The long-haul flight can really take it out of you, if you’re not prepared…
While it may be the only time in your life where all you have to do is sit, not answer the phone, watch entertainment and have somebody bring you food and drinks, it can also be quite taxing.
Firstly you want to make sure you have the right seat allocation. Many airlines are now charging extra for the aisle seats (next to the emergency exit doors), and it just might be the best money you could spend for the extra comfort. If you’re a good sleeper on flights then choose a window seat to prevent others from climbing over you in the night. And try to stay far enough away from the bathrooms, they are always a hive of activity and the first place a parent will take a crying baby.
Enjoy of drink from the bar, but don’t overdo it! This will only dehydrate you and make the recovery harder. Drink plenty of water, and if you do take something to help you sleep while flying let your travelling companion or flight attendant know so they are aware. No alcohol if you do take medication for flying.
Some of the best advice is to immediately set your watch to the arrival destinations time and settle into that time frame. It can be hard upon first setting out, as the flight crew will in most cases feed you immediately and commence the in-flight entertainment, but once you’ve had something to eat, take note of the ‘time at arrival’ info and adjust to that schedule.
Carry on something to change into like a long-sleeve top and some warm socks so you can take your shoes off and be warm if the air con is too cold. Eye mask and ear plugs are essential and don’t expect the airline to hand them out – bring your own just to be safe.
I always take some aspirin upon take-off to help thin the blood, which may help circulation. This isn’t scientifically proven, but it’s something that may help. Don’t forget noise-cancelling headphones and your favourite tunes, a change of underwear, some moisturiser and cleanser for your face, deodorant (shower in a can!) and the spirit of adventure in your mind.