Long haul international flights can be grueling. You’re exciting to get to the destination, but being strapped into a seat for eight plus hours is not anyones idea of a good time. Here are some tips for making the most of your next long haul flight:
Try to snag a whole row of seats. A couple of days before your flight, look up your itinerary on the airline’s website and look at the seats available. If you’re lucky and the plane isn’t sold out, there might be a whole row of empty seats available, probably towards the back of the plane. For example, on large aircrafts that have a 2-5-2 seat arrangement, couples will probably choose two seats on the side, and so will single travellers who are hoping no one sits next to them. This often leave a whole row of five wide open. Switch your seat to the one right in the middle of the five. Board as soon as the possible once you’re at the airport and claim your empty row of five seat.
Better yet, fly business or first class. Paying for these tickets is out of the question for most of us, but using credit card miles for travel in premium cabins is a great way to use your miles. Have all the leg and arm space you want, maybe even a flat bed, and free food.
Optimize your comfort. This means everything from dressing in comfortable clothes to bringing a neck pillow, earplugs, and eye shields. If you’re someone who gets cold on airplanes, make sure you have warm socks and a jacket. Don’t wear anything that itches or annoys you. Who cares if you look good on an airplane? After 10 hours in a metal box, everyone is going to come out looking pretty shabby.
Pack snacks. Almost all international flights serve meals, but just in case something happens to the food, or it doesn’t fill you up, having snack available is crucial. It’s also nice to snack on something while you’re watching some in-flight entertainment. Which brings me to…
Get psyched for all the movies you can watch. Most airlines have personal in-flight entertainment screens now which is great for keeping yourself busy. There’s always new movie releases as well as TV shows, documentaries, and sometimes even live sporting events. Use this time to catch up on all the movies you wanted to see but haven’t had the chance to yet.
Lastly, get up and move around every few hours. Being cooped up in that seat is brutal on your legs and knees. Get up and move around the cabin for a bit, even if it’s not to use the restroom. It will break up the monotony and also re-energize your body by getting the blood flow working again.
Long haul flights aren’t the best, but they’re necessary for exploring this beautiful world of ours. Think about all the cool stuff you’re going to do when you get to your destination. Plan some activities while you’re there. Hang in there, you’ll be at your destination soon enough.