Did you know that the flight from Sydney, Australia to Dallas, Texas is the longest continuous flight in the entire world? And I make that trip more than once a year, every year. It seems these days if I am flying anywhere the flight times are at least 19 in the air plus one to two layovers. With all that traveling I have become a pro on how to pack for those long haul flights around the world. Here’s what you can find in my carry on bag.
Good Travel Bag: depending on the flight I am taking I alternate between my mom’s SwissGear travel bag, and my Vera Bradley Large Duffle. Pros of the duffle are that it always fits into the tiny bag checkers, cons are that it sometimes feels like a black hole, especially while trying to find a toothbrush on a dark plane.
Hoodie: Similar to the sweatpants, you’ll be sorry you don’t have one of these when the plane feels like its -20°!
Lotion: A small 3oz bottle of lotion can alleviate that icky feeling from your hands.
Deodorant: Please don’t be the stinky man, or woman, on the plane. Be kind to your neighbors.
Headphones: If you plan on listening to your own music or watching movies on your ipad, a pair of headphones is great. If you watch the movies the plane is showing then headphones aren’t necessary as a special pair will be provided. However, when there is a crying baby on board you’ll wish you’d invested in a pair of these Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones – they really work!
Charging Cables: Most of the international flights I have been on have usb ports in the back of the headrest or arm rest so remember to put your cords in your carry on so you’re fully charged when you get to your destination country.
Neck Pillow: You will be provided a pillow and blanket when you board the plane, but I always bring my own neck pillow to use as my pillow, and use the given pillow to slide in between my side and arm rest for extra comfort. When selecting a neck pillow, pick one with memory foam or a neck and chin support, not the inflatable or bean filled ones.
Bottle of Water: Once you have cleared security, buy a bottle of water to keep in the seat pouch in front of you. That way you won’t have to rely on the flight attendants or badger your neighbors to get up and get water.
Zquill or Melatonin Supplements: America and Australia are on completely different schedules with a time difference of 14 to 16 hours depending on the time of year. Sleep aids are crucial for falling asleep at the time of your destination country to reduce jet lag when you arrive.
Sweatpants: Depending on where you are seated the plane may be a comfortable temperature or you might be freezing. I always pack a pair of sweatpants, because even if I am not freezing, it makes a good cushion to prop against those plastic armrests.
Tylenol or IB Profin: You never know how you’ll be feeling on flight day, how the flight food will make you feel, or if your sciatic nerve will flare up mid-flight (it’s happened to me, and it’s the worst!) I always pack travel cases of medicine just in case there’s a minor emergency.
Books/Magazines: Before a big flight I always make sure my kindle app is stocked with a good book or two, and I have two magazines in my carry-on. I don’t like reading off the ipad screen as I am trying to read which is where it comes in handy to have both types of reading material.
Eye Mask and Ear Plugs: The cabin will be dim from the moment you’re fed dinner to the moment the captain makes an announcement for breakfast, but there will still be ambient light and your body may be adjusting to the idea that it’s bed time at 3pm, that’s where an eye mask is so handy.
Cozy Socks: A little something I pack for every flight. I like to kick off my shoes and be comfortable, but I don’t want other people toe jam all over my feet. Oh, and shoes in the bathroom are a requirement people!! I usually bring barre socks or fuzzy slipper socks.
Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleansing Cloths: The air inside a plane can make your skin dry out leaving you with a yucky feeling. Cetaphil wipes are great at cleaning and moisturizing your face, or removing makeup during the flight.
Toothbrush and Toothpaste: Because your breath will be kickin’ after 16 hours, and your family doesn’t want to smell that when you get to the airport!
What’s the longest flight you have ever been on? Is there anything you always pack in your carry-on for international flights?