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High Altitude Relaxation: Top Tips for Your Long-Haul Flight

Since most people don't fly first or business class and even flights with "just" three hours in economy class can quickly become exhausting, we've compiled our top tips in this post for making your time on the plane as pleasant and relaxing as possible!

Blick aus Flugzeugfenster


Table of Contents


1. The Perfect Long-Haul Flight Outfit

To ensure maximum comfort during your flight, you'll want to wear comfortable clothing - that much is logical. But it's not quite that simple! Your flight outfit should also be functional because airplane air conditioning can quickly affect you, and if you're traveling to a warm destination, you don't want to break a sweat as soon as you step off the plane!

From our perspective, the ideal long-haul flight outfit consists of the following:

  • Comfortable underwear

  • Pants with an elastic waistband, yoga pants, or sweatpants

  • T-shirt

  • Compression socks

  • Cap

  • Sneakers

2. Feeding Frenzy: Dining and Drinking In-Flight

During a long-haul flight (depending on the duration), you'll also be offered meals and drinks. On your airline's online portal, you can pre-select a meal in advance. If you're a vegetarian or have any dietary restrictions, we highly recommend choosing this option to ensure you receive the food you need.

Additionally, make sure to drink plenty of water but avoid caffeinated beverages and alcohol.

Essen im Flugzeug: Salat und Glas Wein

Furthermore, we always bring our own water bottle on board so we don't have to wait for the flight attendants. We opt for an insulated bottle that's easy to refill at water dispensers (commonly found at many airports).

Additionally, we pack some smaller snacks for in-flight munching (like an apple, a banana, or a granola bar) to tide us over between meals.

3. Unlocking Legroom: Tips for Maximizing Space on Your Flight

Depending on the airline, there's not always a lot of space between you and the person in front of you in economy class. If you're looking for a bit more room, the easiest way is to choose an aisle seat.

Beine von Mann im Flugzeug (Beinfreiheit)

For even more space, we recommend selecting a seat near the emergency exit. Keep in mind that in the event of an emergency, you'll be required to assist in opening the emergency exit. Flight attendants will provide instructions before takeoff.

4. Tips and Exercises for Staying Active on a Plane

If you have a long flight ahead of you, it's advisable to stand up and move around the airplane occasionally. However, this isn't always feasible as it might disturb other passengers. That's why we have a few exercises you can do right at your seat.

  • Relieve your back: Pull your shoulder blades back towards your spine, arching your chest forward, and hold this position for a few seconds.

  • Stretch: Raise both arms above your head and rotate your wrists in both directions.

  • Activate calf pump: Pull your toes towards your shins and press your heels into the ground, feeling tension in the tops of your feet and the front of your shins. This activates the calf pump and helps prevent blood clots.

5. In-Flight Entertainment: Movies and Music

During longer flights, you'll have your own screen in front of you, giving you access to the entertainment program offered by your airline, where you can choose from a variety of movies and TV shows to pass the time.

Additionally, we always bring our own music or a good book to read. We also enjoy listening to audiobooks or podcasts together during the journey. If you'd like to give this a try, we recommend signing up for a 30-day free trial of Audible! :-)

Alternatively, we like to use this time to work on one of our blog articles. Perhaps you have a particular activity you enjoy doing during flights, like journaling or writing in a diary, that you can take advantage of.

6. The Best Time of Day to Fly: Timing Is Everything

Flights early in the morning are typically punctual. If you need to catch a connecting flight or want to arrive at your destination as early as possible, this is advantageous. In the early morning hours, the aircraft is also said to be the cleanest, as this is usually when the initial cleaning takes place.

Emirates Flugzeug beim Gepäck verladen nachts

If you want to arrive feeling well-rested, we recommend opting for a night flight. This way, you can use the flight time to sleep and kick-start your day directly at your destination.

However, sleeping on airplanes can often be relatively uncomfortable. The noise, limited space, and turbulence can make it difficult to fall asleep, resulting in a less-than-relaxed arrival at your destination, leaving you feeling exhausted by the time you reach your hotel bed.

That's why in the next point, we'll show you how to fall asleep comfortably and find cozy sleeping positions in economy class!

7. Tips for Falling Asleep on an Airplane

Finding a comfortable sleeping position on a plane can be quite challenging. It's cramped, noisy, and occasionally a bit shaky. Here are our tips to help you fall asleep on a plane:

Possible sleeping positions on the plane:

  1. Fold out your tray table and rest your head on it with a pillow. Cross your arms under your head for support.

  2. If you have a window seat, lean your head against the window with a pillow.

  3. Head to head: This works only if you're traveling with a companion and you're roughly the same height.

  4. If the flight is empty: If your flight is quite empty, consider it your sleeping jackpot: stretch out across the rows in the middle seats, almost like in first class ;-)

Other tips to help you fall asleep on the plane:

  • Wear loose clothing.

  • Use a sleep mask and earplugs to block out light and noise.

  • Use blankets: You'll usually receive one on longer flights.

  • Fasten your seatbelt over the blanket so that you won't be woken up by the crew for a safety check if there's a "fasten seatbelt" sign.

  • Take off your shoes and put on warm socks to keep your feet warm.

8. Travel Essentials: What You Need on a Long-Haul Flight

On a flight, having a comfortable outfit is just half the battle. To ensure you can settle in comfortably at your seat, we have some additional tips for you.

A small waist pouch is extremely practical. Not only can it hold your passport and phone, but also many other small essentials for your journey.

Since there are quite a few background noises on the plane, earplugs can be a real comfort if you want to sleep. Pair them with a sleep mask, and you'll be effectively shielded from the surroundings.

Alternatively, you can listen to music (download your playlist beforehand), read a book, or watch a movie in the airline's media library.

To avoid waiting for beverage service, we also recommend bringing a water bottle on board.

Here's a recap of all the items we always have at our seat:


Looking for more tips for your next long-distance journey? Feel free to check out our travel tips section! There, you'll find additional helpful guides and various packing lists.

Still searching for the perfect travel destination? Then we recommend exploring our sections on worldwide destinations or types of travel.


If you want more insights into our travels, feel free to check out our Instagram channels tom_rbg_ and anna_mser! If you have any questions about the routes, you can always contact us through these channels.


*This post contains affiliate links. You won't incur any additional costs through purchases made via these links; you're simply rewarding our efforts.


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