How to Survive Long Trips on Planes, Trains, and Automobiles


Long trips can be exhausting and tedious if you do not have the proper preparation. Bringing the correct items when on a plane, train, and automobile ride can save you hours of excruciating boredom and discomfort while you wait to arrive at your new destination. Often, long periods of traveling affect your sleep schedule, so it is helpful that you plan before leaving to avoid unnecessary jet lag. Now that there are direct flights that take you across many different time zones, you should consider how to make your trip more enjoyable for yourself, as you may be sitting for longer. Here are some quick and easy tips to avoid severe jet lag, boredom, and uncomfortable situations when traveling for large amounts of time.

Sleep and Time Differences

When traveling, try changing your watch or phone clock to your new destination’s time zone. Doing this before you leave can help your body synchronize with the new sleep schedule. Additionally, being well rested before embarking on a long trip helps your body deal with the physical demand of altering your sleep pattern. Sleeping while traveling can also help your body prepare for the time differences, so try to make sure you that your onboard sleep coincides with the time of your new destination. Bringing a pair of earplugs and an eye mask can also help tone out the loud noises and ensure for a smooth and relaxing ride.

Staying Comfortable

Make sure that when you board your vehicle of transportation you place all your belongings in the correct storage bins. Remove all your valuable possessions that you know you need to use, so you do not have to open your stored luggage when the trip begins. Remember, not all transportation comes with heating or air conditioning so prepare to bring extra layers to take on, and off if needed. If you know you need to sleep on the ride to sync your sleep cycle with the new time change, bring a pillow and blanket to make yourself more comfortable. During the trip, try to get up and walk around as much as you can, especially if you are driving in a car. Sitting for long periods can lead to a build-up of lactic acid in your legs, which can leave your body feeling sore after. Walking up and down the aisles, and using the restroom when needed, can help relieve your body from these unwanted aches and pains afterward.

Onboard Entertainment

Packing something to entertain yourself when on a long trip can help pass the time faster. Carefully planning out what types of entertainment you want to bring in your carry on luggage can help make a long trip a lot more enjoyable. Although flights often have in-house media that you can watch with a pair of headphones, it is not guaranteed, so try bringing your own devices or books to help reduce restlessness during the trip. It is also crucial to remember that when traveling on a plane, some electronics are often prohibited, so downloading movies, music, and games on your devices ahead of time is a smart decision.

Arriving at Your Destination

Try not to let jet lag get the best of you after your trip. Remember, although traveling is tiring, sometimes staying up after the trip helps your body adjust to the new time zone. Although you may be tempted to return to your previous sleep schedule, it can help you enjoy your travels more if you get used to the new time difference. Just remember, try to relax and enjoy your trip, as a new adventure is waiting for you once you arrive!


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