Whether you are taking a long-haul flight or just a short one to the other side of the country, there are some things you should always take into account when boarding a plane. First things first. Take a look at these five, and share with us any others that help you feel more comfortable up in the air.
Count the rows until the exit
Flying is very safe, and of course, nobody wants to think about a plane crash! But, according to research, if you take a moment to mentally prepare for one, you increase your chances of survival if the worst does happen. In a report analyzing airline accidents from 1983 to 2000, the National Transportation Safety Board found that the survival rate of crashes was 95.7%. Now, if you combine those stats with the fact that airplane accidents are very rare, you truly realize that flying is actually the safest form of transportation.
So, next time you get on a plane, remember to count the rows between your seat and the closest emergency exit. And in case the plane goes down or makes an emergency landing, you will know how to make your way out, even in the dark, by counting the rows by hand.
Check for a life jacket or life vest
They are usually under the seat but, who knows? The flight crew might’ve missed a routine check between flights. So be sure to check just in case you need to ask for one.
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Gather your in-flight essentials
It’s common to feel a little cold while on board a flight and, although some airlines offer a tiny flat pillow and maybe a blanket, it’s always a good idea to bring your own. Soft blankets and neck pillows make everything more comfortable. Plus, nowadays there are surprisingly compact products (that don’t need much space and are easy to carry).
TravelSmith offers a handy blanket that easily stows into its own compact stuff sack and unfolds to offer warm, lightweight, and luxurious comfort for 39USD. Eagle Creek designed the Cat Nap Travel Blanket, a super comfy blanket made of micro fleece that has a zip pocket for your eyeshade or paperback and a foot pockets for added delight. Price? 30.95USD. Another great option is the Fleece Travel Blanket, by Vera Bradley. It’s a generously-sized blanket that folds down into a travel pillow, includes a trolley sleeve for easy transport through the airport and can be yours for 38USD.
There are people that are also used to eye masks so, if you’re one of them, you might probably want to write that down on your travel list. Ear plugs or noise-cancelling headphones can help you drown out the sound on the plane when you try to rest, cancel the turbine noise and just hear the sound of what you’re listening. Not a bad idea. This items will help you feel more pleased and enjoy as much as you can the flight that will be about to take off. Planes can be quiet from now on: “You don’t realize how much noise there is on a plane until you have these on and turn them off or take them off”.
Prepare your entertainment devices
Seemingly each day airlines add more entertainment to their aircraft. Not only movies and new albums but also Wi-Fi. In case you’re not sure what yours offers, or you just need your electronics (whether it is an MP3 Player for music and audio books, a laptop or Tablet for writing or reading, a portable DVD player or a portable gaming console), make sure you have them within reach. Of course, remember that some can only be used when the flight crew allow you to.
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For an enjoyable flight have your devices fully charged before leaving. Although the some airplanes have plugs right next to the screen, they usually run slow. Another option is to consider investing in a portable battery pack. If you have your electronics in your personal bag in the overhead compartment, remember to take out everything before taking off so that you’re not constantly getting up and sitting down.
Stay clean and hydrated
If you are one of those that need to brush your teeth after every meal, remember to bring a small toothbrush and toothpaste on the flight. You’ll be happy to stay clean and so will your seatmate (smelling someone’s breath after a 7-hour flight is hard!).
Airline travel is dehydrating, so stick to drinking water and plenty of it. It’s true that you can’t bring a bottle of water past security but you can accept the water everytime it comes your way while on board. Drinking leads to going to the bathroom but keep in mind that it’s always more important to be hydrated with a full bladder than being dehydrated. Also dry skin and scratchy eyes are really common up in the air, so avoid them with a nice moisturizer and apply them to your face and hands and use saline drops for your eyes, specially if you wear contact lenses.
Last but not least, keep your LugLoc near you so, as soon as the plane has landed and you have Wi-Fi signal, you can turn on the device and track your luggage to know if everything’s under control. Happy travels!
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