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9 Things That’ll Make Your Long Economy Flight Suck Less

A woman wearing headphones, a woman in a travel pillow, and a man rests on a black pillow

The worst part about traveling is almost always the travel part itself. Long-haul flights are only slightly more enjoyable if you can afford a seat in first class, but most of us can’t. If you’ve got a long flight coming up this year, here are a few things that can make it far more bearable.


A box of No Jet Lag pills
Miers Laboratories

Nothing puts a damper on your trip like a severe case of jet lag. This is what happens when your body’s internal clock is thrown out of wack by moving through multiple time zones. It often takes several days to get used to your new schedule, which means the first few days of your vacation are spent in a sleepy daze.

That is, of course, unless you take some No-Jet-Lag on your flight. This homeopathic remedy contains a variety of herbs that can help you fight off the symptoms of jet lag before they even begin. We’re not sure exactly how it works, but thousands of happy customers swear by it.

No Jet Lag Homeopathic Jet Lag Remedy

Arrive at your destination fresh and full of energy.

Airplane Foot Hammock

Someone uses a foot hammock
Sleepy Ride

One of the worst parts about a long flight is the leg-cramping most people experience from having to sit in the same cramped position for hours. For some, this can even be dangerous and cause blood clots to form if you don’t get up and stretch your legs periodically.

Another helpful travel accessory you might want to try on your next long flight is an airplane foot hammock. This footrest hangs from the tray table and takes the pressure off your hamstrings and glutes. It’s a handy item to have and will make flying far more bearable.

Airplane Footrest Made with Premium Memory Foam

Elevate your feet without paying for first class.

Compression Socks

Knee-high compression socks

It’s not uncommon to experience swollen legs and feet after a long flight. This is because sitting for hours allows your blood to pool in your lower leg veins, which also sends other fluids to your legs and feet.

Starting your vacation with swollen feet is no fun. Fortunately, there’s an easy fix for this: compression socks! If you wear a pair of these on your next flight, you’ll notice you have better circulation, and you’ll probably even have a spring in your step after you land.

Copper Medical Compression Socks

Help with circulation in your legs during long flights.

Electrolyte Powder

A bag of electrolyte powder packets
Liquid I.V.

Airplanes circulate dry air throughout the cabin for the entire flight. Combined with the common desire to avoid the bathroom as much as possible, you get a recipe for dehydration. While the best way to avoid becoming dehydrated on a long flight is to drink plenty of fluids throughout, you can also aid your system with an electrolyte powder.

Liquid I.V. is a popular choice because it’s known for its unique formula of sodium, glucose, and potassium. These ingredients create an “osmotic force” that allows water into your bloodstream before it completely passes through your digestive system.

To use it, just add some of this powder to your water bottle once during your flight. You’ll feel way more hydrated than you usually do by the time you land.

Liquid I.V. Hydration Multiplier

Avoid those nasty dehydration headaches.

Trtl Travel Pillow

Someone wears a travel pillow and a man with a backpack

Many people struggle to sleep on a plane with those travel pillows that wrap around the neck. If you’re one of them, try the Trtl Pillow.

This special style has a brace that cradles your neck and doesn’t allow your head to fall forward or to the side. Peruse the thousands of reviews, and you’ll see many folks praising this pillow for finally making it possible for them to sleep on a plane.

It’s not for everyone, but it’s definitely worth a try if you need to get some sleep on your next flight, and the standard pillows have never worked for you.

trtl Pillow

More portable than most travel pillows.

An Inflatable Travel Pillow

People sleep on an inflatable travel pillow

If the Trtl pillow doesn’t look appealing, there’s one more option you can try if you’re desperate for sleep: an inflatable. To use this style, you just blow it up, and it creates a unique shape that will support your head in various positions.

It even has armholes so you can rest your face and arms more naturally on your lap or tray table. You might get some looks while you’re blowing this up, but it’ll be worth it if you can actually get a few hours of sleep.

JefDiee Inflatable Travel Pillow

This might be the reason you can finally sleep on a plane.

Noise-Cancelling Headphones

A woman wears headphones

Airplane cabins are notoriously noisy. Even when most of the passengers are asleep, that dull roar of the engine can always be heard. Plus, there’s always at least one fussy baby and/or chatty couple somewhere nearby.

This is why a good pair of noise-canceling headphones are essential for international flights. Instead of listening to your fellow passengers, you can relax to the sounds of your favorite playlist, podcast, or audiobook.

Phone Mount

A phone mount holding a smartphone

Most international flights have screens on the back of each seat so you can watch a variety of shows and movies. However, not all flights have this option. Plus, some people prefer to watch their own media on their phones.

If you fall into the latter category, you can avoid having to lean uncomfortably in your seat to get the right angle and prop up your phone on this handy mount. It keeps your device elevated at just the right level in front of you, so you can watch whatever you want hands-free, while relaxing or eating.

Universal Airplane in Flight Phone Mount

Prop your phone at just the right level and watch whatever you want hands-free.

A Travel Blanket

A woman wears a travel blanket on a plane

Most airlines provide blankets for international travelers. However, they aren’t very warm and their cleanliness is questionable, at best.

That’s why we recommend bringing your own. This compact hoodie-style blanket is made of a fluffy, flannel material to keep you warm and cozy during your entire flight. It’s also easy to pack into its small zip-up carrier, so it won’t take up too much of your luggage space.

MasterManner Travel Blanket

Stay warm and comfy.

It’s probably safe to say no one looks forward to a long flight. Planes are loud, uncomfortable, and stressful. Fortunately, there are a few carry-on essentials that can make your experience a bit less of a nightmare. From noise-canceling headphones to an actually comfortable pillow, if you have the right accessories, you might be surprised at how quickly your flying time flies by.

Anne Taylor Anne Taylor
Anne Taylor is a writer with a BA in Journalism and a passion for storytelling. Her work has been published on a variety of websites including Mental Floss and Well + Good, and she recently published her first novel, What it Takes to Lose. When she's not writing, Anne loves to travel (19 countries and counting), spend time outside, and play with her dog, Pepper. Read Full Bio »
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