Top Tips for Long Flights, From Our Discoverers

Tips & Tricks

Tips & Tricks According to Our Readers Travel Tips Flights Evergreen Gallery

Got a long flight coming up? Worried about how you're going to deal with an extended time in the air? We asked our Discoverers for their top travel tips for a long flight and they didn't disappoint! Whether your next flight is five hours or fifteen, here are a few clever tricks to try out while you're in the air.

Maintain a Schedule


"Break everything up into segments. When you’re eating, only eat. Don’t watch a movie, too. So, for example, just read for an hour. Then watch a movie for 2 hours. The main meal could take an hour. Close your eyes. Chat with your neighbor, etc. Just break everything into smaller parts." - Cindy W.

Work Out the Kinks

"Bring a small massage ball in your carry-on. Sitting a long time exacerbates my back and hip pain, but sitting on the ball and moving it between sore spots helps." - Claire S.

Feel Fresh

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"Bring your own face wipes or washcloth and toothbrush. You’ll feel better if you sleep with a clean face and mouth." - Rita G.

Smell the Lavender

"Lavender scented baby powder!  Lavender aromatherapy promotes calming and soothing properties that helps with me reduce stress; the baby powder leaves my skin feeling clean, soft and smooth from hours of flying, creating my own 'spa'." - Candace G.

Get Comfy

"A gel cushion, specifically, the one made by the Purple mattress folks. Without it, the airline seats manage to press against the wrong spot on the back of my thighs and I am apt to cramp so badly that I can't even walk when I get up. The gel cushion also works great on my office chair when I am not traveling." - Yvonne H.

Keep Moving


"Get up and walk up and down the aisle frequently.  You will  frequently have to dodge arms and legs overflowing into the aisle, especially when a lot of people are sleeping but it is worth it.  You will avoid stiffness and muscle cramps as well as deep thrombosis from sitting too long.  Standing and chatting with the cabin crew helps too. I've walked across the Atlantic, the Pacific, from Amsterdam to South Africa, giving me minor bragging rights with my friends!" - Daniel Y.

Exercise in the Air

"I bring a loop resistance band on a long flight. And every time I go to the bathroom I would do a set of super simple band exercises for hips and shoulders. It helps to circulate the blood and avoid feeling stiff after landing. Those exercises don’t need much space and can be done while waiting in line to use the bathroom." - Marika B.

Don't Watch the Clock


"This may seem too simplistic, but I avoid looking at my watch until they announce we are approaching our destination. The time seems to go by much more quickly." -Claude S.

Cover Up

"I have a 12 x 60 inch scarf that fits in the outside pocket of my carry on. It comes out before I board the plane, and I use it as a blanket, scarf, pillow, whatever is needed at the time. It doubles as an extra blanket for a cool hotel room, extra pillow, scarf for my shoulders when entering churches, or extra cover when the weather turns cold and my jacket is not warm enough. This scarf  has gone on every trip." - Jeannette

Keep the Kids Entertained


"If travelling with small children, take one new toy for every hour in the air. They don’t have to be brand new or big, just things they have never seen before - a little toy car from the thrift store is ideal. Each hour, you can give your child a boredom-fighting gift. We did this with an 18-month old on a flight from UK to Australia and it worked a treat. We didn’t even use all the toys and the journey was spent happily playing (when he was awake)." - Meryl J.

Be Patient

"Patience! Be it weather delays, lost luggage, rude travelers, etc... there are a thousand little things that can make travel challenging. The best advice is to roll with whatever is thrown your way. Why make a long trip any more difficult than it has to be. Only you have control over how you choose to handle the trip." - JoAnn

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