How to Get Through an Overnight Flight Without Jet Lag.

Melanie Sutrathada shares how to get through an overnight flight without jet lag..jpg

There’s a lot of excitement around traveling long distances. You’re going somewhere new, maybe even somewhere foreign? Your mind buzzes about what you will wear, what you want to see, do, and eat. I mean, hello, this is part of the fun of traveling! You’re basically leaping out of your door, throwing on your “Out of Office” responses as you go, bags packed and in line to board the plane when it hits you…

This is an overnight, ten-hour flight. 

Whether you have experienced it before or not, you know that jet lag is definitely not your friend. Your stomach sinks a little bit, thinking about how spending the first two days of your trip sleeping is certainly not in the itinerary. The best thing you can do on your next overnight, long haul flight is to show up prepared and with a solid “sleep strategy”!

So, before you get in line to board the plane next time, here’s a few things to keep in mind:

Get a good night’s sleep the night before your flight. Being exhausted going into a long travel day is more likely to make the whole process more stressful. A sleepy mind means forgetting things, getting in the wrong line to check your baggage, and leaving your phone in the Uber (been there, done that). Trust me, you’ll sleep better on the plane knowing you aren’t arriving in a foreign country without a phone.

Pack the essentials! Your go-to list of airplane nap-time necessities is right here: eye mask, small pillow or neck cushion, a light blanket, cozy socks, headphones, and a small tube of lavender essential oil. Bonus extras: Noise cancelling headphones (to drown out the noise of the plane and inevitable crying babies), and melatonin (if you usually have trouble sleeping on planes). Put a drop or two of lavender essential oil on your wrists and a teeny bit under your nose to help you relax.

If you can’t fall asleep… Relax as much as humanly possible. Binge-watch a bunch of rom-coms, meditate, listen to soft music, and pretend you’re already on vacation. I know it’s common to think of “all the work you can get done”, but try to refrain! If you aren’t able to sleep, it’s likely your body will already feel pretty exhausted the next day. Don’t overwork your brain, too. Look at it this way, you now have all the free time you need to finally fulfill your New Year’s Resolution to meditate! Better late than never, right?

Always go for comfort over cuteness. As much as we would all love for it to be true, cute jeans probably aren’t the most comfortable option for sitting on a plane for 10+ hours. Remember, sleep is your ultimate priority! That nap is going to be worth wearing sweatpants in your #TravelDay ‘gram. 

Hydrate like its your job. Or your side-hustle/hobby. Whichever you tend to spend more time on throughout the week. Especially if you’re not able to sleep much, proper hydration will help your body to avoid those tiring jet lag symptoms! Being sure to drink lots of water before, during, and after your flight will be crucial for beating the tiring effects of dehydration! Even after you arrive, chase your espresso with water. Your body will thank you by not being completely and utterly worn down. 

Once you arrive, DON’T take a nap! Planning activities the day of your arrival will help to motivate you to leave your hotel room and skip the nap you are probably dying to have. Going to sleep as late as possible your first evening will help get you on the local sleep schedule quicker, which means BEATING jet lag! 

Ain’t nobody got time for jet lag. There’s a big beautiful world out there to see, so spend your time on the plane relaxing, sleeping, meditating, and being the laziest human you know how to be. Once you land, it’s time for the real fun to begin!