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Top 7 Tips to make the best of long-haul flights


Flying long-haul is something many people dread, so we’ve put together a list of some of our top tips for when you find yourself stuck aboard a plane 35,000ft in the air. From what to wear to where to sit, we’ll help you get the best out of your time on board, and hope you arrive feeling ready to enjoy your visit.

1. Wear comfortable clothing and layer

This may seem obvious, but often people get caught up in ‘dressing for an upgrade’ and forget that regardless of whether they get it or not, they still have to spend over ten hours in the air. Nowadays you can easily dress for an upgrade, whilst also maintaining comfort in the air. Be sure to work in layers too, all too often aircraft can be way too hot, or too cool, so layers allow you to accommodate any temperature. Equally if you want to wear your suit on board, simply pack some more comfortable clothing in your carry on and change when you’re in the air.

2. Pick your food carefully

Both before and during your flight, what you eat can have a big effect on how you feel. We do recommend you try and eat during the flight as this can help your body sync to your new time zone quicker. Try to avoid heavy carbs as you digest slower in the air, and they can leave you feeling bloated and uncomfortable. Also avoid too much sugar, as this can lead to you feeling restless and irritable.

3. Pick your seat carefully

We all have a preference when it comes to window versus aisle, but once you’ve made that decision, there’s still whereabouts on the plane you decide to spend 10 hours or more. There’s nothing worse than getting to your seat and finding it wedged up against the toilets, without a window or with limited leg room so do be sure to check out sites such as SeatGuru, to ensure you get the best seat for your money.

4. Keep hydrated

The recycled air on board aircraft can play havoc with you on the inside and outside. Drink plenty of water before and during your flight, and don’t be shy in giving your hands and face a good dose of moisturiser before and during your flight. Try to avoid alcohol as this can dehydrate you, but, if a glass of vino or a beer help settle the nerves or send you off to sleep, one or two won’t hurt. Equally coffee and fizzy drinks can keep you up when you should be resting, so avoid if you can.

5. Gear up

A few well-chosen additions to your carry on can make all the difference when you travel. A good neck pillow can help you sleep, and keep your off your neighbours’ shoulders, while noise cancelling headphones or earplugs can block out engine noise and any general hubbub around. Bring entertainment such as a kindle or iPad loaded with books and movies and, to help you emulate your bedtime routine at home, pack a small toiletry bag with toothbrush, toothpaste, face wipes and moisturiser.

6. Try a sleep aid

If you aren’t able to get to sleep naturally on flights, even in loose clothing and after trying your best to emulate your normal routine, then maybe try one of these natural remedies for helping bring about sleep. Both Ambien and melatonin are popular as they bring about a more natural sleep rather than pharmaceuticals such as diazepam.

7. Upgrade

Of course, the best way to enjoy a long haul flight is to upgrade. Whilst we understand this may seem out of budget, some airlines do offer good deals if you’re signed up to them. Ad hoc upgrades are mainly a thing of the past, so if you do want one, politely asking and dressing appropriately may swing you one, but it is unlikely. Equally, just skip flying commercially entirely and charter a private jet with Air Charter Service.

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