Carry-On Bag Essentials for A Long-Haul Flight

Long-haul flights are a test of endurance. Find me someone who actually likes them. Some are worse, much worse, than others, but no matter how good they are you just can’t ignore the inescapable fact that eight hours is just too long to spend on a plane, as for sixteen…So, it’s something to be endured, it’s not jaw grindingly awful like the dentist’s chair or a twenty mile tailback but it needs to be got through. What you pack in your carry-on could make the difference between abject misery and mild restlessness, take heed.

Documents

The most obviously important things to pack and the most frequently omitted. You’ve gone to a lot of trouble to get your documentation in order: renewed passport, applied for visas, pre-booked onward travel and hotel arrangements and in your mind it’s all done and that’s why the documents end up still sitting in an orderly pile in the bureau while you’re arriving at the airport. Make a list, pack your travel documents before you pack anything else and don’t forget you driver’s license in case you decide to hire a car after all.

Entertainment

Lose your sense of where you are, for hours at a time, with some carefully chosen entertainment. Tablet, phone, iPad, they are all going to need a charge so don’t forget charging leads and a portable charger. Download movies to your tablet and sync your phone to Spotify playlists so that you can listen offline. Don’t forget your headphones.

Water

You get dehydrated on a long-haul flight and so you need to drink plenty of water. Sorry, tea, coffee and champagne don’t count, it has to be water. If you ask the attendant for water, the chances are that you’ll be given a thimble full in a plastic cup. Save on plastic and assuage your thirst by carrying a collapsible water bottle and asking the flight attendant to fill it for you.

Sunglasses

When you step off the plane into sunshine, whether it be tropical or arctic, you’re going to want to hide those eyes, tired from jet lag. Opt for mirrored or black for the ultimate in celeb airport style. If you usually wear lenses, don’t forget that brands like Ray-Ban offer a lot of their frames with prescription lenses too.

Eye masks and ear plugs

Worth road testing eye masks and ear plugs beforehand to make sure that they are comfortable and that they work. Being in control of when you want to go to sleep will make you feel a whole lot better on arrival.

A pen

You might regard this item as superfluous and so last century, but you try and fill out an immigration form with your phone.

Things to help you freshen up

Travel toothpaste and toothbrush, moisturizer, eye-drops, hand sanitiser and of course if you are taking medication, don’t forget to bring it with you.

Snacks

Just like deciding when you want to sleep, control over when you have something to eat can be comforting, you no longer have to watch the refreshment trolley inch its way toward you down the entire length of the plane. Cereal bars, which have a slow energy release, are a good, compact choice.

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