Travel Tip: Surviving Long Flights

If you’re like us and don’t usually fly first/business where you have extra space and comfort, then you’re probably not excited about flights where you’re sitting in cramped seats. Fret not, we have been there and along the way have found ways to make flights more bearable while in coach. With a few tips, hopefully we’ll be able to address some ways to make that flight a bit more enjoyable and pain free!

Depending on how long your flight is, you may or may not have complimentary meal service. Most flights overseas or flights that are 5-6+ hours will usually provide some sort of in-flight food service. These meals, however convenient, are not always the best tasting or most fresh. We recommend picking up a light meal or some snacks before you get on the plane. Doing this will guarantee that if your meal is less than satisfying, you’ll at least have peace of mind knowing that hidden in your carry on is a delicious snack to kill that hunger.


One of the greatest in-flight entertainment advances is the installation of touch screen monitors for each seat in the larger airbuses. These planes are usually the ones used for long flights or newer aircraft models. However, if you aren’t lucky enough to get an upgraded plane, which are few at this point, or your flight is shorter, then you probably have a smart phone or tablet that you should bring with you. Though the entertainment systems have an array of movie, game and television options to help get you through your flight, they don’t have everything. We recommend that you bring your smart device with your favorite TV shows and movies already downloaded along with you. If you opt to pay for Wi-Fi, apps like Netflix and HBOgo carry many of the most current popular shows and having them on the plane can be the perfect time to catch up on shows.

If you’re taking a long flight, it’s inevitable that you’ll cross multiple time zones. This means you’ll either be landing around the same time you left or potentially the following day. The time of your flight will also play a role in what time and day you reach your destination. We like to try and get flights that are going to put our destination landing time somewhere between morning and midday, that way we don’t feel like we’ve lost too time during transit. It’s always a smart idea to try to get some shut eye on these flights that way, when you land, you’ll be rested for the rest of your day. Sleeping will also help the flight seem shorter and more bearable. Be sure to bring a travel pillow- the pillows provided by the airline may not always be comfortable and supportive enough. If you have trouble falling asleep on planes, you can ask your doctor or medical professional for recommendations on sleep aide medications too.

If you’ve ever ridden in a bus, car or plane for any extended period of time then you know how stiff you can get from sitting the whole time. To help keep the stiffness and sore muscles from setting in, we recommend getting up and moving around every hour – hour & a half so that you stay loose during the flight. This will help with blood flow while your legs and back will thank you for it. Getting up and walking around or standing in a clear space will not only help you, but give your neighbors that freedom to relax with more shoulder room and not feel like everyone is intruding on each other’s personal space the entire flight.

Flights and transit in general are usually the worst part of any travelers journey, but it shouldn’t be painful and unenjoyable. You should be able to arrive at your destination feeling fresh and ready to go and we hope the tips we provided help you achieve that! 

Checkout Travel Tip: How to Prepare for an International Trip for more tips on preparing for an international trip!


-Allie & Chris


Comments are closed.