While every airline has its own definition of what’s considered to be a long-haul flight, they’re generally any direct or non-stop flight with a travel time of six hours or more. Unfortunately, being a passenger on such a long flight can be boring and uncomfortable.
For one, you’ll have limited movement since you need to stay buckled in your seat for most of the flight. For another, you’ll also be dependent on the available in-flight entertainment. If you’re lucky, your airline may provide each seat with access to an expansive library of movies, shows, and games to keep you preoccupied. But if you’re not fortunate enough to have spacious legroom or superb in-flight entertainment, being on a plane for so long can easily dampen your mood.
To make your journey more bearable, you’ll want to bring along certain items that can keep you comfy and entertained. So, before you head to the airport, make sure you pack the following for a more pleasurable long-haul flight experience:
The cabin temperature can drop to uncomfortable levels during your flight. Aside from packing a jacket or thick clothes you can wear over your travel outfit, you’ll want to bring additional accessories to keep you warm from head to toe. Aside from garments that you can layer, don’t forget to bring an extra pair of cozy socks. If you like keeping your toes and lower legs warm, crew socks are great options, as they’re long enough to reach up to your mid-calf.
During a long flight, you may also experience discomfort and swelling in the feet. This is usually due to the decreased blood flow in the legs caused by long periods of inactivity. To prevent this health issue, you can opt for compressions socks instead of crew socks. There are brands like Burlix mens socks with enhanced compression technology for such situations. These socks can apply ample pressure to the lower legs to reduce any swelling and pain.
A Travel Pillow
Many people consider a small travel pillow as a must-have for every long-distance flight. While these compact pillows come in many different sizes and styles, most travel pillows offered today can be easily wrapped around the neck. This kind of shape provides ample support for your head, ensuring you won’t wake up with neck and shoulder pains from staying in the same sleeping position for hours.
When selecting a travel pillow, pick one made out of soft materials to ensure a comfy rest. Also, get a neck pillow that comes with a hook or clasp. This will allow you to easily clip the pillow onto your carry-on instead of having it occupy precious luggage space.
An Eye Mask
If you’re flying for six hours or more, you’ll probably be getting some shut-eye during that time. However, it can be challenging to get restful sleep while the cabin lights are on. It’s just as difficult if some of your fellow passengers prefer to keep their window shades open during a daytime flight.
That’s why you need to pack an eye or sleep mask in your carry-on. As the name implies, sleep masks are made from soft materials and designed to be worn around the eye area. They offer a snug fit around the head to help block out bright lights. Bring at least one of these with you so that you can have some undisturbed rest during your flight.
An Entertainment Device
While most long-distance flights offer in-flight entertainment, you can never be certain about how extensive the selection of movies and shows will be. You also never know if the entertainment system in your assigned seat is actually working properly, in the first place.
To ensure you won’t get too bored, have your phone, laptop, or tablet ready. Make sure to download your favorite shows onto your electronic device of choice so you can access your media offline. Also, charge your device before boarding. The last thing you want is to find that you can’t watch something on your phone or tablet because your gadget is running out of juice.
Earbuds or Headphones
If you’re bringing your own entertainment on board, pack a pair of earphones or headphones that are compatible with your electronic device. This way, you won’t be disturbing other passengers while you watch movies or listen to music. In case you want an immersive auditory experience, get noise-canceling headphones to reduce any background sounds around you.
Depending on your preference, you can choose between earphones or headphones. Earphones rest on the outer edge of your ear’s concha. They are very portable and won’t take up a lot of space in your carry-on. By contrast, headphones are bigger devices that wrap over the head. While they may be bulky, they feature padded cushioning for added comfort and can be better at blocking out background noise, depending on the model you buy.
You want to arrive at your destination feeling and looking refreshed, which can be challenging to achieve when you spend the entire flight staying in your seat. Your hair can get messy, your clothes can become wrinkled, and your breath can smell bad after such a long period of sitting.
To ensure you look presentable once you get off the plane, pack a change of clothes and a hygiene kit with some basic toiletries. The kit can contain a travel toothbrush, a small tube of toothpaste, a hair comb or hairbrush, and some deodorant. When packing your toiletries, make sure to follow the airline’s maximum allowable fluid volume for carry-on liquids and gels. That way, you can go through airport security without a hitch.
Traveling on a long-haul flight can be exhausting and uncomfortable. Fortunately, there are some things you can bring on board to make the experience a little more enjoyable. By packing these must-have items, you won’t just stay comfy during the flight. You’ll also start your journey on a more positive note.