As Australians, it’s hard to holiday anywhere overseas without having to endure long airplane trips. Lengthy travel times are just a normal part of most voyages and are usually very uncomfortable. There’s not much we can do to make these journeys shorter but we’re here to equip you with some essential travel hacks for long haul flights that hopefully make the process more bearable.
1. Noise Cancelling Headphones
One of the best things you can take on a long haul flight is a great pair of noise cancelling headphones. We recommend the Sony H.Ear On Wireless Headphones for their impressive ability to drown out ambient noise. On planes, you’re often battling with roaring aircraft noise, crying babies or inconsiderate passengers who are talking too loudly. So it’s a great idea to bring your own headset and transport yourself into a little bubble of sound that you actually want to hear. Make sure to grab a pair that feels nice and comfy on your head because you might be wearing these for several hours at a time.
2. Eat at the Terminal
Plane food is generally full of sodium which is dehydrating. Before your flight, it’s a good idea to eat a light and fresh meal in the terminal. Your body will thank you for it later and you won’t be starving on the plane. We highly recommend also grabbing something extra to nibble on during the flight too. This so you have a less salty, healthier alternative but also just in case you don’t like anything the airline is serving.
3. Use www.seatguru.com
Before choosing your seat on the flight, hop onto www.seatguru.com. This website provides a rundown of different aircrafts and helps you to make informed seat selections. Seat Guru also supplies details such as onboard amenities and publishes user comments for specific seats. This online database is one of the most useful travel hacks for long haul flights because it helps you have a more comfortable journey in the air. For example, did you know that Air France 747 economy seats 23A and 23L don’t have windows? There are plenty of helpful comments like these on Seat Guru that can save you from some headaches down the track.
4. BYO Entertainment
Even though most planes have a decent selection of tv shows and movies, it’s good to be prepared for the chance that you might get bored during the long flight. Taking your own entertainment is a nice way to keep yourself busy, especially if you’re travelling alone. Grab a tablet or laptop and load up some TV shows or movies that you haven’t gotten around to watching just yet. Downloading your airline’s entertainment app will also allow you to stream content while you’re in the air.
5. Pack a Portable Charger
This is not only one of our favourite travel hacks for long haul flights but also comes in handy throughout the rest of the trip. Taking a portable device charger is an excellent way to ensure you don’t run out of battery on the plane and succumb to the boredom monster. Having enough battery on your device also comes in helpful for when you land. This is especially the case if you’ve never been to your destination before. If you happen to get lost on your way to the hotel, hop onto your charged smartphone, open up Google Maps (which works offline) and find your bearings. Pack a portable charger like the Mipow Power Tube to ensure your device always has juice when you need it.
6. Sit Near the Wings
If you are a nervous flier or tend to get motion sick choose a seat over the wings. This is the aircraft’s centre of gravity and experiences the least amount of turbulence during a flight. Planes are designed to rock like see-saws so sitting in the middle generally allows for a smoother ride.
7. Invest in a Great Carry-On Bag
Make sure you have a bag that fits all the in-flight essentials but doesn’t take up too much space. Have you ever gotten to your seat and noticed that other people have already jammed their bulky suitcases where your’s is meant to go? A slimmer carry-on means that there’s a better chance of it fitting easily into an overhead compartment. The limited space also means that you become more ruthless about what you take onto the plane. Luggage options like the Herschel Bowen Travel Duffle are great because of all the separate storage compartments inside. The Bowen also splits in half like a traditional suitcase which makes packing and unpacking more convenient.
8. Exercise Before the Flight
This is probably the last thing you’re thinking of doing before you jet set off, but it’s one of the travel hacks for long haul flights that we swear by. Try to fit in a decent amount of exercise the night before or on the day you fly out. There are two reasons why this is really beneficial. Firstly, exercising releases chemicals in your brain that help to reduce stress. This makes for a much more relaxed time spent up in the clouds. Secondly, you’ll be more likely to feel tired as the hours pass pay. It’ll be easier to doze off and fall into a deep sleep if your body is exhausted.
Hopefully, with our list of travel hacks your next long haul flight will be the most pleasant one yet. We guarantee you’ll love these tips so much that it’ll be difficult to imagine how you ever travelled without them.