How to prepare for a holiday in the sun

A long flight is part and parcel of a great holiday. However, long flights can be uncomfortable at best and at times, nothing short of a nightmare. Preparing for your long flight to ensure you have everything to keep you feeling clean, comfortable, rested and entertained is essential if you want your flight to pass without drama. Read on for our tips to preparing for a long flight, as well as some tips for those travelling with children. If you’re heading to Europe, your long flight may only be four hours, as opposed to travelling half way around the world, but you still might want to remember these things – alongside a European Health Insurance Card by filling in an EHIC application form.

Sleeping on long flights

One of the best ways to help a long flight pass by is by spending much of it asleep. The problem is that sleeping on a plane is rarely the cosiest of occasions. Prepare yourself by packing ear buds, an eye mask and if you can fit it in your hand luggage, a neck pillow too. Some airlines, especially on long haul flights, provide blankets, so check first with your airline.

Wear comfortable and warm clothes

Flights can get cold at night and warm in the day so wear layers allowing you to adjust your clothing to the temperature. Stick to comfortable clothes such as joggers and trainers rather heels and tight jeans.

Long flights with children

Long flights with children can be testing times. Not only might your child become agitated, but so will other passengers if your children are loud and difficult. Pack plenty of activity books, reading books, a new magazine and games that you can enjoy together, which will hold their attention for longer than being left to play alone. Check whether your flight shows films and if not, try to bring a tablet with a movie already downloaded on it. Snacks are also wise but avoid sugary drinks that will not only make them hyperactive, but will require more toilet trips than usual! Take them for a short walk up and down the aisle every hour or so to stop them getting restless.

Personal health and hygiene

Women, in particular, will do well by packing flight compression socks, which can reduce the chances of developing DVT. Also be sure to pack a deodorant and antibacterial hand gel as well as a small pack of wipes or tissues and even a toothbrush for very long flights. This will help with you feeling clean and comfortable throughout your flight.


Don’t rely on the onboard entertainment as the films may not be to your liking. Pack a good book, preferably a page turner rather than an epic classic that you’ve been putting off, as this simply won’t hold your attention. Another good choice is a travel guide to your destination – there’s no better way to get in the mood for your holiday. A pack of cards can offer no end of entertainment too.

Long flights are an inevitable aspect of going on a really great holiday and for us Brits, a long flight is often required to reach the best weather. The health benefits of a holiday in the sun are well recognised and far outweigh the inconvenience of a long flight, but provided you’ve prepared for your flight there’s no reason it won’t be a comfortable and enjoyable part of your trip.