How to be comfortable, or even sleep, on a long flight

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Florida Guide > Travelling

How to be comfortable, or even sleep, on a long flight

General Comfort

Firstly try, if you can, to book a seat which will give you either leg room (an aisle seat) if you want to be able to stretch out and be comfortable, or a window seat if you plan to sleep.

Wear comfortable, loose fitting clothes and make sure you have layers. Sometimes the airconditiong can be very effective!

Make sure you have plenty of things with you to entertain yourself. You might be planning on watching the in flight entertainment but occasionally that doesn’t work properly, so it’s best to have something with you just in case. An undemanding paperback, or a puzzle book, a magazine, an electronic games console or some kind of music player are all good ideas.

Bring your own headphones. The ones provided by the airlines are not always comfortable, or good quality, so if you have your own which you know you find comfortable then it’s best to use them. Noise cancelling headphones are great if you have them.

Unless you are planning to sleep it’s best to move around now and then. As well as exercising your ankles when you are sitting down, you should get up and walk round the plane every hour or so if you can (or at least at the end of one movie and before the start of the next! ).

Bringing your own food can be a good idea. Some people find the meals offered on board to be a bit heavy and digesting them can make you feel uncomfortable.

To keep yourself feeling good drink plenty of water. If you have not brought any on board with you, the cabin staff will be able to provide it for you during the flight. Don’t drink the water from the taps in the bathroom on the plane though, it is not drinking water.

Trying to Sleep

If you want to try and sleep during the flight then be prepared and bring a travel pillow, earplugs, eye shades and even sleeping pills if you have them.

Try not to have chosen a seat which is in the very back of the plane, or the row just in front of the toilets as those seats don’t recline as much as other seats on the plane.

Avoid drinking coffee, tea, wine or spirits. These can all dehydrate you and can make sleeping even harder - stick to water. Try eating a banana. They contain soothing melatonin and serotonin as well as magnesium which is a muscle relaxant. Almonds can also help you to snooze as can turkey or whole wheat bread.

Use the blanket the airline offers and use it to keep your arms in close to your body. Sometimes it’s difficult to get your arms comfortable and by tucking the blanket in round you, that will help. Remember to keep your seat belt fastened over the blanket so that the cabin staff don’t have to wake you if the seat belt sign comes on. Neck pillows can be tricky, but one good tip is to use it back to front which gives your chin support and stops it falling forward.

Happy flying!

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Page added on: 10 January 2009
Viewed 4247 times since 10 January 2009.

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