If you’re crossing the ocean soon to take your next holiday somewhere, whether it’s the UK or Madagascar you’re still going to have to sit in a plane for a long time. We’ve compiled our top 10 tips for surviving long flights. 

Crowded flight

Tip 1. Get a neck pillow

You know those pillows you probably thought were just for little old ladies? Well, those ladies are onto something! You can choose between bean-based ones or opt for an inflatable version to save space in your luggage. It will support your next while you’re sleeping on the flight so you don’t fall asleep on the stranger next to you and should hopefully keep your neck up, so you don’t drool on yourself accidentally (we’ve all been there).

Tip 2. Hydrate

This one is critical. Hydration is key to reducing jet lag and avoiding Deep Vein Thrombosis. Make sure you bring a water bottle to make it a little easier - fill it up at the airport once you’re through security.

Tip 3. Sleep (eye mask)

Remember all those times you wished you could have just slept all day? Well good news now is the time. Relax, bring an eye mask to block out the light, and snooze away.

Tip 4. Get an e-reader or tablet

Books can be bulky to bring with you, and you might get that one-handed book-holders hand cramp. Grab a Kindle or a tablet if you have one and load a few books (and movies) before you leave home.

Tip 5. Noise cancelling headphones

These will become your best friend on a long flight. Unfortunately, you’ll likely be exposed to a snorer or a crying baby, so it’s good to block them out and listen to the sweet sounds of Enya or heavy metal to drown them out.

Tip 6. Dress comfy

We can’t stress this enough. Leave the heels in your checked baggage. Those jeans that are kind of tight around the waist? Forget them. Keep the tie in your carry-on if you’re on a business trip, you can always pop it on later. Opt for loose, soft, warm clothing. Feel free to layer so you can adjust your temperature as you go.

Tip 7. Charge your devices

Imagine if 10 minutes into your 15-hour flight you lose battery power, and you’re forced to sleep or listen to the resident chatty person who overshares. No one wants that! Make sure you’ve charged all of your devices and switched them into a battery-saving mode if it’s available before you leave home.

Tip 8. Stretch and walk

If you sit in the same spot for more than an hour, your muscles and joints are probably going to feel a little stiff and sore. Make sure you go for a walk around the cabin every few hours - you can work it in with your toilet trips. Stretches are a great way to move those muscles and joints without moving from your seat as well. Stretches and movement will also help with avoiding Deep Vein Thrombosis. 

Tip 9. Avoid alcohol, soft drinks and coffee

We know this is a hard one, especially with most flights providing complimentary beverages, but alcohol is just going to make you need to go to the toilet more too. Alcohol, soft drinks and coffee are not your friends when it comes to avoiding jet lag.

Tip 10. Take a toothbrush and deodorant

It’s amazing how fresh you can feel with clean teeth and a quick refresh of your deodorant. Make sure you pack these essentials (and maybe a change of clothes) for when you need to freshen up!


Limits, exclusions and conditions apply. This is general advice only. We do not provide any advice based on any consideration of your objectives, financial situation or needs. Consider the Combined PDS/FSG (available www.covermore.co.nz) before deciding about this insurance.