Save your trip with these long-haul flight essentials! Let’s face it – long flights and international travel sucks. If you’re stuck on a plane for an extended period of time, it could leave you tired, dehydrated, uncomfortable, and even hungry.
You can do things to cope with a long-haul flight on the way to your next international destination. The long-haul flight essentials listed below are sure to help you enjoy smooth sailing while on the flight.
Don’t fear the distance between the departure and arrival signs anymore. Come to the airport prepared with these fundamental travel products. There are a lot of ways to stay fresh on a long flight. It’s time to fly smart.
Long Haul Flight Essentials
The real secret to remaining fresh and comfortable on a long flight starts with undergarments. It’s a great idea to carry an extra pair of underwear. Restrooms on planes may not be the best place to change, but it’s a nice thing to have if you have lounge access on a layover or as a backup once you land.
Bombas makes it easy to nail a timeless style with their classic selection of wardrobe staples at an affordable price. They have a huge selection of styles and cuts to suit your personal preference. We love Icebreaker for their wool underwear if you’re after a more technical piece of undergarments.
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Sitting down is terrible for your circulation, so it’s great to try and stand up a number of times on a flight. A nice tight-fitting pair of socks helps push the blood out of your feet to aid with circulation. This is particularly important as you age and your circulation declines.
We’ve learned to love our feet with a good pair of socks. Bombas offers a great selection of travel staples, and we love their socks! The high-quality socks are super comfortable and come in a fun selection of colorways and patterns.
The most amazing thing about Bombas is that an essential item like socks is donated for every item you purchase. So not only do your feet and bodies thank you, but your purchase gives back too.
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An eye mask is especially helpful for catching some sleep on a plane! We often find they’re slow to turn off lights, and there can be a lot of distractions between other screens and reading lights.
These days, many airlines provide them for free, especially if you’re flying business class. However, if you don’t want a cheap one from the airline, consider a nicer one to make your long flight just a little more enjoyable.
Earplugs are a small but useful long-haul flight essential. Airplanes are pretty noisy whether you’re flying in business class or economy. A good pair of earplugs will help you catch some important shut-eye. As a bonus, eye masks and earplugs are great for your destination in case of any pesky lights or noises in the bedroom.
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Many travelers consider the travel pillow essential for any long-haul flight. We’re mixed on the pillows. While we’ve certainly found some winning products, no miracle pillow will guarantee shut-eye on a flight. The biggest negative is that you’re stuck with the burdensome pillow once you arrive at your destination.
If you do want the comforts of a travel pillow, we love the Everlasting Comfort travel pillow. The memory foam pillow has orthopedic raised lobe contouring on both sides for a comfortable rest. The high-density memory foam allows the travel pillow to conform to your neck for optimal comfort as well. Are you ready for the best part about this airline pillow? It has a cell phone pocket so you can always be listening to your music even walking through the terminal.
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This should be a no-brainer, but don’t forget your toothbrush as it’s a long-haul flight essential. We suggest you pack two toothbrushes, our electric toothbrushes, and a backup travel toothbrush when we travel. It’s great to have the travel toothbrush in our carry-on for the plane. This way, we can brush our teeth on the plane.
Once we arrive at the destination, we always have a backup. You never know if you’ll be separated from your checked baggage. You can opt for a cover for your toothbrush or a nifty travel toothbrush that folds in half. The only thing we don’t recommend is those disposable mini-toothbrushes as they’re wasteful and not as effective.
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Small toiletry Kit
It’s great to have a small toiletry kit in your bag for the flight with all your in-flight essentials. Peak Design makes an excellent small wash pouch with a hook to hang in an airplane bathroom.
Items like deodorant, facial wipes, and toothpaste are a welcome way to refresh yourself. Then you’ll want items to nourish, such as chapstick, lotion, and eye drops, as planes are notoriously dry environments.
Lastly, think about some items like cough drops, under-eye cream, or your favorite product. The little things can make a long flight much more enjoyable. Plus, you won’t feel, smell, or look like the walking dead when you finally reach your destination.
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Glasses & Contacts
If you wear glasses or contacts, make sure to carry backups. It’s good to have spare contacts and glasses should your eyes tire. In your toiletry kit for the plane, don’t forget to add a contact case prefilled with some fluid. It allows you to remove your contacts for some shut eye without the contacts sticking to your eye-lids.
Admittedly this isn’t for everyone, but for the eco-friendly, budget, health-conscious, hungry, or family travelers, it’s a great idea to have some food accessories. Humangear makes the small GoBite Kit which is great as it provides a lightweight cutlery set. You can finish your set out with a collapsible water GoCup to help cut down on the waste.
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Dehydration is one of the travelers’ most common challenges on long-haul flights. Airplanes are dry environments, and very easy to get dehydrated, which compounds the effects of jet lag. We suggest you carry a travel water bottle with you on flights. It’s a no-brainer long-haul flight essential.
A water bottle also helps reduce plastic waste instead of using the disposable plastic cups airlines like to use on their flights. Ask the flight attendant to fill your water bottle back up if you need a refill. Another great flight tip is to pick an aisle seat so you can make frequent bathroom trips without fear of drinking too much.
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Your shoe choice depends upon your destination. It’s best to pick a shoe that is comfortable and easy to slip on and off. We’ve come to love Allbirds TreeRunners as they’re easy to slip on and off for security and on the plane.
Some may shun it, but taking your shoes off on a long-haul flight is more comfortable and, like the socks, aids in circulation. We have a post about our favorite shoes for travel if you’re shopping.
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Noise Canceling Headphones
Almost all international flights have entertainment systems on board, but the headphones are often lackluster. It’s best to travel with a decent pair of noise-canceling headphones to save your ears.
They’re great for entertainment with long layovers. These headphones by Sennheiser may not be the best in the pack, but they’re affordable and will sound great to the average ear. For a bit more, the Sony WH-1000X are some of the best headphones available and will leave you grinning from ear to ear.
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It’s a great idea to bring your own entertainment even though almost all long-haul flights have in-flight entertainment. The systems often have a limited number of shows and movies, so your own entertainment is great. A digital tablet like an iPad or Amazon Kindle Fire is a great way to bring your favorite shows onboard.
If you’re tired of a digital screen, carry on a book or e-reader to finally spend time reading. While you’re covering your entertainment, download podcasts and music so you can rest your eyes.
Journal & Pen
Keeping a journal of your travels is timeless. It helps one digest the information they receive each day and has proven mental health benefits. Moleskin’s line of journals is classic, well made, and stylish. Sometimes the flight gives you time to think, and it’s the perfect time to write down your thoughts.
Most importantly, don’t forget a pen to write in your journal and fill out custom declaration forms before arrival. Even if you don’t have a journal you should definitely have something to write with on the plane.
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Unless you’re flying a business class, airplane food is disappointing. It also lacks calories and nutrition, so we suggest you board the plane with some food. Good snacks for the plane include any fresh fruit or vegetables, protein bars, dried fruit, and nuts. If it’s a really long flight, order take away in the terminal.
More Tips For Long Haul Flights
You will likely need an adaptor for your electronics when you travel internationally on most long-haul flights. We always keep one handy in our carry-on bags. That way, we can charge electronics on arrival or at the airport. (Or even worse, not getting our checked bags.)
We recommend one that can handle a multitude of ports, as you never know if you get stuck on a connection. Check out this adapter which is good for most of the world.
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Travel with a power bank to make ensure your phone never dies. It’s less necessary these days as most airlines provide entertainment systems with USB ports to charge small devices. Anker makes reliable power banks, and they serve as a great backup to charge your device.
It’s a good idea to ensure your phone remains charged before you land at your destination. As we store almost all of our reservations on the phone these days, you’ll likely need the device when you land. Our phone is our GPS which is super important if you have plans to rent a car.
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Not everything can be charged from a power bank, which is limited to the number of charges. Anytime you check your bag, it’s a good idea to carry any necessary charging cables or USB ports to charge your electronics.
Hand Sanitizer & wipes
After the pandemic, everyone is a lot more conscious of sanitization. While the virus does not spread on surfaces, it’s still nice to have hand sanitizer. There are a ton of shared surfaces when you travel, so it’s nice to clean your hands.
While you’re at it, wipe down your armrest and anywhere else you’ll be touching on your flight.
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