Surviving a long haul flight

So, my parents have just gone on a trip. Their trip began with a ridiculously long flight route and what better opportunity than this to write about how I survive long haul flights. What’s more, their flight began from 6.30am which adds more frustration to already long flight route. The good thing (or not necessarily good thing) is that my parents have each other to keep company, in my case, I’ve been flying solo (as sad as it is, pun intended), for quite some time now and the only short haul flights from New Zealand are usually to Australia or to some of the Pacific Islands. Here are my tips on what I do during long haul flights.

1.      Flight time

If you are flexible with your departure time I highly recommend that you choose a red-eye flight. For those not familiar with the term, a red-eye flight just means a late night flight. These are usually best for long haul flights in my opinion. One of the biggest reasons for this is, you’re most likely tired from the day. You board your flight, eat some dinner & within the hour or maximum two, you’re fast asleep. If you’re lucky you sleep through the night and well flight time and wake up in the morning with not much time left before the flight lands.

2.      Music

I cannot get on a plane without my personal headphones. I know all airlines give them out these days, which is great. I like keeping my headphones handy, in case I want to listen to my music on the plane. However, what I will recommend is, that if you’re feeling very tired and struggle to sleep on the plane, browse through the music selection on their entertainment box and find something soothing or pleasant to listen to and slowly drift away. If you happen to wake up due to turbulence or gravitational pull, you’ve got soothing music playing in your ears that keeps you calm and you can either just drift away again or continue listening to it as you wish or if you’re wide awake, watch a movie. The possibilities are endless.

3.      Movies

Back in the days, I genuinely could never sleep on the plane, I struggled a lot with it. These days not so much. Prior to getting on a flight, I will usually research to see what movies are playing on said flight. I usually do this a week or so before my flight. Yes, this information is readily available on the airlines’ website or if you just insert the exact search phrase on to Google, you can usually find what you’re looking for. If it’s a long haul flight and there aren’t enough movies playing that take your fancy, you’ll need a back-up plan.  This is where tip number 2 comes into play.  Or have a look at what television series they’ve got on. If I’ve not had a chance to check out the movies prior to my flight, I’ll usually take some time to browse through the selection and I’ll select one (which I’ve hopefully previously seen) and I will leave that till the end. My reason for this is because I find that the last couple of hours on the flight are usually the longest.  You’re cranky because you’ve just been on a flight for a mammoth number of hours. You’re tired because you haven’t really rested. All you really want is for the plane to land so you can get through airport security, get your bags etc and to get to your hotel, have a shower and pass out. This movie I’ll usually start watching maybe when there’s about two hours left or at max three hours left to land. I know this movie takes my interest so it will keep me occupied. If I don’t finish watching it, no problem, I’ve already seen it before. Whatever you do, please don’t look at the flight map in the last few hours of the flight as that just makes it worse. With the newer movies that’s available, I try and watch these pretty much as soon as we take off. It’s a struggle watching new movies on such a small screen, I know, and it takes a long time for the movie to capture your interest. I try and do this whilst I’m relatively fresh on the flight. That way there’s more of chance for me to watch the entire movie.

4.      Phone

Being able to charge your phone flights now days is a blessing in disguise. You can use your phone for longer without worrying about  it running out of battery. It will probably run out of battery, but if you’ve got your cord handy you can charge it immediately. Spend some time playing on your phone if need be. I sometimes get that moment of inspiration whilst I’m on a flight and I get a lot of video or blog ideas. This moment of inspiration is so intense that I need to write it down. I don’t really like using my laptop when I’m in a flight and so I’ll usually just start typing on my phone in the notes app. There are A LOT of notes sitting on my phone that I need to turn into videos or blogs, but all in good time.

5.      This one’s for you

No seriously! Everyone has their own way of surviving long haul flights and I want to know what is a tip you’d give? Is there something that just has to be there, or something you’d definitely do to get through a long haul flight? Tell me in the comments below! Sharing tips are good, you might learn a thing or two.

Until next time,