How to survive a long haul flight

A long haul flight can be a daunting proposition, with some flights topping out at well over 10 hours. Even for the lucky people that can nod off quite easily on planes, such long travel times can prove a difficulty and the last thing you want to be doing is feeling run down for the first day of your holiday. Thankfully there are lots of tips available to make sure that your journey is pleasant and not too stressful. The time will fly!

Before You Fly:

Get a good nights sleep the night you travel. Many would think that the more tired you feel the easier it’ll be to get some sleep, which isn’t the case. It’s a very risky tactic to believe that the flight is a great place to catch up on sleep as this can back fire substantially. When exhausted you’ll often find yourself more prone to feeling uncomfortable and lack the ability to switch off.

Exercise the day before you fly – This’ll help keep your body clock stable and fight the symptoms of  jet lag. Exercise keeps your body motivated in what although may seem as a period of immobility,  is actually very tiring.

Don’t drink alcohol the day before – Walking onto the plane with a hangover is a disaster waiting to happen, as a headache at 32,000 feet won’t quite get you into holiday mood. A night cap on board might be a good idea however!

Dress comfortably – You can always change into your holiday gear on arrival, there’s no need to look smart. Comfy clothes, comfy flight. Jogging bottoms and a comfy t-shirt/jumper is all you’ll need.

Eat a good meal before you fly – This will prevent lots of snacking on board or over indulging on foods that won’t help and naturally prepare the body for rest. On the other hand, there has been several scientific reports that one should partake in fasting 16 hours before flying to avoid jet lag. Fasting tricks the body into thinking it’s starving and so it’ll keep itself awake, but when you eat before the flight, the body will wind down allowing a softened experience of jet lag. This is not necessarily advised, however, as it is probably too extreme for most people going on holiday.

Whilst Flying

Get an aisle seat or exit row – A nice view or multiple hours of worrying about disturbing others, what’s your preference? You can drink water and stay hydrated without feeling like the need to try and store it like a camel. No more upsetting people when the toilet is needed, also stretching your legs every now and again is highly important. Encouraging blood flow is a great way to avoid stiffness in joints and stop any potential thrombosis forming, which is essential for the older generation of travelers. Moving, flexing and stretching the legs will increase circulation and you’ll be much better off for it, when it’s time to get off the plane.

In-flight Entertainment – There’s not much chance you’ll be out cold for the whole flight, so make sure that you’ve got the ability to wile away the hours when you’re awake. It’s well worth checking the in-flight entertainment which is usually one of the latest released movies and can take your mind off the long haul ahead and help you relax. Only you know what entertains you the best, whether it be a good book, video games or music. Make sure you’ve got a whole weaponry of favoured entertainment in your hand luggage.

Avoid caffeine – Coffee, soft drinks like Coke and even chocolate can provide with energy/alertness that you just don’t want. Water or milk is perfect for hydration.

Sleeping Position – You might as well not bother if you’re going to fall asleep and wake up like you’ve been punched in the neck. If you’re an experienced traveller, you’ll have certainly seen some odd sleeping positions in your time. Heads up against the window, heads on the tray, heads in the hands and heads on other passengers are all but too common sleeping positions on these type of flights. Consider buying a neck pillow if you have the space to carry it around in your suitcase, this will allow a more comfortable flight. You may get a few stray looks, but experiment and find what’s comfortable.

Upgrade – If all else fails you can always upgrade to first/business class, where you’ll experience comfort like no other.

For a quick look at easier methods of sleep, Turkish Airlines have had a complete refurbish of their on-board facilities. To learn more about flying with Turkish Airlines, use ou contact us page here.

It’s a hard task at first being in the air so long, but travellers have struggled to do it for years on end. All you can do is find what works for you in terms of sleep, food, drink and entertainment. Make your flight as enjoyable as one could expect.

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