Trust us when we say that we KNOW long-haul flights. We’ve taken flights spanning over 24-hours – both in coach and business cabins, may we add – with only a short layover in-between the different legs. Yoyo’s recent trip to Rio, for example, took a whopping 32-hours. Was it worth it? For sure, but 32 hours is still a wee bit insane. Long-haul flights are great for accumulating miles, but are absolute rubbish for your skin and back – and sanity.
In a way, taking a long-haul flight is like having a baby. The process is long and arduous, but once you’ve arrived at your far-flung destination, you realise that all that pain was worth it. Also, both involve backaches. It’s a terrible comparison – #mothersaregreat – but you get the picture. So, to train you up to become a total pro at your next long-haul flight, we’ve compiled a list of tips and things that we’ve found to be quite helpful in dealing with the on-flight misery.
1. Get an aisle seat. Forget about that damned window view. If the flight is long, there’s a high chance that you’ll need to take a leak more than twice and being closest to the aisle will make things that much easier. Especially when you’ve got seat mates who are heavy sleepers and/or have had one too many cups of booze on-board.
2. B.Y.O.S, where “S” stands for snacks. Some airlines serve really great meals, but snack-wise? Not so great. There’s a limit to how many packets of chips, peanuts, apples and sandwiches you can eat before you grow sick of them. We’ve brought things like lamingtons, muffins, Shake Shack burgers, macarons and a whole jar of assorted nuts on-board. Fancy.
3. Forget about airport style. You’re going to be glad you didn’t give two shits about what you wore to the airport when it’s time to snooze. Leave the cool clothes for after you land, but before that, just stick to what’s really comfortable – t-shirts, sweatshirts, hoodies, sweatpants, loose-fit pants. If you want to wear pjs, wear pjs!
4. Drink plenty of water. Those little cups that they serve sporadically during the flight isn’t going to cut it. It usually isn’t even filled to the brim. Instead, request for actual bottles of water. If that’s not available, consider buying a bottle after getting your bags checked, and then getting the flight crew to fill it up on-board. Alternatively, you can keep requesting for cups of water. But don’t feel shy about it. You paid good money for that ticket, make the most out of it.
5. Don’t be embarrassed about doing stretches on-board. Your body needs the release – find a spot on the plane and just do it. We know people who actually go as far as doing yoga poses. And that one guy whom you think will judge you for doing a Cobra or a Downward Dog? He’s probably waiting for someone to start the ball rolling. Guess who’s going to suffer from muscle aches? NOT YOU.
6. Mask, mask, mask. The air on-board is SO dry. If your lips are chapped by the first hour, your skin probably isn’t having that great a time either. Slap on a sheet mask or use La Mer’s Moisturising Cream, our personal favourite.
7. Eye masks. Little things, but they come in handy when you need a nap and it’s still daytime outside, or when the lights abruptly come on during the many meal services. It helps you fall asleep better, too. And while you’re at it, why don’t you get a funny-looking one for the jks?
8. Keep yourself entertained. Nothing makes time pass faster than a highly addictive TV series, but most in-flight entertainment systems only carry a handful of episodes. Be prepared and load up your laptop thick with shows that come with many, many seasons so that you’ll never run out of episodes before you land. Game of Thrones, Sex and The City, The Office, Parks & Recreation, Family Guy, Breaking Bad, 30 Rock,Mad Men – just head to IMDb and pick your poison.