For many of us, flying is not a pleasant experience. The idea of spending an extended length of time sitting in a cramped seat next to a complete stranger while eating overpriced, mediocre food is something that doesn’t appeal to the majority of us. However, there are ways you can make your travel experience a little more bearable. Here are some simple tips for a comfortable flight.
Whether it's a long or short journey, these tips for a comfortable flight can help:
1. Wear Comfortable Clothes
One of the best and easiest ways to make sure you have a pleasant trip even before the plane has left the gate is by wearing loose-fitting clothes. Wearing your favorite pair of old sweatpants and coziest sweater may not be a way to win any fashion points, but you will be thankful you did.
2. Drinks lots of water
With a variety of drink options available to you onboard your flight, it’s easy to ignore boring old water. Don’t do that. Coffee, alcohol and soda prevent you from being able to sleep and dehydrates your body. This can make for an unpleasant experience, especially if you’re going on a long transatlantic flight - making this one of the most vital tips for a comfortable flight!
3. Choose a good seat
In today’s world of online booking, you have the ability to see the seat arrangements for your flight ahead of time. Take advantage of this by choosing a seat that accommodates all your needs. Do you prefer a window seat so you have a spot to rest your head? Are you tall and require the additional room that an aisle seat provides? By choosing your ideal seat, this puts you in a good position to have a comfortable flight.
4. Tune out all the noise
One of the most sure-fire ways to have a bad flight experience is if you have a loud person sitting next to you or a crying baby who can’t seem to calm down. One of the best ways to tune this out is by bringing noise-cancelling headphones that will block out the noise of your fellow passengers and the sounds of the airplane engine.
5. Bring a sleeping mask
If you’re on a long flight, a good way to start your trip on the right foot is by getting some shut eye on the plane. One of the best ways to make sure the conditions are just right for sleeping is by bringing a sleeping mask with you. In addition to blocking out the light from the flight, a sleeping mask also helps mentally prepare you for rest.
6. Don’t cut it too close
One way to make sure you have a comfortable flight even before takeoff is by leaving enough buffer time at the airport. A good rule of thumb is to leave 2 hours’ buffer for domestic flights (90 minutes if you have no bags to check in). For international flights, you should arrive at least 3 hours in advance. It’s much better to arrive with some time to spare than to have to run to your gate. It’s much better to save the stress and arrive early. Use that extra time to have a drink at an airport lounge.
7. Plan ahead
While most airlines now offer a variety of in-flight entertainment options, it is still a good idea on longer flights to plan out how you want to spend your time. If you are someone who enjoys movies and TV, then watching your personalized television might be a good way to spend your time. However, if this is something that doesn’t appeal to you, make sure you’ve brought a good book or some work to do.
8. Bring a good travel pillow
Along the same lines of bringing a sleeping mask, another effective way to make sure you have a comfortable flight is by bringing your own travel pillow. Not only will doing this make it easier to fall asleep, but it will also make for a more enjoyable travel experience overall.
9. BYOB (Bring your own blanket)
Airplanes can often be incredibly chilly places to sit. However, you can’t guarantee that your airline will provide a cozy blanket to warm up. Play it safe by putting a blanket in your carry on. It’s a guaranteed way to make your seatmates jealous.
10. Wear slippers
Another way to ensure comfort on board a flight is by wearing cozy slippers on board. Take off your dress shoes or even your trusty sneakers and instead put on a pair of slippers or compression socks.
11. Bring your own food on board
We all know airplane food’s bad reputation. Don’t settle for mediocre and overpriced airplane fare. Instead, bring your own food on board to make sure your hunger needs are sufficiently satisfied—and save a few bucks while doing so!
12. Travel light
Having ample leg room under the seat in front of you is vital in order to have a comfortable flight. Make things easier for yourself once you’re on board by bringing one small carry on that will easily fit in the overhead luggage compartment. Take out any items you’ll need during the flight (i.e. magazines, iPod, sleeping mask etc.) and then you won’t have to worry about fumbling through your bag during the flight.
Stretching shouldn’t just be reserved for athletics. Stretching before you get on your airplane will prevent you from feeling still and out of sorts when you get off your long flight.
14. Bring chargers
If you are relying on personal electronic devices as your main source of entertainment while on your flight, make sure you bring appropriate chargers or fully charge them before you leave.
15. Be pleasant
This might seem like a no-brainer, but one of the best ways to make for a pleasant flight experience is to be pleasant yourself. If you go on your flight with a positive attitude, you might even make friends with your seatmates, and ensure a comfortable experience for you and everyone else around you.