As exciting as booking those flights and securing your dream holiday might be, there are a few practical considerations to take into account before you can fully relax into your well-deserved break. Organising what you need to take with you, usually by creating and ticking off long-winded lists are a firm part of many travellers preparations.
However, as annoying as it can be to arrive at your destination and discover you’ve left something you will really miss behind, it can be even more irritating to settle into your seat on a flight only to realise that you don’t have the thing you need within easy access in the cabin. It’s not like you can go shopping for those items mid-flight.
So, what sort of items should you buy before you fly in order to make your journey that much more pleasant? We’ve compiled a short list of essential items to help you navigate your journey like a pro.
Although some airlines will feed you as part of the cost of your ticket, you are often limited to the timetable dictated by the flight, eagerly waiting for those moments when the monotony of the long journey is broken only by the distant aroma of food flooding the cabin and passengers’ heads popping up like meerkats in anticipation of their next meal.
Additionally, lower cost airlines and shorter flights might require you to purchase refreshments and the choice can be limited. It is a much better idea to ensure you pick up a few snacks of your own so you can refuel whenever you so choose. Just one thing to be aware of when travelling between certain countries - check the customs regulations as some destinations will prohibit fruit or products that might risk bringing contamination into the country.
Although you will not be permitted to bring any liquids that exceed 100ml through security, once on the other side, you are free to buy drinks that you can take onto the flight with you.
You are likely to be offered free water at various points throughout your flight but sometimes you need that bit extra to stay sufficiently hydrated. Drinking plenty of fluids can help you feel more alert and refreshed once you reach your destination.
Flight socks are also a good idea, especially if you’re embarking on a long-haul journey, to help reduce a possible risk of DVT (deep vein thrombosis). The NHS Choices offer useful information on how to prevent DVT when you travel.
If you plan on catching up on some sleep during your flight, it’s a great idea to invest in something to help block out the sound of the engines and background noise made by the other passengers.
Noise cancelling headphones mean you can relax, shut out the world and listen to your own soothing music or an audio book in peace. However, headphone quality varies between different models so do your research before you buy - it often seems the case that you get what you pay for.
A cheaper option might be to invest in some earplugs to help block out the world while you get some much-needed shut-eye.
Although many of the newer planes now come with a USB plug at the seat which can, albeit slowly, charge items such as a phone or tablet, it pays to come prepared with your own fully charged battery pack. Making sure you have plenty of juice will ensure you don’t run low if you want to watch movies on a personal device, listen to music or make certain your phone is charged before landing.
The air-conditioning on a flight can often make the plane chilly, particularly at night. It is advisable to wear layers so you can adjust to a variety of temperatures in comfort and make sure you have something warm like an extra sweater or scarf to wrap up in if the mercury drops significantly.
Sometimes a comfy pair of cosy socks can do wonders for making you feel more relaxed andsettled at night.
Many travellers swear by a travel pillow in order to avoid nodding-head syndrome when you begin to drop off on a flight. The only issue with travel pillows is they are rarely a ‘one size fits all’ accessory. Some people prefer foam, some like beanbags and others prefer inflatables that they can adjust in firmness. Try before you buy!
Another essential item to add to your holiday check-list is your travel insurance. Make sure you book the right cover for your trip by using a helpful comparison tool like that of Medical Travel Compared. Here you can browse a range of travel insurers to find the best possible cover for your journey. Compare travel insurance deals online now from as little as £5.21!
Have a safe flight!