The long-haul flight is both a blessing and a curse. A blessing because it opens up the world as a destination and offers the closest thing you can get to teleportation – from freezing temperatures in the UK to much warmer climets abroad; and a curse because of the sleepless nights, the dehydration, the confined space and more. To get more health information visit the NHS website 'How to have a healthy and comfortable flight'
As well as ensuring you drink plenty of water and bring along plenty of layers to adjust your body temperature at will, the key items to pack in your carry-on ought to be focused around one thing and one thing only – beating the boredom as you travel from A to B. Keeping yourself engaged and entertained can do something for reducing the strain of those hours. After all, sometimes there’s only so much sleeping you can do!
So, in the spirit of making your journey as pleasant as possible, here are a few top tips to help you keep boredom at bay on board a long haul flight:
Sleeping or plugging yourself into some music and resting your eyes, is likely to take up a good couple of hours on a long-haul flight. So, in order to give yourself the best chance of sliding with ease into the land of nod, pack a few items to keep you comfortable. As well as layers and a cosy pair of socks, consider packing a travel pillow to help you rest your head when you’re ready to snooze. Additionally, a large scarf or shawl can double up as a blanket to assist in tricking your body that you’re curling up in bed. To combat the bright lights of the cabin and the din of the outside world, we’d recommend a black-out eye mask as well as noise-cancelling headphones or ear plugs. Better remind your neighbour to wake you if the food cart trundles by though – there’s nothing more devastating than finding you’ve slept through that.
Keep your eyes on the prize and pack a travel guide. Whether you want to make notes on places to eat, drink and shop or sites of interest to explore on arrival, there’s no better time to lose yourself in the excitement of the holiday ahead. Even if you aren’t really a planning kind of person, picking a good guidebook will offer pages of interesting information about the culture, history and even cuisine of a destination. You’ll be an expert by the time you land.
If you enjoy your music, make sure your smartphone, iPod or other digital device is loaded up with playlists to relax to during the flight. Zoning out to music can help you drift off to sleep as well as distract your mind if you’re an anxious flyer. Ensure you have a good mix of favourites and new tunes to keep your mind engaged for the entire journey.
As any avid reader will know, there’s no better way to make time fly than by allowing yourself to become absorbed in a real page-turner of a book. Airport bookshops can offer a treasure trove of literature to help you get through even the longest journey, but in this technological day and age, you don’t even really need to concern yourself with the effort of turning real, physical pages. Treat yourself to a Kindle and you’ll find an endless virtual bookshop right at your fingertips – just make sure you download your chosen editions before you head up into the sky.
Most long-haul airlines will offer an in-flight entertainment system of some kind. If you’re lucky you might be able to catch up on some of the latest movies or binge-watch re-runs of your favourite shows. If you don’t want to rely on the airline’s choice, pack your tablet as well as a battery pack to make sure it stays charged with juice, and enjoy hours of entertainment, all chosen by you.
You might find your packing lists are dominated by clothing, gadgets and toiletries when you prepare to head off on holiday. Just make sure you jot down to buy travel insurance as soon as you’ve booked your flights. The right plan can offer travel insurance cancellations cover for scenarios such as your airline going bust. Use a comparison tool like the one we offer at Medical Travel Compared to make sure you’re getting the right deal for you.