Travelling and seeing the world is obviously something that is amazing to be able to do, but living in Australia it often requires a rather lengthy, not-so-fun flight (or two!) to get your holiday started. Luckily there are a few things you can pop in your carry on to improve your flying experience & help you arrive feeling fresher. These are my long haul flight essentials, and I’d love to hear your suggestions too!
To Aid With Sleeping
Sleeping in economy is not the easiest thing to attempt, but it can be made a whole lot more comfortable with the addition of a neck pillow. Go for an inflatable option with a removable cover to reduce the space it will take in your bag and allow you to throw the cover in the washing when needed. It really does make a world of difference!
Similarly useful for sleeping, an eye mask is an excellent addition to your carry on luggage. It will block out light from the people around you and at least make sleeping a possibility!
The last item in your sleeping kit should be a pair of ear plugs, so no matter how loud the person next to you snores, or what music they might be listening to, you can block it all out and dream your flight away!
To Make You Comfortable
Socks & Slippers
The best shoes for long haul flights are ones that you can easily slip on and off, so a pair of warm socks is also a must. Planes can be very cold so keeping your toes warm is very important! If you have a small foldable pair of slippers then they are useful as well to avoid needing to put your shoes back on for trips to the bathroom or getting up to stretch your legs.
Cardigan or Scarf
You want to make sure you’re both warm and comfortable for a long haul flight, so a long-line cardigan or a large blanket style scarf are an essential part of my long haul flight kit. Keep yourself extra cosy and you’ll arrive at your destination in a much happier frame of mind!
Moisturiser, Hand Cream & Lip Balm
Flying is incredibly drying for your skin so a little kit of moisturiser, hand cream and lip balm are key to arriving feeling refreshed and looking awake. Apply all of the above liberally throughout the flight, but remember to take small tubes of each to be within the carry on luggage restrictions.
To Keep You Entertained
Headphones & Adapter
Airline headphones are never all that great, so it’s best to pop your own in your carry-on instead. It’s also useful to get a headphone adapter as you can’t plug your own headphones in on all planes. I picked my adapter up from JB Hi-Fi for about $6, so now it just lives with my travel stuff, ready if I need it!
iPad or Kindle
These days planes come with a whole lot of entertainment but there is still a lot of waiting around between flights so an iPad or Kindle loaded with books and movies is key to staying entertained. I also keep a backlog of podcasts on my phone before any long haul flight so that I am sure to have something I love to listen to, as sometimes no matter how many movies or tv shows are available on the flight nothing takes my fancy!
Some form of charging device should also be part of your long haul flight essentials kit, either your standard charging cord or a portable battery to ensure you don’t run out of juice before you arrive at your destination. This is also important in case of any flight delays so you can stay connected.
You should always, always have a pen with you for a long haul flight! There are always forms to be filled in and there’s nothing worse than having to wait in a long queue because you didn’t have a pen handy! Black ink is your best option, but blue is usually fine as well. Plus, that way you can do a crossword or sudoku if need be as well!
Staying hydrated is key to arriving feeling still human but if you have to keep asking for those piddly cups of water from the staff then you’ll probably struggle to keep on top of your water intake. Buying a bottle of water is usually an expensive option (and results in a plastic water bottle for the trash) so bring your own bottle instead! Just make sure it is empty when you go through security then fill it up before boarding the plane. This will also mean you’ll have a bottle to use while on holidays, saving you from having to buy water while out and about. I’ve got a stainless steel bottle as it doesn’t weigh much when empty, so it’s perfect for carry on luggage!
I don’t know what it is about flying but I always seem to make a mess with my food, so having tissues is a vital part of my flying kit. Perfect for runny noses, sticky fingers and any number of other messes!
Airplane food is definitely better than it used to be, but throwing in some healthy snacks like nuts, bliss balls and even a homemade wrap will ensure you keep hunger at bay both on the plane and while waiting in the terminal. Just avoid anything that needs refrigeration or that might have an unpleasant smell (please, no tuna!).