Flying—love it or hate it, it’s often a necessary part of a dream vacation.
If you live in Canada, you know that to travel to exotic, remote, warm, adventurous and fun destinations, you will likely have to get through a flight of at least five hours or more.
We know that feelings of pins and needles, back pain and bloating are not exactly what you want to experience moments before you land at your dream vacation, and we here to tell you how they can be avoided with a little pre-travel planning.
In fact, flying can actually become enjoyable if we alter our mindset to slow down, be present and be positive once onboard. How often do you allow yourself time in your daily routine to do absolutely nothing? How often do you allow yourself to sit back, relax and read, or watch movies for hours on end, losing track of time? That little nirvana is what flying can be for us, if we pack a positive mindset and plan appropriately.
Top hacks for surviving (and enjoying) long flights
Pack the perfect carry-on
Bringing all of your essentials and personal favourites is a critical part of being comfortable and happy onboard. If you are short on ideas, check out our blog on How to Pack a Carry-on Bag.
Before leaving for the airport, be sure that all of your electronic devices are fully charged. Plenty of airlines and airports do have charging ports, so be sure to bring your chargers and adapters with you in your carry-on.
Pick your seat
Whether you prefer middle, aisle or window, pick your seat in advance. Having the seat of your choice can add a huge level of comfort to your trip. Some people like to curl up and sleep next to the window, while others like the freedom of the aisle seat; there is something for everyone if selected in advance.
Dress in layers
Planning your travel outfit is usually all about comfort, and while that is very important, it’s also essential to account for temperature changes onboard and in airports. Dress in comfortable layers that are easy to add or remove, depending on the cabin temperature. Feeling comfortable and the right temperature can ease anxiety and help aid sleep.
Contrary to popular belief, it’s not a good idea to board a plane exhausted. Of course certain circumstances might not allow for a well-rested boarding but, if possible, try to load up on sleep for a few nights leading up to your trip. You will feel healthier, more relaxed and in a better state of mind to take on the journey.
As most airplanes now have some sort of wi-fi, bringing work onboard is a great idea to help pass the time. It’s not often that you have dedicated hours without phone or text disruptions to work on your career or personal to-do list. Top tip—pack noise cancelling headphones for a quiet office working experience.
If you want to make time pass more slowly, be hungry! Avoid hunger pains by packing some of your favourite snacks for between meals. Your body will thank you for healthy snacks like nuts and dried fruit.
Staying hydrated onboard is the most important travel hack. Before you board the plane, during the flight, and after arriving at your destination, drink water! We suggest at least one glass of water (200ml) every hour. Flying is dehydrating due to the environment, so take care to prevent cramps, nausea and fatigue by drinking up.
In addition to staying hydrated, moving about every hour is a great idea when onboard. Simply get up, have some water, walk to the back of the plane, do some standing stretches and then head back to your seat. You will be surprised at how rewarding this little routine can be for your body during a long-haul flight.
Bring your favourite book, TV show, or enjoy the onboard entertainment and get lost in the moment. Allow yourself to really relax and enjoy doing nothing.
If all else fails, remind yourself that it’s not that bad and you will soon be at your dream destination doing the things you enjoy most. If that doesn’t calm your nerves, just be happy that you are not on the world’s longest recorded non-stop flight tracked at just over 19 hours!
From all of us at TierOne Travel we wish you safe, enjoyable travels.