Let’s face it, long haul travel is hard work and endured only because there is a fabulous tour sandwiched between those flights. Whether you live in a regional town or a city, once you add the commute to the to the airport to the check-in, flights, potential delays and transfer to your hotel you can be en route for well over a day, and sometimes almost two! Being avid travellers as well as specialist consultants for Global Journeys, we asked our team to share the essential items they take with them in their carry on luggage to help them travel comfortably on those long haul flights.
This is what they always take:
I always take warm socks and slip on shoes in my carry on. I don’t like walking around the plane in just socks so slip on shoes come in handy when I want to head down the aisle to the bathroom, which can get pretty gross on a long haul flight. I also take a scarf on board, it is so cold on the planes. Also, my carry on always contains snacks too, for those hours when you might not be able to wait for the next meal – or maybe the meal wasn’t satisfying and you need a little extra!
Living on the Sunshine Coast means that a long haul flight to Europe is more than just the 24 hour flight time. It can take up to 34 hours from the time I lock my front door at home to the time I slide the hotel key card into the entry slot at my hotel room in Europe. So, I always pack a “comfort kit” into my carry on luggage. The essentials are a good book to happily while away the time onboard and in airport transit lounges between flights as well as warm socks and a pashmina scarf to wrap around my neck, shoulders or head when the aircraft aircon gets chilly. I always include an eye mask and ear plugs to block out both cabin noise and light while sleeping during those long hours of flying.
A couple of products I like to add to help with the rigour dry cabin air can have include a saline nasal spray to keep the airways open and moisturising eye drops to replenish natural moisture in my eyes so they do not feel dry and scratchy.
I always travel with my iPod. I love both music and travel. Of course, listening to music is a great way to relax and while time away on long journeys, but for me music and memory are closely linked. Certain songs I’ve listened to while travelling now trigger fond travel memories for me, so it’s a no-brainer that I would never travel without a soundtrack! Is there a song that triggers a great memory for you?
My answer to what I always include in my carry-on luggage is my Kindle. Why? Most in flight movie channels are boring, invariably I have seen them all. And don’t forget you have to return home as well, there are never enough movies for 48 hours of flying!! I will also always carry my noise cancelling head phones and eye mask. Darkness and silence are required so that I can try to get a few hours sleep in. Other than that, I have learnt to travel quite light when it comes to carry-on.
I always carry a toothbrush and travel size toothpaste because I just can’t risk travelling for over 24 hours and not brushing my teeth! I always carry compression socks, because there is nothing worse than your feet getting cold on a flight and compression socks are also great and help with swelling. It’s always good to have a travel size moisturizer and lip balm as it gets very dry in the air! I like to have my own earphones to watch all the entertainment – they are more comfortable, and they work. I pull out a set of earplugs for sleeping! In economy you just never know if you will be near crying children or loud snorers, or both!
I have two things that I always take in my carry on luggage that I takeout of my bag before it goes in the overhead compartment so I have them on me at all times – lip balm (because something about flying means I need it constantly) and noise cancelling headphones – it blows my mind how much these change the economy class experience! Worth the investment, these have dual purpose, I can use them to listen to movies or music and turn them on for complete silence. Also I can turn on the noise cancelling functionality when watching a movie so all I can hear is the soundtrack.
Even though I only carry a small backpack in flight its contents can last me the first two days of my trip without fail, because I have had my baggage delayed enough times to learn that lesson! I always have a change of clothes, because lost luggage aside, a shower and fresh clothes during a stopover makes all the difference! I never travel without my little amenities kit with deodorant, toothbrush and toothpaste, lip balm, moisturiser, and face wipes. My neck pillow clips to the side of my backpack for easy access so I don’t drool on the poor person next to me while I sleep.
I also carry a reusable water bottle that I can refill with fresh water once I have passed through security (I have a great thin rectangular one that slips perfectly into the seat pocket). Some snacks to help me between meals can also quell in flight nausea caused by motion sickness. I’ll always throw in my phone charger and adapter, so I’m never left without a means of getting in touch.