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Long Flight Tips

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A lot of us have been there. We’ve been on that almost unbearablly long flight when 30 passing minutes seems to take 3 hours. Every little annoyance can seem amplified to present themselves like long fingernails on a chalkboard. You pull out your trusty Ipod and give that a try, but after 3-4 songs, you are counting the seconds as you watch each song pass by on that little lit up screen.

All you have in mind is getting to your final destination. The thought of finally being able to lay down a bed, beach or boogie board is your top priority. Free of crying babies, smelly feet or your neighbor in the window seat hogging the view of the horizon.

But there is hope! Below I have compiled a list of things you can do to keep your peace of mind and your sanity. Next time you feel yourself getting anxious in that plane seat, try these methods out!

  1. Try getting up and walking around. Believe it or not, not doing this will take a toll on your mood. Yes, humans have the ability to sit for extended periods of time, but your legs will hate you for not using them after a while. I’m not saying you need to walk a marathon, but actually doing something instead of sitting will help mix up the monotony.
  2. Think games like Sudoku, Crosswords and Word-Find are overrated? Keeping your mind engaged is one of the best ways to pass the time. Don’t stick to one of these for too long, but instead juggle between your favorite games to spice it up. If you have trouble enjoying these activities, just play Tetris. Everyone loves Tetris.
  3. Audio books. Or, just regular books. But audio books are quite lovely (unless the narrator has a voice you can’t stand, which happens a lot for me). It’s nice to have someone read to you. Plus this way, you can close your eyes and hopefully drift off a bit.
  4. Speaking of drifting off (which we recommend), DO NOT check your watch, phone, etc constantly after waking up. You may become disappointed with how much time has passed. This will decrease your level of patience and become more frustrating. We’ve all experienced what we felt was a couple hours of napping, which ended up being only 17 minutes. Incredibly frustrating when on a plane.
  5. If you have a laptop (or portable DVD player), purchase seasons of TV series that you’ve heard are somewhat addicting. I know that I’ve accidentally lost track of entire days binging on Grey’s Anatomy or Lost (ok, maybe not that accidental). It’s a great way to pass the time.
  6. I’ve heard that noise cancelling headphones are wonderful for planes. While I have never tried these out myself as a source of “plane comfort”, I can easily relish over the thought of not hearing the crying babies, sneezing, coughing, chewing, airflow, jet engines, etc. Not so sure they’d help pass the time, but if you have them, I think bringing them would be a smart decision.
  7. Child at heart? Bring Lego blocks in your carry on! If you’re neighbor is friendly enough, have building contests.
  8. If you’re feeling studious, download a lecture on something that you’ve always wanted to learn. There are different websites that allow you to download lots of different lectures for free! Why not take advantage?
  9. A little travel tip that I’ve heard…bring something for the flight attendants to enjoy. Candy/food usually works the best. This way (if they’re nice) they will remember you and making “friends” with the attendants can’t do anything but help you. “Oh, I see you’re running low on your diet Pepsi! Let me go get you another!” This is music to my ears.
  10. When all else fails, talk to your neighbor. This one can turn out really well, or could fail miserably. But I think that it’s fun learning things about people I’ve flown with. I’ve sat next to a world-class heart surgeon, a self-made millionaire, a priest and a trapeze artist! I would have never found those things out had I not asked.

Remember, it will eventually end. Just try and keep your head up, unless you’re feeling sleepy. When all else fails, sleep reigns as king. Just make sure you know where to put your head. You don’t want to be that person that accidentally uses your neighbors shoulder. Happy travels!

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