Updated: Mar 15
Many teachers find themselves so excited for their journeys ahead. However, one thing stands in their way- having to GET there. If you’re like me and dread the idea of excruciatingly long flights, here are a few tips to survive.
1. Stock up the Kindle
I’d like to start by saying I can’t stand e-readers; to me, there’s nothing like the feel of worn in pages, the smell of an old book or the crisp sound of pages turning. That said, the number of books you’ll probably want to bring will definitely weigh you down so I’d recommend some sort of e-reader that you fill up before you get on the plane.
2. Snacks on Snacks on Snacks
Hit up CVS the day before your flight. Have you seen the prices on the smallest bag of Sour Skittles at Duty Free? Make sure you have all the food you’ll want before the trip, because there’s no worse feeling than watching a flight attendant swipe your credit card for a $300 cheese plate that wouldn’t fill up a mouse.
Most long flights have free movies you can watch, but just in case, throw a few of your favorite movies or tv shows on your laptop. Usually the movie selection is pretty wide, but there’s no harm in bringing along your favorite movie for comfort.
4. Eye Mask
Call me a diva or whatever you’d like, but I have a hard time sleeping if it’s not pitch black, so I always make sure to have my eye mask with me. You can get them basically anywhere, but I do love this one I got off Amazon.
Whether you’re a AirPods person (still have no idea how people don’t lose those on a regular basis) or like me and bought the nicest noise cancelling headphones you could afford (which really aren’t that nice), making sure you’ve packed them is an obvious yet crucial part of your carryon. None one wants to be the guy who has to tell the flight attendants ‘Yes I’d like to purchase a pair of your overpriced and terrible quality headphones please, thanks so much.’
There’s likely a study somewhere out there that talks about levels of dehydration on flights. I know when I don’t drink enough water on a flight I end up with massive headaches, the last thing I’d want when wanting to land and start exploring my new location right away. Just make sure your Hydroflask is empty while you’re going through security, and then fill her on up.
7. Seat Check
If you’re headed on a trip with some friends, no problem as you’ve likely booked seats next to each other. But if you’re headed somewhere in a new group that you don’t know super well, try to sit next to a new friend. A 14 hour flight sounded miserable to me, but I plopped myself into a seat surrounded by people I wanted to get to know, and ended up having some fantastic conversations with people I now call my friends.
8. Sleepy Time
There is no harm in bringing melatonin, Z-quil or any other medications you use to help yourself sleep. It’s unlikely that they’ll keep you asleep more than 8 hours straight, but naps are crucial to getting through that international flight. I highly recommend these-a dope Target find that are tasty and work really well without the gross hungover feeling the next morning that some medicines give you.
9. No Shame in the Comfort Game
Flying can take a lot out of people; the stress and worry of getting to the airport, the fear of turbulence, etc. I’m 25 and I’m not ashamed to admit that I usually bring a stuffed animal on the flight with me. He doesn’t leave my bag but just knowing that goofy giraffe’s face is poking out to look at me makes me feel better. Whatever it is for you-your favorite pillow, stuffed animal, CBD oils or your lucky blanket-bring it. Any small amount of comfort is worth it for a long flight.
The most important thing to remember is that the flight WILL END eventually, and when it does, you’ll be somewhere new and exciting. Until we all manage to learn how to Apparate, we’re going to have to stick to flying, so anyway to make 14 hours in the giant metal bird better is worth it.
What are your tips for surviving long flights? Comment Below!
About Journey to Teach Abroad:
Become a global citizen and discover life TEACHING ABROAD. Journey to Teach Abroad is a teacher training TEFL certification course in Los Angeles that GUARANTEES a teaching job abroad. They also offer Job Placements to amazing schools in Thailand and SouthEast Asia for those who are ready to go!
About our J2 Writer: Shannon Reffein
Shannon, on the left, is currently serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Tanzania. In her free time, she enjoys reading, journaling, photography, watching Game of Thrones (she’s on season 5, shh!) and playing volleyball with the local students, who are infinitely better than she is.