Just over a week ago I boarded my longest flight yet: 17,5 hours from Perth to London. That’s a pretty long time being stuck in an economy seat! But I have to say retrospectively that not having a stopover was totally worth it. With the right essentials handy, you will master a long flight like this without a problem. Here are my 8 things I cannot go without:
1. Neck Pillow
A neck pillow has to be the number one essential. I once went on a 12-hour flight without one because I had lost mine somewhere along the way and I learnt my lesson quickly. Nowadays there are all kinds of neck pillows available including transformable ones to square pillows, but either of them will do the job. My personal preference is micro beads over micro foam and it is always best to give your chosen pillow a try first e.g. on a longer car ride to make sure it is right for you.
2. Headphones and Adapter
The second essential are headphones, because let’s be honest, those ones you get on the plane hurt your ears and are no good. 17,5 hours with that? No thank you. This means you will also need a small adapter so you can use your headphones for in-flight entertainment. They look like this and are really cheap if you order them beforehand.
My headphones of choice are the Bose SoundSport because they are comfortable to wear and have a great sound, but I am by no means a headphone expert 🙂
As you may not always get Wi-Fi on the plane, it is also advisable to pre-download your desired playlists and podcasts on Spotify or other streaming platforms. That way you can be sure that you are able to access your music. Anytime, anywhere.
3. Passport Case
My next essential is my passport case, mainly because I can keep my flight ticket and baggage receipt in there. When arriving in London, somebody decided to walk away with my partner’s suitcase instead of their own. Without a baggage receipt this would have been a problem. Luckily, my passport case had everything it needed in it. Of course you can also keep the tickets and receipts in a wallet or somewhere else in your bag. For me personally the passport case is the best solution.
If you choose an RFID one, it will on top protect your personal data. Again, there is a huge variety out there. Careful: Not all cases go with all passports, e.g. my German passport is bigger than the Australian ones and a few years ago I bought a case which in the end did not fit my passport.
As you can see, I chose to go with a Fossil RFID Passport Wallet. I have had it for a few years now and it has never let me down.
4. Small Plastic Bottle
The fourth essential is a small plastic bottle to fill and refill when needed along the trip. Most airports now have water fountains after security where bottles that needed to be emptied before can be refilled. Finally! During your long flight drinks will be offered, but not always regularly. It is always good to have an emergency drink with you. Especially the dry plain air always makes me thirsty quite a lot.
5. Charging Cable (and Adapter)
You might be travelling for up to 24 hours or longer overall, so chances are one of your devices is going to run out sometime along the way. Not fun if you still have most of your plain ride to get through. On my Qantas flight, every seat had a power plug next to the screen. Airport cafés or lounges usually have them, too.
Depending on the country you are flying to, you might still need an adapter. Unfortunately, not all of them are USB charging stations (yet). Again, I think it is better to be overly prepared in this case rather than bored to death on the plane!
We all know those little departure or arrival cards you need to fill out sometimes. Maybe you have a tax return form to hand in or you simply have the best idea of your life while up in the air. Either way, a pen is always a good idea and a good item to add to your hand luggage.
7. Eye-Mask and Earplugs
I don’t know about you, but after the third movie I am usually ready to try and get some sleep. I say try, because it is hard for me to properly sleep on planes, but in most cases I can at least doze off for a while. For me, this only works with an eye-mask and some high quality earplugs.
I can strongly recommend these earplugs. They cost significantly more than normal earplugs, but in my opinion they are worth it. Moreover, they last longer and do not need to be replaced frequently.
8. Small Backpack or Handbag
Lastly, let’s talk about hand luggage solutions. For me, the ideal hand luggage combination consists of a small carry on suitcase (like this one from American Tourister) and a small handbag or backpack (e.g. a Fjällräven Kanken Casual Daypack or something even smaller). In your suitcase, you can store your laptop, chargers, e-reader, books and magazines and your neck pillow. I use the handbag for keeping the small and important things such as wallet, phone, passport and tickets.
You will notice that I have chosen a colourful suitcase and backpack here. This is not necessarily because I like things as colourful as possible. It is simply more practical to spot your pink carry on trolley somewhere above the seats than a black one would be. As everything it comes down to personal preference.
Off You Go!
Now with all these tips handy I hope you will enjoy your next long flight. Or, at least, as much as possible. I would also be interested in your opinion and whether you would like to add something to the list…?
Lots of love ♡
Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links, which means I will earn a small percentage of the product price if you choose to purchase something.