How to Survive Long-Haul Flights in Economy

It’s time to head into the skies, traveling to an exciting (or not-so-exciting) new destination in the space of just a few hours. Unfortunately, if you’re traveling a long distance, even in an airplane, you’re in for a long ride. Want to make your flight more comfortable, both for you and your seatmates? Try some of these key strategies to settle in and enjoy your ride.

1. Pack Some Help in Your Bag


Tuck a tennis ball or massager–avoid the vibrating ones unless you want to risk setting it off as you move through security–into your bag. When you sit down, place it at the small of your back. This will provide a little extra support that will help you stay more comfortable and avoid lower back pain throughout the flight. Not only that, by rolling it a little, you can give yourself a DIY massage, turning your endless flight into a more comfortable and enjoyable time.

2. Visit the Restroom at the Right Time


No one wants to get stuck waiting endlessly for the bathroom in the plane, nor do you want to know that there’s someone standing out the door, dancing in place while you try to take care of business. Choose your timing wisely! Just after the flight attendants have delivered meals and moved out of the aisle, go ahead and slip off to the restroom. Most of the time, the other passengers are too busy with their food to visit the restroom.

3. Add Some Snacks

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Having snacks isn’t just a great distraction for kids. Munching a little during your trip can help keep your energy levels up, prevent that dreaded crash before you reach your destination, and even help calm your anxiety, if you’re an anxious flyer. Tuck in snacks that are high in protein or add some complex carbs to your carry-on bag.

4. Bring Along Toiletries

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On a particularly long flight or if you’re traveling overnight, don’t ignore your usual hygiene routine! Pack your bag with the intent to brush your teeth, wash your face, and keep your hands clean. Add toothpaste and a toothbrush, hand sanitizer, face wipes, deodorant, and sanitary wipes to your bag, and make sure you schedule in a little time for hygiene before you settle in to go to sleep on your flight. Not only will this make you more comfortable as you fall asleep, when you wake, you’ll be better prepared for whatever else your day might bring.

5. Keep Drinking


It’s tempting to avoid water on the plane so that you don’t have to take the dreaded walk to the bathroom. Unfortunately, that can lead to dehydration–even more likely because of the dry air on planes. Instead, go ahead and keep drinking at least one cup of water per hour. You’ll be more comfortable, and since you already know when to schedule your restroom breaks, you’ll be able to handle your trips with ease.

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