We all know that long haul flights can really take a lot out of you. From sitting for long periods of time and being cramped in a small space, it is an uncomfortable experience for many. I know from experience that you can improve your experience on long haul flights by packing the right items in your carry-on. In this post I’ll cover the long haul flight essentials that you need for the best flight experience possible. Consider this post as a kind of visual packing list, if you will :).
The basic items that you need electronic-wise include the following:
- Chargers – This includes chargers for all the electronics that you bring with you, such as phones, tablets, or laptops
- Headphones – On long haul flights you are often provided with a set of headphones, but I personally like to take my own
- Travel Adapter – Pro Tip: Bring a travel adapter that can fit several devices, so that you do not have to bring more than one with you
To keep it all organized, I recommend using an electronics cable organizer, like the one pictured below by BAGSMART. I used this one for my last trip and absolutely love it! This organizer made it easy to keep track of all of my cords and kept me from having to dig around in my bag for them.
Productivity and Entertainment
There are a few items you must bring for entertainment and productivity:
- Phone – Necessary for making calls of course, and a useful tool for navigating unfamiliar areas. In many foreign countries you can buy SIM cards to reduce the costs of making calls while abroad. If you are unable to access internet for long periods of time on your trip, apps such as maps.me will allow you to download offline maps.
- Tablet – It is useful to bring a tablet of some sort so that you can read during the flight. A tablet is also a great tool for downloading videos that you may care to watch during the flight, from sites like Netflix. To get more out of your tablet, you can add a keyboard (like this one) and essentially use it as a laptop.
- Laptop – There are, of course, some things that you can only do on a laptop. If you need to do a lot of work on your trip you should certainly take your laptop along. I try to only travel with my laptop when necessary to save a bit of space, however.
If you are into photography, don’t forget to pack these camera necessities!
- Camera – I currently travel with my Canon G7X Mark II, and I love it! I will go into detail on the benefits of this camera in a later post.
- Charger – Keep your camera charged! You should also consider buying a back-up battery so that you are always prepared.
- SD Cards – I like to bring at least two SD cards with me, in the event that I run out of space on one. This is less important if you bring a laptop with you and can easily transfer photos to your laptop.
- Tripod – If you are a real camera pro, bring along a tripod so that you can set up all your shots as you prefer.
My camera gear 🙂
Self-Care | Face, Mouth, Body, and Hair
I like to bring along essential items to help keep myself fresh during and after the flight. This is especially important as you will likely go past a day without a shower when on long haul flights.
Face / Mouth
- Face Wash/ Lotion– Bring your favorite face wash and lotion. It’s a good idea to reapply as you fly to keep your skin moist; plane air can be quite drying
- Body Wipes – Bring wipes (such as baby wipes) to keep yourself smelling fresh when you can’t quickly get to a shower
- Sunscreen – I like to bring a light sunscreen to keep my face protected, especially when traveling during the summer months
- Makeup – Bring your makeup basics with you – I recommend keeping it light, unless you are attending a formal event while traveling
- Toothbrush, Toothpaste, Floss – Bring along your standard dental hygiene items to keep your breath fresh on the flight 🙂
Keeping up your health when traveling is important, so you should keep the following with you at all times:
- Prescription Medications – Keep these on your person (don’t check them!), and keep a reminder if you have to take them at the same time every day
- Melatonin – This is a great supplement to help you sleep better – very helpful if you have trouble sleeping on planes.
- Pain Reliever – Useful in the event that you have a headache or any other body ache during your travels. I prefer Aleve, but Tylenol or Advil are also great options
- Tummy Medicines – Travel Tummy is a real thing guys! The food in some places may impact you worse than in others, so I recommend taking meds such as Pepto Bismol tablets, Imodium, and Charcoal tablets in the event of emergency or discomfort
- Band-Aides – Bring these along in case of cuts / scrapes
You should always bring the following items to keep you comfy while flying:
- Compression Socks – These socks keep the blood circulating as it should, instead of pooling at your feet. Good for the prevention of swollen ankles – I can testify to this 🙂
- Sweater – Bring a sweater or sweatshirt along to keep yourself warm while flying.
- Neck Pillow – Keep that head from bobbing around while you sleep 🙂
- Long Scarf – Take this along in case the flight does not give you a blanket. This is also helpful if you’d like to layer up to stay warm!
- 1-2 Outfits – I like to bring these along, just in case of lost luggage. You never know what might happen!
- Contacts/ Glasses – I recently had LASIK, so no longer require these items, but there are MUSTS if you use them regularly.
- Travel Journal – If you like to journal, bring it along!
- Travel Documents – It’s a good idea to print a copy of all important information, such as the address of your stay, just in case your technology fails you.
Long Haul Flight Essentials | Final Tips
Now that you have all of your items ready to pack, here are a few final tips:
- Pack all of your liquids together in a clear container. Countries vary in how strict they are when going through security with liquids, but it’s best to make sure they meet approved limits before you leave. This TSA-approved pouch is a great option to use, if you do not already have such a container.
- Keep like items separated for easy organization. I like to keep my makeup products in one pouch and my hair accessories in another, for example.
And that wraps my list of long haul flight essentials! Do you have any other essentials that you like to carry on long haul flights? If so, drop them in the comments below!