7 Essentials to Bring Along on Your Next Long-Haul Flight

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Next week my family will be taking a Long-haul Flight as we set off on our Journey back to New Zealand. Occasionally, you may need to take a long-haul flight for many different reasons. Regardless of your reason for traveling, long haul flights can be a brutal endurance test. However, some long flight essentials can make these trips more bearable.  Here are seven of these essentials worth having to get you through any long-haul flight.

Hand Sanitizer

You can’t make traveling plans these days without factoring in the nature of the times. Using public transportation puts you at significant risk of getting coronavirus, so you will undoubtedly need a travel-size hand sanitizer to protect yourself even on board. Multiple scientists agree that alcohol-based sanitizers with at least 60% alcohol are effective against coronavirus, so consider investing in a travel-size sanitizer to guard against COVID-19.

Many airlines observe strict hygiene protocols by repeatedly disinfecting seating areas and many surfaces that are often touched. Your airline might even offer free hand gels on board, but it doesn’t hurt to have a 100ml sanitizer bottle on you, just in case.

Travel Pillow

At first glance, travel pillows may seem bulky, uncomfortable to carry around, and ridiculous to wear.  However, many seasoned travellers attest to their usefulness on all journey types, especially on long flights.

Sleep is inevitable on a long flight, so consider packing a travel pillow to make your rest comfortable. These pillows allow for maximum comfort in your seat, as they support your head and neck, keeping them better aligned. Some models even come with forward extensions that prevent your head from dropping forward mid-sleep, relieving strain on your back. Besides, they are relatively small and not too inconvenient to carry around, so always bring along a travel pillow to guarantee your comfort.

Eye Mask

An airplane’s interior is far from an ideal sleep environment due to the lights, potential distractions, and sleeping in an upright position. However, eye masks can be a real game-changer on a long-haul flight that can transform your plane’s cabin into the ultimate sleep sanctuary. These masks block out light from interfering with your shut-eye so you can enjoy your sleep. Also, covering your eyes prevents any other distractions like repeated movement that may prevent you from being relaxed enough to count sheep.

Noise-Canceling Headphones

Your peace is never fully guaranteed on a flight, as noise and mid-flight distractions are common. Therefore, packing some noise-canceling headphones is an effective way to make your flight more peaceful and enjoyable. They shut out noisy engines that may distract you from enjoying in-flight entertainment. According to experts, in-flight noise may reach about 85 decibels after take-off, and high-quality noise-canceling headphones can reduce this noise by more than half. 

These headphones also come in handy when you have trouble sleeping due to the crying baby a few rows back or the snoring passenger beside you. Additionally, noise-canceling headphones can help you escape the joyful celebrations of excited sports travellers – for example, it’s a well known fact that many Russian fans travel 13,000 miles to support their club. However, experts advise that you keep an eye out for important flight announcements, so you don’t miss any critical information in your bid to drown out other sounds.

Chewing Gum

The altitude change that invariably accompanies flying creates a painful, clogged feeling in many people’s ears. This ear pressure can be incredibly uncomfortable, and enduring this discomfort throughout a long-haul flight is too much to bear. One of the tried-and-true flying hacks that promote comfort is chewing gum to relieve any pressure that may build up in your ears.

The chewing motion exercises your jaw and opens up your ear canal, releasing any tension naturally. The chewing motion also encourages saliva production and swallowing. Swallowing relieves discomfort within your ears because it forces your auditory tube to open, allowing air to rush into your middle ear to equalize the pressure. This way, you prevent any vertigo or clogged sinuses when you deboard the flight. 

Besides keeping your ears safe, chewing gum is also suitable for freshening your breath on long flights, so it is worth having to make your flight more comfortable.


Snacks are an essential component of long flights that you should invest in for a wonderful flying experience. Airlines will give you food, but this is usually restricted to mealtimes. Also, this food isn’t particularly abundant or great. Therefore, bring enough snacks along to keep you satisfied in-between meals.

Some of the best and healthy snacks for flights include dried fruit, protein bars, popcorn, sweets, chocolate, cereal bars, cheese bites, chickpea salads, organic jerky, etc. Vegetarians can also take some vegan sandwiches, kale chips, non-dairy cheese slices, marinated lentils, etc. However, avoid snacks that are messy and sticky, too crunchy, likely to spill, or have unpleasant smells. Peanuts are also a bad idea, as other passengers may be allergic, so avoid packing any peanuts to prevent medical emergencies on your flight.

Personal Entertainment

Airlines do their best to keep passengers entertained mid-flight with movies, music, and TV shows. However, you may not like your options, so many experts suggest bringing along personal entertainment so you don’t rely on in-flight offerings to while away the hours. Long-haul flights present a perfect opportunity to finish a book or two finally, so consider bringing along some good books to keep you occupied if reading is a favorite pastime.

Loading up your devices with exciting TV series and movies is also suitable for personal entertainment, so you have quality options to fall on if you are dissatisfied with in-flight offerings. Long flights are also perfect for listening to podcasts, so you should undoubtedly consider them for your long-haul flights. These days, there are several podcasts on various themes ranging from comedy to politics. These podcasts fit any hobby or interest, so there will undoubtedly be something for you to listen to. Playing games, doing some crafts, and listening to music can also keep you entertained, so prioritize personal entertainment to make your long flight more enjoyable.

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