Travel 101: How to Survive Airplane Flights!

Hello, there!

Although I have been in France for almost three weeks now, it is never too late to give some advice on the traveling process! 🙂

Face it: we know how airplane rides can be long and testing, especially if we are taking flights overseas. As an avid traveler, I have many times experienced the grueling journey to places like Europe, Asia, even within the United States.

Granted, I enjoy exploring the destinations once I arrive there; however, it is the flights that I don’t like as much. From the ever-freezing cabin pressures to the screaming babies and annoying patrons to the less-than-stellar airplane food, I am not a huge fan when it comes to flying.

However, this post is not meant for me to complain about my airplane experiences. Instead, I am here to give you the low-down on how to survive your next flight. Or, at least, make the ride more tolerable for you. 😛

Without further ado, here are some tips to get through the long, exhausting flight. Let’s go! 🙂

#1 Know exactly your flight information. Before you even get on the plane, make sure that you are aware of everything that is required of you, in order to make it through the airport and onto your flight. In other words, know your terminal (the place to get dropped off at the airport), where to check in, your gate number(s) to board the airplane, and so forth. Also pay attention to when gates change; otherwise, you might end up missing your flight!

#2 Pack wisely. If you are going on a week-long vacation to, say, the Caribbeans, there is no point in bringing your entire house with you (c’mon, it is only a week!). Most airplanes, if not all, limit you to one carry-on baggage: make sure that you pack all liquids and heavy objects in your suitcase, and be sure to check it in at the check-in counter of the airplane company that you’re flying with. Also be careful not to exceed the weight limit, or else you’ll have to pay extra! Pack your personal belongings (e.g. books, smaller electronics, etc.) in your carry on, and make sure that it will fit either underneath your seat, or in the plane’s overhead compartment.

#3 Dress comfortably. Especially if you will be flying for several hours (typically, six hours or more), it is best to wear something comfortable; that way, you will minimize discomfort while up in the air. For me, I tend to wear sweatpants, a large jacket, and sneakers for all of my flights. No need to break out the skin-tight dress or wear make-up; trust me, we’re all going to look shitty once we get off the plane. 😛

#4 Bring a jacket. Corresponding to #3, make sure that you bring and wear a jacket on board the plane. Temperatures tend to drop quite drastically throughout the flight, especially if it is one that is overseas. Doesn’t help that the cabin always blasts air conditioning everywhere, ugh…Better yet, bring a blanket or take advantage of the ones that some flights offer you. In any case, bundle up!

#5 Eat (but not too much). Airplane food gets a bad rep for being unappetizing, but after having eaten a many flight meals, I can say that it isn’t all that bad. Even if you’re not feeling hungry, it is important to sustain yourself with food, so that you don’t collapse once the plane arrives at your destination. Not saying that you have to eat everything that the flight attendants offer, either, but make sure that you get at least something in your system. If anything, it’s okay to pack your own food for the journey, especially if you hate airplane food. Bon appetit!

#6 Remember to sleep. Granted, it is all too tempting to stay up during the whole flight watching movie after movie or playing the video games on the entertainment screen. Especially when you’re going overseas and your circadian rhythm gets messed up, because of time-zone differences. Make an effort to close your eyes and get a couple of hours of sleep. If you need to, a sleeping mask is a good item to have on hand. 🙂 

#7 Refresh yourself. During bathroom breaks and just when you’re about to land, freshen up in the restrooms. Wash off that tired, just-had-a-twelve-hour-flight look from your face, as well as wake yourself up in preparation for the onset of *possible* hectic layovers, long lines at immigration checkpoint, and the wait for your luggage at the carousel.

…and with that, I hope these tips will make your next airplane flight just a bit more unbearable. Just a bit. 😉 Take care!

— The Finicky Cynic

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