It’s always fun to travel during the Christmas holidays, especially if you decide to fly overseas to a different country, like Israel or Bangkok, Thailand. But getting there can be a hassle. If you are intimidated by the potentially long plane rides, today is your lucky day. Here are some tips on how to prepare for plane rides so your trip is comfortable and entertaining.
How to Prepare for Plane Rides (Especially the Really Long Ones):
Dress Comfortably in Layers
As an international student from Seoul, Korea, I air travel for roughly 16 hours about four times a year. It takes me 24 hours, including layovers and other forms of transportation, to get home. Trust me–you do not want to wear your favorite skinny jeans or those brand new shoes that have not been broken in yet. Leggings or yoga pants, a long sleeved shirt, and comfortable sneakers make up my go-to outfit for long distance flights. Be sure to layer with a cardigan or a sweater since planes can get pretty cold, but you want clothes you can take off in case it gets too warm.
Hair Ties Are a Must
Plane cabins are dry. The static from the seats and the complimentary pillow and blankets will make your hair defy gravity. If you have long hair, I would highly recommend two hair ties to tie your hair into pigtails. Pigtails or braids, from experience, are more convenient than ponytails when I want to lean my head back in my chair. If you have baby hairs to control as well, a sports headband may be useful.
Carry Around a Mask
Did I mention that plane cabins are really dry? In one of my previous articles, I mention wearing disposable masks as a way to prevent getting sick. The air is dry and chilly because the cabins are ventilated in order to dilute contaminants and bacteria that comes from having tens, sometimes hundreds of people crowded together in a small area. This also means that your throat may become very dry and irritated. Having a mask will not only help maintain moisture around your mouth, but it will also help block any airborne bacteria that may be floating around.
Bring Your Charger
Nowadays, all the planes I travel in tend to have USB ports for phone chargers. Bring your charger along to charge during your plane ride so your phone will have full battery once you arrive at your destination. The worst thing is being in a foreign country with low battery, especially if you may need to use GPS applications to find your way around. If you’re lucky, some plane models even have power outlets to charge your laptop (if you’re bringing one along).
Download Everything On Your Laptop In Advance
Speaking of laptops, you’re going to have to keep yours (and your phone) on airplane mode. That means no WiFi and no service for the next several hours (darn). If you have an online book to read, download a PDF. If you have online texts, either download the files onto your laptop, or leave the tabs open in your browser, fully loaded. In case your plane does not have individual video screens (or you’ve seen all the movies offered), download a movie or two to entertain yourself for at least a couple hours.
Bring a Book
If you prefer to be more old school, a book is also a great choice. I personally carry around everything: my phone, laptop, a book, and even a journal and my pencil case, in case I am struck by inspiration mid-flight to write something creative (you don’t have to go this far).
Carry Your Toiletries
On longer plane rides, your airline will probably give you a bag of disposable toiletries, usually a plastic toothbrush, a tiny tube of toothpaste, and a pair of slippers. If you’re riding first or business class, you may even get some more luxurious items, like lip balm, facial cream, and mist. Regardless of airline classes, I like to carry around my own toothbrush, since the disposable ones sometimes make my gums bleed (they’re not the best quality). I also bring along face wash, lotion, and lip balm, so I can freshen up every now and then. Finally, since I wear contacts, I carry around a contacts case pre-filled with saline solution, along with my glasses.