Travel Vision: How to prepare and pack for a long-haul flight

Expert shares tips on packing and preparing for a long-haul flight and overseas holiday.

Travel Vision: How to prepare and pack for a long-haul flight

Long-haul flights can be daunting, regardless of how dreamy your destination is. Packing for an overseas trip is challenging, let alone the thought of sitting in one spot for 14 hours on end.

Luckily there are people out there who have done this a hundred times and are happy to share with you their expert tips for doing it cheaper, better and more efficiently.

Co-owner of Cheap Flights Scott Keyes is one such person. He recently spoke with Travel + Leisure to share tips on packing and preparing for a long-haul flight and overseas holiday.

Only take a carry-on backpack
Scott limits himself to a carry-on backpack, saying that it helps him skip the baggage carousel and allows him to get in and out of public transport and up and down stairs without difficulty.

Only pack week’s worth of clothes
You can only fit so much in a carry-on backpack, which in itself encourages travelling light. According to Mr Keyes, it’s room enough for about a week’s worth of clothes. If he travels for more than a week, he does a load of laundry on the road.

Leave the souvenirs at the destination
“Rarely, if ever, do I buy anything on the road. I’m not buying trinkets,” says Mr Keyes.

Get used to your destination’s time zone
“As soon as the [airplane] door closes you set your internal time to the destination time,” he says, that way you can set your sleeping and eating schedule to suit your destination and allow you to acclimate as quickly as possible once you land.

Dole out sleep
“I’ll purposely try to make myself sleep deprived the night before. If I only got five to six hours the night before then I’ll fall asleep,” he said.

What do you think of these tips? Any gems you’ll keep for future travel? Or do you have any better ones?

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    COMMENTS

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    SuziJ
    13th Jul 2019
    10:21am
    A carry on backpack may be good for a young person, but when you get 'older', you 'need' some extra 'things' that you're used to at home. I'd never leave the 'aids' I use at home from my packing list, nor my checked luggage.

    Avoiding sleep - it's not easy when you've travelled extra kms by road just to get to accommodation and then public transport it to the airport. My sleep patterns are 'shot' anyway, so why wouldn't I get as much sleep as possible. I'll still sleep on the plane no matter what sleep I do or don't get the night before the flight.
    Bazza51
    13th Jul 2019
    12:20pm
    For Europe etc I take a backpack with ipad, some clothes, medicines, power packs and cords and travel docs. I also take a leather carry on bag with the rest of my clothes. Never have to go through the waiting at the carousel. I keep it simple for 2 weeks, 2 pairs shorts, 10 T shirts etc. will wash overnight if required. 2 pairs shoes lightweight. I haven't tried setting my watch to destination time but will try this. Also as far as phones go I don't bother with buying sim cards etc, I keep my phone on flight mode and use free wifi everywhere for Facetime or skype back home.
    Bazza51
    13th Jul 2019
    12:20pm
    For Europe etc I take a backpack with ipad, some clothes, medicines, power packs and cords and travel docs. I also take a leather carry on bag with the rest of my clothes. Never have to go through the waiting at the carousel. I keep it simple for 2 weeks, 2 pairs shorts, 10 T shirts etc. will wash overnight if required. 2 pairs shoes lightweight. I haven't tried setting my watch to destination time but will try this. Also as far as phones go I don't bother with buying sim cards etc, I keep my phone on flight mode and use free wifi everywhere for Facetime or skype back home.
    Agnomen
    13th Jul 2019
    12:45pm
    Back packs tend to be longer and narrower than cases of the same volume. Many that are a suitable volume are too long in one dimension to meet airline carry-on baggage limits. Not a problem for long haul legs but becoming a frequent issue if using short haul budget carriers. The budget carriers are getting far more strict on meeting carry-on luggage restrictions. Note also, that some budget carriers are now also weighing carry-on luggage, so stuffing and compressing over weight luggage may still bring the unwary traveller undone.
    sunny
    13th Jul 2019
    1:59pm
    I take carry on case only when going back home. Packing essentials for couple of nights then op shop for the rest when I arrive. If anywhere else, basic matching items 2 only of each, wash and wear for easy life. Have been questioned by security for “lack of luggage”. Can’t see why, I manage very well.
    JO
    14th Jul 2019
    8:48am
    We go for nine weeks 2 times a year with walk on suitcase and day backpack. Tops and Bottoms Undies Socks are latest fabric technology, rinse at night dry by morning.iPad iPhone no sim just use feee wifi, loads free from Library ebooks and audiobooks, borrow more easily as travelling. I take five beautiful scarfs to colour my outfit. My down jacket rolls into a small bag that fits into or hangs from my backpack. We are in our sixties,upliftingly easy travel.
    hyacinth
    14th Jul 2019
    5:22pm
    I have found some tips here helpful particularly about the use of mobile phone overseas. Usually I travel light but in about 3 months , flying overseas for a lengthy (%weeks) voyage home and having to pack clothing suitable for casual. smart casual and evening wear, Really difficult trying to get it all in a good sized case. Any suggestions would be welcome . Also if anyone has been to the UK recently what is the usual price for a meal and coffee and taxi costs (London)
    hyacinth
    14th Jul 2019
    5:22pm
    I have found some tips here helpful particularly about the use of mobile phone overseas. Usually I travel light but in about 3 months , flying overseas for a lengthy (%weeks) voyage home and having to pack clothing suitable for casual. smart casual and evening wear, Really difficult trying to get it all in a good sized case. Any suggestions would be welcome . Also if anyone has been to the UK recently what is the usual price for a meal and coffee and taxi costs (London)
    sunny
    15th Jul 2019
    12:02am
    I found good coffee at McDonald's Mccafe better than most,(4 GBP) food can be costly, (4-8GBP) but check out the flyers people give you. we enjoyed a buy one get one free meal at a quaint eatery, take a container and tell them it's for later, they can't refuse you. Taxis not sure about, wish I was going.......if your game, go into the greasy cafes and order the healthiest meal there for the fun of it!
    hyacinth
    15th Jul 2019
    3:43am
    Thanks Sunny It sounds as though its a pound match for an Aussie dollar. Fortunately my hotel and breakfasts are paid for the two nights at Heathrow also my journey to Southampton but am aware that I need cash also for tips for porters and taxi drivers. Travelling solo . Used to teach in Surrey many many years ago and visited the big smoke regularly but I guess like many places things will have changed quite a bit. Fortes was the place in my day the corner café.
    hyacinth
    15th Jul 2019
    3:43am
    Thanks Sunny It sounds as though its a pound match for an Aussie dollar. Fortunately my hotel and breakfasts are paid for the two nights at Heathrow also my journey to Southampton but am aware that I need cash also for tips for porters and taxi drivers. Travelling solo . Used to teach in Surrey many many years ago and visited the big smoke regularly but I guess like many places things will have changed quite a bit. Fortes was the place in my day the corner café.


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