How to Survive Long Flights

1. Smart Seat
While some carriers charge a fee for selecting seats in advance, most allow passengers to choose their spots for free inside 24 hours of departure. To make the right choice for you, find out the model of plane you’re flying on, then consult SeatGuru for recommendations of where best to deposit your derrière. While some people find aisle seats have more legroom and make it easier to get up, others may find it annoying to be bumped into by other passengers.

2. Sleep Secrets
Sleeping is the single best way to make plane hours disappear. Give yourself the best chance at shut-eye by bringing earplugs (to drown out babies and snorers), eye masks and inflatable neck pillows, just in case in-flight amenities prove scarce. Slumber aids such as melatonin (not lots of alcohol) are also an option, as are sleep-inducing music CDs. Don’t sleep for too long without exercising your legs, though, as you don’t want to risk deep vein thrombosis.

3. Meditate
If you can’t sleep, a conscious trance is the next best thing. Whether it’s using your own guided meditations or an in-flight mindfulness programme newly offered by some carriers, zone out and check into your own relaxing head space.

4. The Right Gear
Yes to comfort, no to cold. Wear stretchy, cosy clothes in natural fibres – leggings, tracksuits, long-sleeve T-shirts, cardigans. Bring socks and an extra sweater too, as planes can get quite nippy. Slip-on shoes will help with swelling feet, and make security checks easier. And scarves can double as pillows that smell comfortably familiar.

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