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Florida Guide > Travelling

Jet lag-how to cope with a change of time zone.

It can take about one day to recover for each time zone you cross. There are various methods you can try that may help you avoid jet lag or reduce its effects. Different people will prefer different methods – you need to work out what works best for you and your family.

If you can, try to get plenty of sleep over a few days before you travel. You could try going to bed an hour earlier (when traveling east) or later (when traveling west). When you arrive and it is still daylight, try to spend as much time as you can outside or near a window. This will help to regulate your body clock.

When on board the plane, adapt to the local time straight away and change your watch. Imagine – in terms of your body clock, that you have already reached your destination. This will give you an extra 8 hours to adjust! Drink plenty of fluids on the plane and avoid alcohol and overeating. Eat meals according to your destination and at the same times. Do some light exercise and try to nap or sleep if you can. Avoid sleeping tablets as they last for around eight hours and you may be so knocked out you don’t move about on the plane which can be dangerous.

When you arrive, get into your new routine immediately. Eat and drink as normal and try to go to bed at the right time. You will find it much easier when traveling east-west as you can push yourself to stay awake. However, it is more difficult to force slap when you are not tired which is the case when you travel west-east.

Children are very adaptable and cope very easily with jet lag so try not to worry about the little ones having a change of routine. If you arrive in the evening, try going out for a walk or a light meal to keep the kids awake. The first morning, your body may wake you very early. Get up if you want to, but keep things low key. Perhaps read or have a light snack. Try to drift back to sleep again if you can just for a couple of hours.

You will be amazed how quickly the whole family will adapt to the change in time. You will be so busy and excited about your fantastic villa and holiday that, in reality, you will barely notice. In an ideal world, try to book flights home that give you forty eight hours free time before you have to go back to work or school. This will give you time to regulate your body clock back again.

We aim to provide accurate and useful information, but if you feel anything provided here is not accurate or out of date, please email us with the address of the page concerned and any comments so we can amend as necessary.

Page added on: 26 March 2008
Viewed 3784 times since 1 September 2008.

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