There are many reasons for you to travel; it could be for a vacation away from the stresses of everyday life, it could be to visit friends or relatives who are residing in foreign countries, it could be to explore and experience new adventures or it could also be for work-related purposes.
No matter what your purpose for travelling to other countries might be, we all want a great start and end to our trips. It might just be a few hours, but hey: that few hours can make or break your trip, especially if you’re one who would get angry for a few days over a small matter #justsaying
Read on to find out the 10 tips that will make the flight an enjoyable and comfortable experience for you. Some of them are common sense, though, but with the Internet, it’s kinda hard to see that most people have common sense.
Always try to be on time.
It can be incredibly stressful if you are in danger of missing your flight. If your flight is at 2:00 p.m., tell the world that it’s at 12:00 p.m. And of course, tell yourself that, too. It helps a lot.
Plan your schedule and flight in carefully leaving an adequate amount of leeway in case of a flight delay.
Flight delays have been a bane of travellers and insurance companies alike, and yet it is a part of the travel experience. In order to not get too worked up over flight delays, plan your trip well and ensure that even if a flight delay was to occur, you will not miss out on anything important such as not being able to go back to work on time. And do remember to get your travel insurance – it helps if you’re struck in a foreign airport during transit.
Always try to go for an upgrade
The difference between business class and economy class during a flight is huge in terms of space, the amount of disturbance, noise level and foot traffic. There is a combination of tactics which you can use to increase your chances to obtain a free upgrade if you are not willing or unable to use cash or flight mileage to exchange for an upgrade. Always dress neatly, be polite when requesting, fly with the same airline regularly, and try to seem taller when at the check-in counter. You can also volunteer to give up your seat for various altruistic reasons or volunteer to be bumped on an overbooked flight.
Of course, this won’t work if you’re travelling via a budget airline.
Bring lesser carry-on items.
With the charges levied on checked baggage, travellers are inspired to bring more carry-on items onto the flight in order to save on the charges. This is inadvisable as anything that is occupying the area under the seat means less leg room which can prove uncomfortable and cramped for your legs. And we won’t want to start on the quarrels when you take too much space in the top compartment.
Bring something to occupy yourself.
It can get incredibly boring on flights and the novelty of being on an aeroplane usually wears off after the plane has been in the air for a while. Airlines (non-budget, of course) offer in-flight movies and entertainment systems but these are usually available at extra charges.
If you are trying to save on your air travel fees in order to spend more at your destination, you can bring your own books or your own device filled with hours upon hours of movies and games. As there could be no Wifi in the plane, do download your movie (you can do that with Netflix) before you board the plane.
Take a snooze.
Bring a sleep kit along with you onto the plane; a sleep kit can contain an inflatable neck pillow, eye masks, ear plugs or noise cancelling headphones and a warm and fluffy blanket. Depending on the seat you are assigned and the noise level in the cabin, these items could prove essential for getting a good sleep. Trust me, time will pass fast when you’re in dreamland.
Drink adequate water during the flight.
The air in the cabin is not dehumidified and it will lead to you feeling parched during the flight. You will experience chapped lips, drying out of nasal passages, papery skin and sometimes blood clots. Drink as much water in the gate holding area which you can hold comfortably for an hour and keep drinking water every hour or two during your flight. Avoid alcohol, soda or coffee as these will leave you dehydrated. If you feel that buying mineral water in the plane is a waste of money, bring your own reusable bottle of water along – you can fill that up when you’re in the waiting area, which usually has a water cooler.
Choose your seats carefully
Some seats might have less leg room (particularly seats near big exit doors), high human traffic (such as the seats near the toilet which will have people constantly traipsing to and from) or seats that will require you to let people pass by (aisle seats) or seats in which you are trapped by sleeping travelers (window seats).
There’s no best seats, just a seat that you prefer. For example, if you intend to sleep, avoid the aisle seats; you won’t want to wake up every hour if you sit with someone with a small bladder.
Stand or stretch your body occasionally during the flight
Staying in your seat can lead to spinal compression which can be incredibly painful. You can go to the toilet or simply stand up to stretch. No one would judge, because everyone is usually occupied with their own stuff.
Best sitting position
The optimal position to sit in is at 135 degrees and always places a pillow between your lower back and the seat to avoid spinal compression.
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This article was first published on goodyfeed.com in 2015 and revised on 12 July 2017.
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