You’ve made it! You trekked all the way to your local airport, checked-in to your flight, navigated security and waited patiently for your plane to arrive at the departure gate. Sitting in your seat is an accomplishment on its own, now what? The journey has just begun and you still have a long way to go before arriving at your final destination. Long-haul flights are an exhausting endeavor to think about, let alone endure. Here are a few tips to pass the time, stay entertained, and keep you calm cool and collected at cruising altitude.

If you’re traveling on an international flight that’s over 7 hours, it’s important to realize what you’re wearing to the airport will be the clothes you stay in for the duration of your flight. Realize the key to remaining in your element, in the skies, is to dress comfortably. Dressing in cozy clothes can go a long way. If you’re traveling for leisure, dress yourself in soft fabrics like cotton this will make your trip exponentially better and you won’t be uncomfortable in the tight jeans you look so good in. I am the type of person to overheat wherever I am. I am also that type of person to take the three A/C jets overhead and point them all in my direction (yes, I am selfish).  Not only being too warm makes me uncomfortable, but it makes me look like I’ve just taken a 1 hour spin class. Definitely not a look, or smell I want to have.  However, no fear my sweaty comrades, there IS hope! Try to dress in very light and breathable fabrics, like your favorite pair of pajamas. I’ve made the mistake of wearing heavy sweatpants and sweatshirts on a flight before, and let me tell you, it wasn’t pretty. So, rock those pajamas to the airport, who cares what you look like? You’re going on vacation!  For those of you traveling for business, pack a pair of light pajamas in your carry on. If you’re feeling a little crazy, throw some slippers in there too. Trust me, you won’t regret it.  Change back in to your business suit before landing and you won’t look disheveled.

Now you’re calm and cool, what’s next? Entertainment. Don’t underestimate the power of a carry on. Think of it as your own airline “survival pack.” Everyone has different interests so pack anything you love to do to occupy your time. Throw a good book, newspaper, or puzzle books in there for some fun and easy entertainment on your flight.  I never find myself having time to sit down and read a book when I’m home so every time I travel this is one of the first things I pack. When can you get 7+ interrupted hours to get lost in a book with the hustle and bustle of everyday life?

Let’s be honest, reading is not for everyone. Folks, we are in the 21st century! We are lucky enough to have all forms of portable technology at our disposal. Before getting to the airport, charge up your phones, tablets, laptops or whatever gizmo you use.  If you have a portable charger, charge that too! We are all familiar with the battle for the outlets at the airport, so save yourself the fight and don’t show up to the airport with dead devices.

Here’s a pro-tip for you (for those not living under a rock) if you have a subscription to the streaming service Netflix, you can save movies and TV shows to your laptop, tablet, or iPhone to view offline. Did I just blow your mind? I hope so. Unfortunately, not all Netflix titles are available for offline viewing, but check out their list and maybe you’ll see something that catches your eye. Linked below is a How-to guide to how to download movies and TV shows for offline viewing.

Maybe technology isn’t your forte, maybe you’re not a big reader, nor can I promise that I have the answer for you, BUT maybe you’re someone who likes to pass the time by eating. Yeah, you might be on a low-cal no soy vegan paleo diet (or whatever the new fad diet is these days), but flights are the best time to enjoy your favorite snacks. For a list of all items you’re able to take on an airplane, check the list at the link below. If food isn’t your “thing,” then drink up (only if you’re over 21). Fun fact, have you ever wondered why your bloody Mary tastes much better at 30,000 feet than on the ground? Well, this has to do with the way flying affects our pallet. In the air, artificial cabin pressure alters the way we taste. The dry atmosphere inside the plan’s cabin reduces our sense of smell which limits our ability to taste. Even the white-noise from the jets on the airplane makes food taste less-sweet! However, out of our five taste sensations-sweet, bitter, sour, salty and umami-the only sensation unaffected by flight is the savory taste sensation of umami. So, if you were wondering, that’s why Bloody Mary tastes o-so good, it’s because acidity of tomato juice is limited while that savory flavor remains.

I wish you luck on your experiences in the sky and at the airport.  Hope this guide helps you stay occupied and cozy for the long haul ahead.






How to Download Titles for Offline Viewing:


Chart of Foods that you Can Bring Through Airport Security:


Source: Why Your Bloody Mary Tastes Better on A Plane