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How to Survive a Long-Haul Flight

For even the frequent traveler, long-haul flights can be daunting. We’re sharing our best tips to help you conquer your next long-haul flight, so you land refreshed and ready to tackle your new destination.

  • Stay Hydrated– If you were to spend a day in the desert, hydration would be your top priority (we would hope), so flying in a plane shouldn’t be any different. Most of us are accustom to 30% + air humidity in our day-to-day lives, but the air humidity inside an airplane hovers around 10-20%. Without proper hydration, long-haul flights are a serious shock to your system. For flights over 4 hours, Aerospace Medical Association recommends that you drink 8 ounces of water for every hour you’re in the air. If you have an alcoholic beverage on board, double up on the water- you’ll thank us later.
  • Be Comfortable– Take advantage of the fact that long-haul flights are no longer a formal affair! Give your body the best opportunity to rest and relax by wearing loose fitting clothes. We also recommend layering your clothes so you can adjust as the temperature varies. Be sure to wear comfortable footwear throughout the plane and give yourself a foot massage from time to time to combat the swelling that will occur.
  • Get Moving– Never sit for more than two hours at a time on a plane. Sitting for hours at a time will increase your risk of blood clots and DVT (deep vein thrombosis). Researchers suggest walking up and down the aisle to stretch your legs every two hours, at least. Even while at your seat, flexing and relaxing your calf muscles, rolling your ankles, and squeezing your toes will help to get your blood moving.
  • Prepare for Sleep– Some of us aren’t as lucky as others when it comes to sleeping, but there are a few measures you can take to ensure you get a bit of shut-eye.
    • 1) Wear an eye mask as flying through numerous time zones can mean unwelcomed daylight.
    • 2) Support your neck with a pillow. Give your neck a break so your head doesn’t go rolling in the middle of your slumber (your neighbors will also thank you).
    • 3) Pack some basic toiletries in your carry-on (any liquids should be travel size), including your toothbrush. Going through a similar routine as you would at home will signal to your body that it’s time to rest. Baby wipes are also extremely handy and will keep you feeling clean and fresh throughout your journey.

With these tips and a few good movies or books, your next long-haul flight should be a breeze. Happy traveling!