My Long Haul Travel Tips


I travel long haul, Canada to Australia at least 3 to 4 times a year, I started this about 5 years ago due to my family commitments.

As most of you know from my recent Instagram posts I departed from Toronto on Friday, November 27 and arrived into Sydney on Sunday, November 29 then onwards to Brisbane for my very short stay. 48 hours later, Tuesday, December 1, I was already on my way back to Toronto.

Yes, I can just hear what you’re thinking….. Crazy person!!!!

While all my travel back to Australia isn’t on this tight turn around schedule, from the time I leave my home in Canada till the time I reach my home in Brisbane it’s 29 hours…. Like I said “Long Haul”.

These are my tips for surviving the long haul across the world jaunt…..

 ~ Reserve The Seat You Want

In my case this is always a window seat and if possible a single seat or a seat with extra leg room.

Depending on your airline and aircraft seat configuration this can be a little tricky, usually takes some forward planning and booking.

When booking your ticket ask the advice of the call centre staff or if booking online always open up the seat plan for your aircraft and select a seat best for you.

~ Arrive At Your Destination In The Morning

Try to book your flight so you arrive at your destination in the morning to daylight, the sun will be shining and your body and brain recognize this and help your chemistry adjust to the new timezone.

~ Pack A Few Days Ahead

Always pack your checked bag and layout everything for your carry on bag a few days ahead, this way you won’t forget the necessities that you need onboard during your flight.

I have a printed packing list that actually lives in the inside pocket of my bag.

Long haul often means that you leave a cold climate and land in hot climate or vice versa — make sure you take that into account when packing especially your carry on luggage.

~ Don’t Get On The Flight Already Exhausted

Get a good night’s sleep the night before you travel. I hear people say how they stay up or don’t sleep the night before their flight.

This is just silly, sleep in your normal routine, your body has a hard enough time adjusting without being exhausted before you even leave on your flight.

~ No Sleeping Pills And Alcohol On The Flight

Don’t take sleeping pills or drink alcohol on the flight, I completely understand why everyone is tempted to do this but honestly just don’t.

Hopefully this would never happen to you on your flight but what if there was an emergency situation and you were zoned out on sleeping pills or too many glasses of wine??

Flying is very dehydrating on your system and so is drinking alcohol, mixed together just causes havoc on your body.

~ Order A Special Meal And Take Your Own Snacks

Ordering a special meal has lots of benefits — it arrives first before the general meal service, it caters for your likes and dislikes and I find it is always a more nutritious option.

I always take my own snacks onboard, it gives me the versatility of eating on my time schedule and also food of my own choice.

~ Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate

I know you hear this all the time but it is so beneficial to your body and wellbeing.

Drink or sip water during your flight, I always take my own bottle of water which I can refill on the plane in the galley, the staff never mind especially when you ask with a smile.

Lip balm, hand cream and a vapour mist for face are necessities to arrive looking fresh and awake.

~ Comfort, Warmth And Privacy

Layer your clothing, it is always warm in the airport and cool to sometimes cold during the flight. Wear comfortable clothes, I always have 2 changes of clothes in my carry on along with warm socks and wear slip on shoes, take my own small pillow and a sleep mask. These give me a sense of privacy and a place to rest my head and face on CLEAN sweet smelling surface.

~ Sleep And Movement

Sleep as much as you can during the flight but when you are awake get up and walk the aisle to encourage the blood to follow freely around your body, I also try to stretch as much as I can. Make sure you read Yogi Amanda Denton’s article on “(_)The Best Poses To Do When Travelling”:

Because I fly so much, I actually invested in nude coloured knee high travel compression socks. No one can tell that I am wearing them — the days of swollen feet, ankles and legs are no more!

~ Daylight

My personal alarm is set at least 1.5 hours before landing, at this point I gradually start to open my window shade to the daylight, the sunlight allows my brain to start adjusting to the new time zone.

I like to have time to eat, brush my teeth, freshen up, change my clothes and apply some make up before we start our descent and the seat belt sign is illuminated.

~ Routine And The New Time Zone

Once I land, I try to start the new day just like I would at home — yoga stretches, shower, clean clothes and a healthy breakfast with lots of sunlight.
Usually there is another flight onto Brisbane for me and I don’t arrive until midday, I endeavour (sitting for long periods is my downfall) to stay awake during my 1.5 hour plane flight and eat a snack with the window shade open for lots of sunlight.

I keep myself busy for the rest of the day, lots of water maybe a coffee, lunch, emails and work then an early dinner by 7pm and bedtime by 8pm.

Depending on the time of year the sunrise in Australia can be as early 4.30am, I leave the blinds open and wake up to the sunlight, my goal is always return to my everyday routine as soon as possible no matter which timezone I am currently in.

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