8 Tips and Tricks for Surviving Long Airplane Trips

8 Tips and Tricks for Surviving Long Airplane Trips

Sometimes travel is quick and painless; other times you just keep hoping that the destination is worth the trouble it takes to get there. Trust me, it almost always is. Here are a handful of pointers for surviving long airplane trips. Maybe equipped with these tips and tricks, the next time you have a 30-hour trip with four layovers, it’ll be manageable, or even downright enjoyable!

 

 

1. Pack Snacks

My number one rule for both life and travel: always bring snacks. I recommend a combination of pretzels or crackers to ease a surprise upset stomach, candy or dried fruit for a pick-me-up, and nuts to keep you going between planes or less-than-satisfactory meals.

 

 

2. Carry a Refillable Water Bottle 

If you’re in a country with drinkable tap water, fill it up once you’re past security. This will save you a lot of money on airport bottled water, especially if you have a long layover. If you’re in a country with sub-standard tap water, use this insider secret: once you’ve boarded the plane (but before take-off), ask the flight attendant to fill up your bottle. This might seem silly, but it’s better to have a full bottle at arm’s reach—you never know if turbulence will delay the drink cart or if you’ll be sleeping while they make their rounds. Nothing makes a flight worse than dehydration-induced headaches or nausea.

 

 

3. Take Money

Bring a small stash of dollars AND euros with you, in addition to your credit card. Or even better, the local currency if you can get your hands on it ahead of time. This is for times when you have the urge to impulse-buy airport souvenirs that are three times the price as they are on the street, when you have a sudden hunger attack, or when your flight gets cancelled and you’re stranded. And in the most extreme cases, you may have an unexpected detour to a new (unforeseen) country. [Yes, this really happened to me with a long, impromptu layover in Burundi while traveling from Rwanda to Kenya. Hours in, I got really hungry and was in a bind because clearly I didn’t think to stock my wallet with Burundian francs.]

 

 

4. Consider Getting a Passport Cover

Besides sprucing up your boring passport, you might also shield yourself from the unwanted attention, expectations, and/or animosity that sometimes comes when people see you’re a certain nationality. Added bonus: It’s always fun when you can feel everyone around you playing “Guess-her-nationality”.

 

 

5. Think about Investing in a Soft-sided Suitcase

It’s less protective than a hard suitcase and generally doesn’t have wheels, but it makes your luggage malleable—this means you can pack in a lot more clothes, presents, and other goodies in your bag. This flexibility might even make the difference between being able to stuff your suitcase into the overhead compartment and having them force you to check it at the gate…after having painstakingly removed your liquids at every security checkpoint, lugging your bag around for hours, and squeezing it into the tiny stall every time you went to the bathroom.

 

 

6. Dress in Layers

This may sound like mom advice, but dress in layers. Just because a hot airport leaves you sweating, doesn’t mean the plane won’t be freezing. Plus, by wearing your layers, it saves space in your suitcase!

 

 

7. Don’t Bring Your Computer with You

It’s not worth the space, weight, or risk of theft. Besides, there’s plenty of time to peruse Facebook when you’re sitting at home and NOT roaming around an exciting new city. If you have a smartphone or a tablet, these might be worth bringing to make sure the people at home know you’re alive, to look up last-minute sights and routes, and to help document your trip. PS: Definitely bring an extra memory card for your camera so that you don’t have to worry about deleting possible gems before being able to see them full-size on your computer.

 

 

8. Make New Friends!

Yes, of course, pay attention to stranger danger. Don’t leave your bag with someone you just met. (No matter how heavy it is or how quickly you’ll be back.) Don’t give someone your hotel information or remaining travel plans if you feel uneasy. But at the same time, travelers are often a wealth of information and looking to share their travel experience. Maybe it’s your first time in Greece, but the woman you’re sitting next has gone once a year for the past 20 years. Maybe a friend of theirs owns a cool restaurant that will become your new favorite. Maybe the guy across from you has an extra concert ticket for an artist you’re dying to see.

 

By being a prepared traveler, you can sit back and enjoy the trip [almost] as much as the destination. Stay open, stay safe, and stay empathetic to those around you. Bon voyage!

 

By Ashlee Sang

 

 

Related Opportunities

Au Pair in the USA

Travel to America as an au pair!

Big Indochina Adventure

The Big Indochina Adventure is just that...big on adventures, incredible sights, experiences & good times.

INDIA: Challenging Work with Orphaned Children in bustling Madurai!

Work with victims of female infanticide and abandoned children in Madurai and make a difference. Currently there are 29 children at the orphanage, and your help is needed!

European Experience

Experience Europe, Contiki style! A great trip itinerary for those wanting quality time in Italy without skipping anything important on the way there. 

Thai Island Hopper West

Some of the world's best beaches in some of the ultimate places to chill make this Thai Island Hopper trip a must. From busy Phuket, head to paradise on legendary Koh Phi Phi, before Krabi & its amazing scenery.

Great Britain & Ireland

This trip is a whirlwind of sightseeing, history & culture as you hit the highlights of England, Scotland & Ireland.

European Adventurer

The European Adventurer is just that, an adventure. From the cosmopolitan sights of Paris, to the romance and passion of the Italians, even out into uncharted tourist territory in Albania and Croatia, there aren't too many boundaries left to cross. 

Thai Island Hopper East

Sun, swimming & good times are what you’re into, then the Thai Islands are all yours. Jump your way from Koh Samui to Koh Tao, finishing it up with the legendary Koh Pha Ngan. With multiple nights on each island, you can sit back on island time.

Mayan Heat

Take the maximum Mexican dosage & explore it all, with a dash of Belize & Guatemala in the mix to keep things fresh. It is jam packed full of culture, flavours & World Heritage sites… our experiences will have your Instagram updates going out of control!

Outback Adventure (Start Alice Springs)

Travel the land 'Down Under'. Sleep under the stars in a bush camp, take a hot air balloon ride, then grab a cold beer with all your new friends at one of the oldest Territory pubs.

Bigwest plus Calgary Stampede

Want the USA & Canada? Get the best of the west with some of the countries favourite spots. From the beaches to cities to mountains to lakes, this trip is an epic blend of adventure, culture & chilled out times

North America Epic Adventure

Epic = grand in scale, and that’s exactly what this trip is. From big cities & monuments to the great outdoors, historical sights, cool nightlife & endless experiences, this is 55 days of adventure guaranteed to feed the inner explorer & make every moment count.

Volunteer in Koh Samui Island, Thailand with School Renovation Program - from just $37 per day!

Want to do something will last long after you have returned home? This program is for you!

Rio Carnival Tour (6 days)

Be a part of the world’s biggest party Carnival on this whirlwind eye-opening 6 day adventure in Rio de Janeiro. 

Mediterranean Highlights (Start Madrid)

Kicking off in Madrid, this 2 week trip takes you to all the coastal Med hotspots. 

Rio de Janeiro to La Paz Overland Tour

An intoxicating trip through Brazil and Bolivia.

Volunteer at a Wildlife Rescue Centre in Malawi

Join placements from 2 to 12 weeks with the opportunity to get involved in a whole range of projects from wildlife rehabilitation through to habitat conservation and environmental education.

LA to the Bay

From L.A. to the Bay, we've got you covered.

Best of USA (Start Los Angeles)

The name says it all. With 4 hot USA cities wrapped into 1 tour, these are 2 weeks you don’t want to miss out on! Start in the 'City of Angels' & hit the streets to see the Walk of Fame and the stars' homes in Hollywood Hills.

Best of Europe (Start Amsterdam)

Short on time? Got lots to check off your 'things to see' list? The Best of Europe is the tour for you. Get straight into holiday mode with sightseeing in Amsterdam before driving to Berlin & Prague, finishing in style with a flight to Rome. 

 

 

      

 

About  |  Disclaimer  |  Privacy Policy  |  Company A-Z  |  Advertise  |  Press  |  Contact

One World 365 © 2007 - 2017