Tips To Help Make Your Flight More Comfortable
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5 Pieces Of Advice To Help Make Your Air Travel More Comfortable

Here's your 101 guide to securing a better flight experience!

5 Pieces Of Advice To Help Make Your Air Travel More Comfortable

As a relatively frequent air-traveler, I've had my fair share of airplane rides, both international and domestic. In fact, I'm writing this article right now as I sit in an airport in Toronto waiting for my 12:55 flight to Shanghai. Traveling by plane may often feel stressful or even nerve-wracking, but here are a few tips that I've picked up through my own experiences that will hopefully make your flight feel more comfortable.

1. Make sure to TIGHTLY stuff all corners and edges of any check-in luggage.

Fun fact: I learned this tip today when my dad yelled at me at 4 am this morning for not packing properly! I love learning new things every day. But in all seriousness, I'm glad that he caught my mistake before it was too late.

Check-in luggage is ALWAYS handled very roughly by the staff, no matter what airline you're with. Unfortunately for us, acting with caution and delicacy can be time consuming, and they have to handle it this way in order for your baggage to shipped to your destination on time. There is a good chance that your luggage will be violently thrown around which can cause irreparable damage and denting —especially if there are empty pockets of air in the corners of your luggage, where there is nothing there blocking dents from forming. That being said, stuff your luggage's edges tightly.

2. Actually, stuff the corners of your carry-on luggage tightly, too.

Once when my parents were boarding, their luggage was randomly selected to be a check-in instead of a carry-on right at the gate. How did the airport staff implement this change, you ask? They dropped the luggage at the mouth of the tunnel that connects to the plane, tens of feet above the ground until it hit the concrete and the staff on the ground was able to pick it up and put it with the others. Needless to say, it was pretty badly damaged.

My parents later wrote up a complaint to the airline company who wrote back, arguing that we were the ones who should have bought a sturdier suitcase.

I am disappointed in you, Delta.

Moral of the story is that airlines are two-faced little snakes who will rarely take responsibility for your damaged property. The most we can do is to try our best to prepare in the case of these scenarios (unless y'all want to start an uprising). Pack your check-ins carefully and, um, buy sturdier suitcases, I guess.

3. DEFINITELY consider buying water before your flight.

This is especially important to keep in mind if you ever forget to bring a refillable water bottle with you. Yes, anything you buy at an airport is about seven times more expensive than it will be if you buy it anywhere else, but unless the TSA suddenly decides to lift its ban on liquids in greater quantities than 100 mL, then we're stuck either buying a $5 bottle of water or dying of dehydration.

Typically, my cheap self will be the type to chug as much free water as I can at the nearest water fountain an in attempt to satisfy my thirst for the next several hours, but airplanes are exceptionally dry, given that they're recycling oxygen to use and the air outside at such high altitudes cannot hold much moisture.

Of course, the attendants will hand out drinks and snacks every now and then, but on typical domestic flights, they offer them only once. They'll offer a couple more on international but usually with large intervals of time in between. I will never forget that one time I was flying to China with United. Me and my sister's and throats were so dehydrated and our tongues were so parched that I was afraid I'd start choking on the moisture depriving air. It was in the middle of an overnight flight, and there were no flight attendants in sight (I assume that they were all resting at the time or just not visiting our part of the cabin).

Thankfully, we were able to take small, rationed sips from our kind, not-cheap grandmother's water bottle that she decided to splurge on before boarding the plane. If not for that, I don't think I would've actually made it.

If you're only flying on a short, two to three hour long domestic flight, you might be okay with not having water on you, but any longer, and I would definitely recommend buying. Your comfort (and survival) is worth more than a couple of dollars.

4. Dress for comfort.

Honestly, I never really understood those people in the airport who were dressed in nice clothing with a full face of makeup on. Unless you have a business meeting to attend or an important individual to meet (like maybe a long-distance partner) as soon as you get off, I personally don't find it necessary to get all dressed up just to sit in a cramped blue chair for a couple of hours. Which is why if you ever just happen to run into me at an airport, please do not judge me for looking like a homeless person.

Oh, and try to dress in layers too. They usually keep the plane cabins pretty cold. If you're traveling to a hot destination like I am, just keep an extra pair of shorts in your purse or backpack to change into when you arrive.

5. Find small containers to put your other fluids or creams in.

If you're the type of person who already suffers from dry or sensitive skin who has difficulty surviving without certain pieces of your skin care routine, try finding smaller, carry-on friendly containers for your products. Department stores like Walmart and Target carry small bottles and other containers specifically made to put your products into when traveling. Or what I did was take an extra contact lenses container (a pill box would work too) and filled one side with moisturizer and the other with aloe vera gel just to take on board with me.

And that's all! Good luck to all my first-time flyers out there, and good luck to everyone who's flying alone for the first time too! Remember to always, always ask for help from the airport staff when needed and make sure to arrive earlier than you think you need to.

I wish you a safe journey and a great flight. Have a wonderful vacation!

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