight. While you’re not allowed to bring large sized liquids through the security check at airports, there are plenty of places by airport gates where you can buy large water bottles to have with you on your trip. Try to avoid beverages that can cause further dehydration like alcohol and caffeine, and combat dehydration even further by keeping your electrolyte levels high with drinks like Gatorade or Pedialyte.

Combat Dry Air

The recycled air on an airplane can not only internally dehydrate you, but it can cause your eyes and skin to experience more dryness than usual. Lip balms and moisturizers that are small enough to bring in your carry on can help you combat this dry air and will keep your skin feeling hydrated and fresh. If you’re a contact lens wearer, you might want to opt to wear your glasses during your flight to avoid dry and irritated eyes. If you feel like treating yourself, pack some facial wipes and a hydrating sheet mask to keep your skin hydrated and glowing during your travels.

Maintain Your Hygiene Routine

As well as staying hydrated, it’s a good idea to pack a few basic hygiene products that you can use to freshen up throughout your flight. Pack the toiletries that you use on a daily basis like deodorant, a toothbrush, and toothpaste to help keep up with your bedtime and morning routine. Using these products throughout your flight will help you feel clean and fresh even after you’ve arrived at your destination.

Keep Yourself Entertained

Before you get on the airplane make sure all your electronic devices are charged, and check to see if your airline offers in-flight entertainment. If you plan on streaming music or watching your favorite television series on your own personal device, make sure to download your entertainment beforehand, or check to see if Wifi is available on the plane for free or for purchase. Most importantly, try to fill the time you’re spending traveling with activities that you normally wouldn't have time for at home. Reading a good book or listening to an enticing podcast can make your traveling time pass even quicker

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