Surving A Long Haul Flight

Travel | October 22, 2015 | By

My Tips To Staying Healthy During Your Flight

Ok, so I have been an expat now for just over a year which means a lot of traveling. This year I have flown to and from Zanzibar and Ibiza, as well as 2 return trips to the UK. I am also flying back to Scotland today (yay!) and I will be back in the UK again for Christmas. Now I used to love flying, but as you can imagine after all these trips, as much as I am excited to get to my final destination, the novelty has started to wear off.

Planes are a great way to travel, and I always find the service fantastic and the aircraft’s clean. However, with a large number of people in a relatively small place, it is extremely easy for germs and bacteria to spread during your flight. Not only this, you are faced with the possibility of cramps and the risk of clotting disorders from staying in the same position from some time as well as becoming extremely dehydrated and your skin drying out.

I decided to put together some tips for surviving a long haul flight, I feel like I qualify to do so after the amount of flights I have taken this year!

From my experience;

  • Hydrate! Take a large bottle of water onto your flight with you and try and drink as much of it as possible. There is a LOT less humidity on a plane then ground, and this can dehydrate you pretty quickly. Not drinking enough water can give you serious head aches whilst flying, so drink up. Trust me, staying hydrated is much more important than that awkwardness of scrambling over people to get to the bathroom. I have had a head ache on a plan before and it is NOT nice.
  • Take some healthy snacks. Planes don’t always have your dietary requirements available and if your a fussy eater, its best to take some of your own food. I like to take a mix of nuts with me to munch on, especially walnuts which will help you sleep.
  • Make your own packed lunch. If you are pretty serious about what your putting into your body (you should be!), then you might want to bring your own sandwiches (which reminds me I need to make mine!). Plane food can be not only over priced, but over processed too. If you eat good, you will feel good. Eat pretty light if you can, the plan meals can be heavy which can leave you feeling bloated.
  • Pack some hand santizier. I am not doubting the cleanliness of the planes, however you should 100% take some of this stuff with you. If you think about the number of people a plane can hold, just think how quickly bacteria can spread by people touching and using the food trays and over head buttons. Using a hand santizer will decrease your chances of picking up a nasty bug.
  • Pack a lip balm. Your lips can seriously be effected by dehydrating during a long haul flight. Take a moisturizing lip balm and apply frequently to stop them become chapped.
  • Boost your immune system. Just because you have read my tips, doesn’t mean the guy beside you has. Before every flight, I like to drink a dis-solvable Vitamin C tablet the day before my flight and then again before leaving for the airport. This will boost your bodies natural defenses and keep you from picking up any nasty coughs and colds from anyone else.
  • Ditch the make up. Your skin is going to have a tough enough time as it is, let it breath. It will just get worse if you don’t. Plus, what if you fall asleep and wake up with cloggy mascara eyes? Yuck.
  • Moisturize. Just like your lips, your skin will seriously dry out too. Take a small moisturizer with you and apply before you take off, half way through and just before landing to keep your pretty face gleaming.
  • Wear your comfies. Tight clothes will restrict your blood flow and can give you poor circulation. If you are sitting in the same position for a long period of time, with your favourite skinny jeans, you are more likely to get numbness and muscle pains, especially below the waist. I like to wear my VS cotton bottoms.
  • No coffee. If you follow my blog you will know how I feel about coffee (if not click here to read why I don’t drink it). If you are a coffee drinker, you really should try and avoid a coffee on a flight, no matter how sleepy you are. Caffeine makes you restless and irritable, you are less likely to get 40 winks, not matter when you have your cuppa. Coffee is also a diuretic, which makes you need the bathroom more than usual which can be uncomfortable.
  • Listen to rain forest sounds. Sleep is so important, and can be pretty difficult for some people on a plane. When I struggle to fall asleep, I listen to rain forest sounds and I am out cold in minutes. Mediation music and rain noises can help you relax and studies have shown listening to music and sounds like this has a calming effect on the body and mind.
  • Put a pillow behind your lower back. The shape of a seat in an aeroplane is design has your body sitting in an unnatural way, which give you back pains and make them even worse if you already suffer. Pretty much every long haul flight will provide you with a pillow, and if you need extra ask the cabin crew.

I hope you have found this post useful, let me know if you have any other tips which I have missed out. Ok, I am off to take a vitamin C and pack (a lot of jumpers by the looks of the weather forecast)…Happy Thursday!

Jess x