On average I take one long haul return flight a month...in economy. Over the years I have learned several key things to make the experience more pleasant, more business class rather than walk-on-cargo. As I am a novelist, it goes without saying that I will have at least one paperback with me and at least a dozen novels on my iPad for the journey. I normally have noise cancelling headphones especially when I need to work.
Remember to keep hydrated on the flight. Also remember that many airlines do not carry slim-line tonic for your G&T so, if you can, buy it in the airport or sacrifice some of the space in your liquids bag for a couple of small cans.
If at all possible I travel hand luggage only. I have had the same black Samsonite pull-along bag for 15 years now. It is tiny but some how I can manage to carry up to a week's worth of clothing carefully planned in it. I also have my computer bag with lap top, iPad, pens, notebook, chargers and all the things that I need to hand on the flight.
Top Travel Tips
- Be careful of opening tubes like Juicy Tubes in the air – the tend to have mini explosions (fountain pens too)
- Wear leggings, skinny jeans or skirts to avoid them coming into contact with the loo floors which can be dire
- Always travel with a scarf/ pashmina no matter what the time of year
- the cabin temperature can be very cold
- your neighbour may have had fried onions for breakfast or have come off a 14 hour flight and straight to the seat beside you
- A small pack of baby wipes can be your best friend...they are great for cleaning hands but even better for removing stains from clothing especially white jeans (which you shouldn't travel in but sadly I do!)
- A small tube of sudocrem is a godsend...takes care of chaffing, flip flop toe trouble, bug bites and sunburn
- A small tube of moisturizer...the cabin is a very dry place and a good lip balm (see 1 – juicy tubes are fab but I have had one empty itself all over my hand when I opened it)
- A spare pair of knickers or two; if a flight is delayed or diverted...at least one part of you will be clean
- Tooth brush - see above
- Ear plugs/eye cover – don't rely on the air line to provide
- Breath mints, parecetamol, blister plasters, a ball point pen (for filling in forms), Berroca for jet lag, nuts (airplane food is never enough and never at the right time), and Gaviscon to cope with the dire food
- Finally patience...travel is becoming more and more popular and therefore slower and slower groundside!
See my books on Amazon including The Cornish House, A Cornish Affair and A Cornish Stranger.