I know all about long flights, but especially 15-hour flights as I have taken them quite a few times. My most enjoyable 15-hour flight was to Australia. I flew in Virgin Atlantic Airways and to this day it was one of my most enjoyable flight experiences. Let me also address that the plane was massive. Unfortunately, I have also flown in not so comfortable flights like Delta International flights. The seats are smaller than they usually are on their other domestic flights and no matter how many ways you try to readjust, it’s just hard to get comfortable in those seats. While 15-hour flights are not the most enjoyable, here are a few tips that will help you survive these long haul flights and perhaps make them a little more enjoyable.
1. DON’T buy your ticket last minute
For my trip to Johannesburg, South Africa, we bought the tickets a week before we were set to leave and this is never a good idea because you get the crappiest seats in the very back of the plane that I like to refer to as, “the ghetto.” You want to have enough time to select the best seats, so it is always a good idea to book well in advance. I would even recommend buying business class or comfort seats since you are flying for a longer period of time. These types of seats are on the more expensive side, but you also won’t be getting off the plane feeling like your body got hit by a bus.
2. Charge your phone while you’re in the plane
When it was time to get off the plane, both my mom’s phone and my phone were completely dead. This is never a good think when you are trying to locate the taxi service you pre-booked before getting there. We had to scramble around the airport to find a place to charge my mom’s phone, so we can call our driver. It was not fun and so stressful. After such a rough flight, that’s the last thing you want to be doing.
3. Wear comfortable clothing
You should never get dressed up for a long flight. This is the time when you want to look like a straight bum. Put on your most baggiest and most comfortable clothing. You don’t want to feel constricted in your clothes on a crowded plane. Put your hair up in a messy bun and slap on your favorite sweats. Also consider bringing a sweater because planes can sometimes get cold.
4. Bring a pair of headphones
Some flights do offer complimentary headphones, but not all. You should always bring one pair of headphones with you just in case. It would suck to be stuck on a plane not being able to watch a movie to distract you from such a long flight.
5. Pack some underwear and a couple of outfits in your carry-on
We have all heard stories of people’s luggages being lost and never to be found again. This can happen to any of us, so packing your toiletries and a couple of emergency outfits in your carry-on is a safe bet. Sometimes your luggage is lost and then you get a call that they found it a day or two later. While that’s great, having your essentials in your carry-on can hold you over until then.
6. Get up and walk around
After you’ve been sitting for a couple of hours, it is good to get up and walk around or even stand and place. It gets the blood circulating and can help you avoid getting cramps or other problems.
7. Stay hydrated
Drink enough water while you’re on the plane, but not so much that you have to keep going to the bathroom every few minutes.
8. Pack a book or two in your bag
While movies are great, sometimes a good book can help pass the time. Bring a couple of books that you have been putting of reading for a while.
9. Bring some snacks
While you’re on a 15-hour flight, you typically get two meals and a snack. Sometimes you get three meals, but the meals are not that filling and you might still be hungry after eating the meals, so having a few snacks can help with that. Pack some of your favorite snacks to munch on during the flight.
10. Don’t get up during serious turbulence unless you have to
When the pilot gets on the intercom to tell you that you will e experiencing heavy turbulence shortly, don’t get up and walk about the plane. You can end up in someone’s lap or you could injure yourself and others. Remain in your seat until the seatbelt light turns off. Most importantly, don’t open the overhead bins as luggage could slip out and hit someone in the head and not you are liable for any injuries you have caused that passenger.
11. Invest in some high-quality flight accessories
Whether you are looking for noise-cancelling headphones, eye masks, or neck pillows this is not an area where you want to go cheap. Cheap neck pillows can cause sore neck and no one wants that. Make sure you test out a bunch of neck pillows before you buy one. Maybe you can’t stand all the noise you hear on a plane and want to cancel it all out for optimum sleep. Invest in some high-quality noise cancelling headphones. It will be a game-changer.
12. Bring wet wipes
Even though we are often told that planes are sanitized, I have heard that they don’t clean the seats and trays as often as they claim. I always make sure to wipe down the tray and around the movie screen, as well as, my seat. This just ensures that everything you are touching has been properly cleaned and sanitized.