Love Traveling, Hate Flying
Traveling is stressful enough, and it doesn’t help if you hate flying as much as I do. Claustrophobia, stale air, uncomfortable seats, airplane food (yikes); all things I hate. However, I’ve learned a few tips first-hand that help make flying a bit more bearable.
I’m not going to paint a beautiful picture for you and make traveling seem luxurious, because for most people, it’s not. I’m typing this in aisle 10, seat F, on a flight home from Aruba. The woman in the seat in front of me refuses to believe her seat cannot recline any further, and is actively pushing back with all her might. The young girl in the seat behind me has fallen asleep on the tray table, so I cannot recline my chair. I’m small, yes, but it’s awful cramped in here. I digress.
That leads me to tip #1- comfy clothes. I know this seems lame. But the airport isn’t New York Fashion Week, and you’d be surprised how much more you can relax once you’re comfortable in what you’re wearing during your flight. My choice is always layers. Layers, layers, layers.
Airplanes tend to fluctuate in temperature, and you never really know what it’s going to be like on board until you’re there. This is the beauty of layers. I opt for leggings, sneakers, a tank top/big t-shirt, a sweatshirt/flannel, and a hat. No, it’s not glamorous, and I’m not wearing makeup either, but it works wonders when you can use your hat to cover your eyes, not have to worry about smudged makeup, curl up and rest. Trust me, it makes a difference.
Tip #2- hydrate. I know how annoying it is to have to get up, climb out of your seat, and make your way to the restroom on the flight. Because of the intensity of the awkwardness of that exact situation, I’ve challenged many times to see if I could avoid drinking any liquids during my flights, therefore avoiding the restroom. Bad idea.
Airplanes leach you of moisture, the recycled air drying you out. You’re at a high altitude, surrounded by many people, probably many with germs (I’m a germaphobe, so a tip about germs will follow, trust me). Because of this, I like to do whatever I can to be healthy while I’m flying. A great way to do this is by drinking water. So, while you’re in the airport, grab that big water bottle, and sip during your flight. Your body will thank you, especially your skin. .
Tip #3- avoiding germs. I’m a germaphobe, and airplanes tend to be a hub for germs. So, I suggest bringing hand sanitizer, and if you can, bring one that’s a scent you love. The one I’m carrying right now is eucalyptus flower scented from Bath & Body Works, and smelling it relieves some of my flight anxiety. To know it’s fighting germs at the same time makes it the perfect travel buddy to tuck into the front pocket of my backpack.
Tip #4- get stuff done. I’ve never been great with watching movies on flights; I tend to get distracted, worried about the plane or the weather. I do much better and find that time flies (pun intended) when I’m physically doing something. For example, right now I’m writing this article, and when I’m done, I’m going to read a book that I’m obsessing over right now. This way, when I get off the plane, I’ll have gotten some work done and have enjoyed myself by reading my favorite book. Alternative activities can be to color, draw, play cards, or play games on your electronics.
Tip #5 is one of my favorites- bring candy and snacks with you. Anyone who has flown within the past five years knows how awful airplane food is, even though they come around with the ‘snack cart’ with chips that are overpriced. While you’re getting your water in the airport, grab a couple snacks - candy (Jolly Ranchers are my candy of choice, but to each their own), chips, granola bars, anything small you can fit in your carry on bag. Halfway through a flight, it’s nice to have something to munch on to lift your spirits and power you through the rest of your flight.
My final and most important tip, tip #6, is to have music on deck. I download the most music right before I leave for a trip, and create as many playlists as I can. One of the greatest benefits of music is it can take you somewhere else, which comes in handy when you're stuck on an airplane for hours. Right now I'm listening to Harry Styles' album.
With these tips in mind, I'm going to sign off and read my book. Until next time - safe travels ✈