US: Seven Things I Learned in my First Long Haul Flight

The longest airplane flight I had till March, 2017 was 7hours, 15min Singapore-Dubai flight during my Holy Land tour in 2016. So my mind cannot comprehend how a person can stay inside an aircraft for more than 10 hours until I am left without choice as I have to travel to United States April this year. We have option for a direct flight from Singapore to San Francisco via Singapore Airlines but my heart was anxious imagining I will be up the air for 15 long hours. Instead we took Cathay Airlines with connecting flight from Singapore to Hong Kong(3 hours, 33 mins) then finally Hong Kong to San Francisco(12 hours, 45 mins). It may took us two more hours to reach San Francisco but at least I get to step my feet on the ground in between flights.

Flying up in the air for extended amount of time requires both physical and psychological preparations. At least for me, as I am not like the gifted travellers who can easily sleep through the entire flight, I am wide awake for the most of it. I do strive to have a pleasant and restful journey up there, but its a learning process. Here are some of the things I want to share with you on my first long-haul flight experience this year.

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1. Dress for comfort more than fashion.
This is not the time to impress as the clothes you're wearing will be your companion for the next 15 hours in an economy seat and you do want a comfortable trip. Choose breathable fabrics, loose attire like cotton t-shirts and drape pants. Heels are definitely a no no, you want comfy flats or flip flops. Reserve your contact lenses when you land, it's uncomfortable to wear them as your eyes tends to be dry during long flight.

2. Stay hydrated and moisturise.
Hydrate yourself night before the flight. Being inside an enclosed cabin for long hours without fresh air and little amount of oxygen easily dries your skin. It is essential to know the right skincare regime that will keep your skin fresh and glowing by the time you reach your destination.

3. Select the best seats for you.
If you're the kind of passenger who goes to toilet every now and then(like me), strategically select aisle seats which are accessible to the toilets. If you're a sleepy-head-kind-of-passenger, window seats will be the best choice.

4. Avoid caffeine and alcohol.
Coffee and soft drinks which both contain caffeine are diuretic which means it increases the amount of urine produced in your body causing you to visit the toilet often and prevents good sleep.

5. Keep your blood flowing by occasionally moving.
Stretch you arms and legs every now and then, stand or walk if you need to.

6. Bring necessities with you.
Pen is a must when travelling. Have yourself an eye mask, noise cancelling ear plugs and travel pillow to promote sleep environment. Place your meds and supplements in your hand-carry in case you'll need them.

7. Pack your entertainment
Long flights tends to be boring as you are contained in a limited space. Make sure to bring any gadget that will keep your sanity while flying like book or kindle, your-kind-of-music, your favourite tv series or movies in your mobile phone.


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