Tips for Surviving Long-Haul Flights | The Style Scribe

This may be my first trip to Japan, but I’m no novice when it comes to long-haul flights. I’ve been to Australia twice, Argentina, and the UK/Europe a bunch of times over the years. It didn’t really occur to me to talk about this topic for some reason, so you can thank one of your fellow readers for asking about it on SnapChat! Today I’m going to share a few tips with you about how to survive those torturously long flights overseas – here’s what to wear, how to stay healthy and stay comfortable:

  1. Hydrate – while you may be tempted to order wine or champagne on the plane to celebrate the start to your vacation, try to stick with water if you can. Being in the air really, really dehydrates you, and drinking alcohol will further complicate that. I read somewhere recently that you should plan to drink eight ounces of water for every hour you’re in the air – it seems like A LOT (and too many trips to the lavatory), especially when considering my flight is just over 14 hours, right? But you will arrive feeling fresh and more awake, AND it may keep you from eating unhealthy snacks throughout the flight. So many times I feel the pangs of hunger only to realize I’m just extremely thirsty. One more note on this topic – if you wear contact lenses, take them out before the flight, and apply eyedrops every hour or two to keep your eyes from drying up and getting irritated.
  2. Bring your own snacks + food on the plane – this is actually something I do for nearly every flight. I usually always cut up an apple, bring along a couple of these sticks, and throw in a bag of almonds or some other healthy snack. For long flights (depending on the time), I’ll find a salad in the airport to go, and stash it under my seat until I’m ready to eat it – I usually avoid ones with meat so that the food doesn’t go bad if I wait for a few hours. Unless you’re in first or business class (which most of the time, I’m not), the food isn’t that great on planes and certainly isn’t healthy. Even the healthier menu items are bound to have SO much salt in them! Also, while they do serve you drinks on flights, I always like to have a large water bottle on hand under my seat should I wake up desperately thirsty.
  3. Wear comfortable layers – the blankets on planes are flimsy and lightweight, and I am almost always cold on flights. If you watched my video on packing tips, you’ll know I suggested wearing your heaviest coat on the plane – while the initial purpose is to save room and weight in your checked luggage, it can also double as a second blanket if the plane is chilly! For long-haul flights, my usual outfit includes a soft pair of leggings, a tee and a thick cardigan.
  4. Eye masks and noise cancelling headphones – there’s nothing more annoying than people talking next to you when you’re trying to sleep, or shining a light in your face as their trying to read a book. To avoid issues with your neighbor, bring your own mask to shut out the light and a good pair of headphones to block out sound. Most planes these days provide masks, but again, these are flimsy. This one stays in place and completely covers the area around my eyes to keep light from penetrating.
  5. Get on schedule as soon as possible – if your flight takes off at noon, but it’s midnight at your destination, try to go to sleep as soon as you get in the air. I always do this for flights to the UK and Europe, because the flights usually take off between 4pm-8pm (which is 10pm-2am London time) from Dallas – then when you wake up, you’ll be landing and already be right on schedule the next morning! Take melotonin or another sleep aid to help aid the process if you must, but the sooner you get to sleep the better you’ll be. This will help you avoid major jet lag!
  6. Get up and move around – since I drink so much water on the plane, I get up pretty often to use the bathroom. Whether you do that or not, you absolutely should get up, move around and stretch your legs on long flights like this. Being sedentary in the air for so long can actually cause blood clots! Every few hours, stand up and do a few standing stretches – doesn’t have to be anything crazy, but just get moving to keep the blood flow evenly dispersed throughout your body!
  7. Skincare routine – just like tip number one, the key to any long-haul flight is to stay hydrated and moisturize your skin. When your skin dries up it gets dull, and who wants that? I usually wear makeup at the airport, but once I’m settled in my seat on the plane, I remove my makeup with these wipes. You may remember me mentioning this mask – I have a travel sized version of it that I take with me everywhere. It’s the perfect mix between a serum and a face oil, and really locks in moisture. That’s the first product I apply, then I put on some of this lip balm so my lips don’t get dry as I sleep. Those are the only two products I use for a good portion of the trip, simply because the mask itself does the trick – it takes a few hours to be fully absorbed into the skin, so there’s not anything else you need to do! Once the mask is absorbed hours later, I apply regular moisturizer. On the last leg of the trip (an hour before landing), I’ll wear these de-puffing eye gels for thirty minutes.

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