Friday, June 5, 2015

7 Tips for Surviving a Long-Haul Flight

On our Australia trip, Sean and I flew from Denver all the way to Perth, Australia, which was 10,101 miles away from home. We didn't do it all at once (thank goodness), but we did have on extremely long flight from L.A. to Melbourne, Australia, and then home from Sydney to LAX. I was a little nervous because 1) I'm a nervous flyer and 2) I have flown some long flights, but nothing this long! It was a little intimidating.

As it turned out, the whole process wasn't nearly as bad as I thought it would be. We arrived in Brisbane, our first stop on our trip, not overly disgruntled and only a teeny bit worse for the wear. Here's what I did to make the whole thing much more bearable.

1. Wear the right clothing. This is so important! I wanted to make myself as comfortable as possible without looking like I was wearing exercise gear or loungewear at the airport. I did my hair and makeup as usual in the morning, then I put on my black Lululemon Wunder Unders (similar in petite sizing at Athleta) and a black Power Y tank as my base layer. The built-in bra with soft cups in the tank meant no underwire or other bra hardware that could cause discomfort. On top of the tank, I layered a long, wide-necked tee that came down past my hips, and then I added a blazer in a cozy sweatshirt material. This made it easy to add or subtract layers to adjust to a comfortable temperature.

I didn't really take any pictures at the airport, so I recreated my outfit over the weekend so I could show it to you.

Long-Haul Flight Travel Outfit

Here's little collage I've created for you that shows some of my favorite products and essentials that made my flight a whole lot more comfortable. For most of the items, you can just hover over, click, and it'll take you to the page where you can purchase that item. If you aren't sure where I got something or how to find it, just ask me in the comments and I'll be happy to direct you to where I was able to find it.

2. Pack things you can't afford to lose in your carry-on. For me this means:
  • Medications
  • Jewelry (I wear the most precious pieces on me on the plane)
  • Electronics and chargers, both the plug-in ones and the charging bricks
  • A change of clothes in case you spill something or the airline loses your luggage
  • A bathing suit--same idea as a change of clothes. It's no fun shopping for a bathing suit while you're trying to get into the swing of your vacation.

3. Get your sleep on. The easiest way to get through your long flight is to get as much sleep as you can. It'll stave off both boredom and jet lag! In order to get some quality rest, I make sure to pack the following:
  • Eye mask
  • Cozy socks to keep my feet warm
  • Pashmina to supplement airplane blankets and double as a wrap or scarf during my vacay
  • Travel pillow
  • Sleep aid of choice (Benadryl, Ny-Quil, or Dramamine are over-the-counter options)

4. Bring lots of entertainment. It wasn't possible for me to sleep for 16 hours straight, so I made sure to have plenty of things to do. I loaded about 10 new books onto my Kindle, added some TV shows and movies to my iPad, and made sure I had a good set of headphones that cancelled out ambient noise.

5. Make sure you take healthy snacks and plenty of water with you. Drinking lots of water will keep you hydrated in the dry, recirculated air on a plane. I love my spill-proof CamelBak water bottle and take it everywhere with me. For snacks, I like to bring my own trail mix of raw almonds, peanuts, dried cherries or other fruit, with a few crunchy and sweet things mixed in. It's great for tiding yourself over until they serve you the next meal. I also pack energy and granola bars for a little variety and for ease in snacking later while running around sight-seeing.

6. Beautify on the go. Spending hours upon hours traveling is not really conducive to looking your best. To keep myself looking decent, I make sure to pack travel sizes of my favorite products in my carry-on:
  • Makeup remover wipes--no one wants to sleep with a face full of makeup! These make it easy to wash your face without ever leaving your seat. The lavender and camomile-scented Neutrogena wipes are my favorite.
  • An easy wipe-off or no-rinse mask will help you arrive looking fresh
  • Facial moisturizer to keep skin hydrated
  • Hand cream to combat the drying soap in airport and plane bathrooms
  • A heavy-duty lip balm
  • Dry shampoo (I like this non-aerosol one for travel)
  • Deordorant
  • Portable toothbrushes
  • A makeup essentials kit--I include powder foundation and a small brush, eyeliner, cream blush, and brow gel in mine
  • A compact mirror
  • Comb or brush
  • A small baggie with hair ties, bobby pins, and/or a headband to make hair fixes easy

7. Keep your important documents handy. Most critical rule? Don't lose your passport or other travel documents! I like to place them in a zippered compartment in my purse or in a separate, sealable pouch. You'll need them as soon as you're trying to get on or off the plane, so keep them within arm's reach of your seat.

Hope this list helps you get ready for your next long flight! Happy travels!

x, Tam


  1. I hope your journey was fun, other than the finger crushing event. Yikes.
    I'm a petite mom of three, and actually my family call me Tam too, but I go by Tamara everywhere else.
    It was fun to read your little travel tips. My husband is Aussie and we have wracked up some miles traveling from GA to Australia in our 18 years of marriage.
    I might have to add a dry shampoo to my bag! Good idea! I have to say I have never taken Nyquil along with me. But, I may have assisted one of my toddlers with Benadryl! It is hard to have time to find clothes with 3 kids around these days, so I love to look at blogs and get some ideas and links straight to the source! The beauty items are especially fun!

  2. Love this list! I am packing to go to Thailand soon and was trying to put a good list together for my carry on bag. Your travel outfit is amazing too! Comfy and cute!!

  3. Hi, really useful post!

    i just wanted to say please don't bring peanuts on a plane.
    How do you know if the person next to you is allergic? Or the person 2 rows ahead and is anaphylactic to just the smell of nuts; or the peanuts on your hands could then be on the toilet door handle and then on the hands of some one who is allergic to peanuts? I personally don't want to be the cause of someone having an anaphylactic reaction while we are in flying over the sea and have nowhere to land! ahahaha :) looking forward to the next post!


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