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How to survive long haul flights in Economy class

Updated On 7th May, 2020

Let’s face it, long haul flights in economy class aren’t the comfiest in the world, and upgrading to Business Class just isn’t a realistic option.

Saying that airlines do vary as do aircraft, and I’ve had some pretty enjoyable flights {as flights go}.

The only time though, really, that I can sleep on long haul flights is if I have a window seat, extra cushioning and if I’m super tired.  Otherwise, it’s broken sleep and then a frustrated Mollie. These days I actually request daytime flights, as my time is so much more productive spent working when in the air.

Sometimes the odds are just against us: you find yourself sat between two strangers, and you have what, 10 hours ahead of you to endure?

tips for surviving long haul travel in economy class

So what are my tips for surviving long haul travel in economy class?

1. Portable Charger

This is my number 1 essential and it should be yours if you want to listen to music, watch films or work on your phone when in the sky. You never know which aircraft you are getting; some have full-blown plug sockets, some USB ports and some (like the one I’m writing this post from) have NOTHING.

Shop my Portable Charger here

2. Eye-mask

This has become a staple in any bag of mine when I’m travelling. When shooting through time zones and encountering adventure left, right and centre, you’re going to get tired and jet-lagged. Sometimes the daylight or surroundings won’t correspond with your body clock and you’ll need to sleep (or at least have a nap) in daylight. Hello, eye-mask: the answer to your dreams.

Ladies, this is a free eyelash curly perm (longer the flight – the curlier they will be).

Shop eye masks here

3. Bring an empty water bottle through customs

The key to staying healthy and hydrated is water. Airports can, and do, whack up the price of water, so take an empty bottle/ refillable bottle through with you. A lot of people don’t know they can do this, as obviously you can’t take liquids over 100ml through security. But you can take an empty bottle through. Fill it up at the water fountain or ask nicely at the coffee shop. This saves pennies too.

Shop my new favourite bottle here

4. Take snacks

If you, like me, aren’t a massive fan of aeroplane food, come prepared. Flying long distance almost always leaves me feeling bloated and I don’t want to make this any worse by… eating crap. Take snacks that are going to fill you up with nutrition, and stay on top of your diet when in the air (you have the holiday to indulge).

5. Take peppermint tea bags

This is a personal preference of mine, and another that saves me money (more so on short flights when you have to pay for hot drinks). Peppermint tea cleanses my system when I’m in the air and is something not all airlines will stock… not in economy anyway.

6. Decant some face care into travel size pots

A 9-12 hour flight is pretty much a full day at home, and when you are confined to the space of a plane and surrounded by the germs of hundreds of other travellers, it is the nicest thing to freshen up in the plane toilets and give yourself a new lease of life.

Tip: Don’t take your expensive cleansers to security if they are over 100ml. No amount of fluttering your eyelashes will stop them being thrown in the bin.

7. Take a mini toothbrush and toothpaste

Freshen up that palette and conversation with your new friend in the seat next to you will flow a lot easier 😉

8. Take a pashmina

This is random and people may laugh, but the air conditioning on planes can sometimes be too cold and make me ill. Sometimes it can even be so cold that my throat dries out, it’s painful to breathe (seriously) and I can’t sleep. My solution to this is a pashmina over my face. Why a pashmina? Because the material is so light it doesn’t suffocate me (always good). Why over my face? It filters the air and warms it up slightly before you breathe it in.

It works every time (and also blocks out the light if you forget your eye mask).

9. Lip Balm

The change in climate (even from the departure destination to the plane) can cause my lips to dehydrate. Lip balm is a must!

10. Earphones

Shop my Earphones here

Other tips:

  • Ask the Cabin Crew for extra pillows/ blankets/ eyemasks
  • Take compression socks
  • Drink lots of water
  • Have chewing gum / mints for landing {and to relieve people around you from bad breath} haha!

Have you got any top tips for travelling in economy class? ?

I’d love to know!?

Love as always and happy adventuring,


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How to survive long haul flights in Economy class