How to Prepare for a Long Fight

Photograph taken at Mont Saint-Michel in Normandy, France.

Long flights can be boring. Here’s some tips to prepare for a long flight. Most of the things on this list could also help with boredom in general! I do some of these things before a long road trip or a chemotherapy treatment. Like most of my posts, utilize it in what best suits you!




So, you have your plane ticket purchased to go to your dream destination. You calculate the time it’s going to take to get to your destination…uh oh. It’s going to be a long flight, but, not to worry. Here are a few things I do to prepare for my flights.




Create a Legit Playlist




            I use Spotify when creating my playlists for flights. Spotify allows you download your playlist, so you can access it offline and save battery. I recommend starting your playlist and download it at least a day in advance. Once, I started downloading my playlist 30 minutes before my flight, and it made me more stressed than I already was! If you are going on a 6 hour or more flight, I recommend around 300 songs on your playlist. If you don’t have enough songs on your playlist, there is a good chance you are going to hate those songs by the end of your trip. However, too many songs could cause you to skip songs more than listening to them.


            Another encouragement is to tailor it to your trip. I love listening to my Africa playlist because it reminds me of the fun times I had in Rwanda.




Plan Your Outfit




            There are two things you need to plan for your outfit: comfort and warmth. You get the privilege of spending way too many hours in this outfit, so make it comfortable. Some people say you should look a certain way on a plane. I say, wear what you want to wear, you probably won’t see most of those people again. Comfort should include layers for warmth. I always bring a jacket so that I could regulate my temperature better.


            Don’t forget (because I have so many times) this outfit becomes an outfit on your trip. So, when you are packing, include your plane outfit with your other outfits. Pro tip: make sure the layers you are bringing on the plane work with other outfits you are bringing in your suitcase. Layers become your best friend for long trips!




Snacks, Snacks, Snacks.




            I don’t know if anyone’s told you, but calories don’t count on a plane. Okay, this might not be a hundred percent true, but treat yourself. I love getting cashews, granola bars, and chocolate treats. Granola bars also come in handy throughout your trip to as a snack. Sometimes you get so caught up in exploring that you forget to eat. I haven’t had this happen to me personally, but I have heard stories.




Download Movies




            A lot of planes for long flights have movies already offered. I suggest watching those first. This summer, I flew from Rwanda to Houston with a connecting fight in Amsterdam. I started the movie Fathers and Daughters at the end of the first flight with my friend, and the movie didn’t show up on the second flight! I waited a month to finish the last fifteen minutes. All that to say, browse the movies when you get on the flight, and if you don’t like what you see, it is nice to have a few movies already downloaded for backup.




Add a Few Free Game Apps




            I tend to fill my time playing Solitaire or Sudoku on my phone while listening to music. Before your flight, I suggest adding a few games that work offline. Don’t add too many games because it might slow down your phone. I also like to use some flight time to learn about new apps.


            If you are a blogger, I recommend brainstorming what you’re going to write about throughout the trip and maybe write a few blogs to have on hand. You can never have too many saved blog posts!  








            Hydrate before you dydrate. Going to Italy, I was not aware of importance of hydration. When I didn’t drink water, my feet swelled to about twice the size. This is a product of dehydration (my body decided to retain water in my stubby toes) and not moving around on the plane. Get up at least every 2 hours and move around, but the more you move, the better you will feel! Even though you are on vacation, your health is still important. I suggest bringing an empty water bottle with filter in your carry on. When you get through all of security, you can fill it up at your gate.




Sanitizers and Wipes




            While we are on a roll with health, don’t get sick. Airplanes have a lot germs, so bring wipes to wipe down your seat tray and remote. You might look like a germaphobe, but you won’t be getting sick. Also, who cares what people think! Hand sanitizer is a must, too! Going throughout the airport you touch a lot of things, and you don’t know who and how many people touched it. Tip: take Emergen-e or other vitamin C supplements to help prevent getting sick as well.




Sleeping Masks, Pillows, and Blankets




            Find what makes you comfortable, and know when is the best time to sleep. Don’t just sleep on the flight when you are tired. This could cause bad jet lag. Tip: Sleep when the place you are going is sleeping, and for sure stay awake when they are awake.


            Sleeping masks, pillows, and blankets can help make you plane flight more comfortable. Most planes will give you a blanket on your flight, so bringing a blanket would be your preference. I personally don’t bring a blanket anymore because it saves a lot of space and hassle.  




Invest in Headphones that Work for You




            Don’t forget headphones! Headphones are going to be more expensive in the airport than at a place like Do research and weigh the benefits of different aspects such as: noise-cancelling, wireless, colors, etc. I would pause before buying the least expensive headphones before your flight. I have bought headphones for around $10, and no matter the brand, they end up physically breaking or just stop working. However, on the flip side, an expensive pair of headphones aren’t guaranteed to have everything you want. When I researched headphones, I found that some of the more expensive headphones lack what I wanted. If you find yourself traveling often, headphones can make or break your experience on your flight. Don’t underestimate this decision like I did!  




Charge while You are Waiting to Board




            Don’t forget to charge your electronics before you get on a plane! Business class and newer planes usually have outlets (mostly in the form of a USB port). However, it’s better to be as prepared as possible before getting on the plane.




Make Sure You Know Where Your Valuables Are Always




            If you are bringing valuables on the plane, consider a lock for your carry-on luggage. On top of having locks on your luggage, know where your valuables are in your luggage. I always designate a specific pocket in my carry-on that is for my passport. Because of this, I know where it is and can access it quickly.