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12 Items That Are Indispensable for An Enjoyable Flight

The holidays are upon us and with it brings the mass exodus via airports nationwide. Between extra fees for bags, charging for snacks and the nasty viruses that get to ride for free, flying isn’t always what it’s cracked up to be. In order to make your flight as pleasant as you can, here are some suggestions for articles to bring with you as you settle into your seat.

  1. A large oversized scarf Not only does this fashion accessory make you look like a rock star as you deplane, but if also offers a cozy barrier between you and the rest of the world. You’ll sleep much better with a blanket around your shoulders that hasn’t been on the floor of another flight.

  2. A pillowcase Take the silly little pillow they give you with the weird paper fabric case. Add the blanket they provided. Put the whole thing into your own pillowcase. The familiar feel of your sheets from home, coupled with the knowledge that the only drool marks on it are yours makes for much better in flight sleep. (You know you do it.).

  3. Gum Not just any gum, but packs of brightly colored bubble gum. When you are seated near a noisy small child, politely offer the parent of said child the entire pack of gum. Trust me, they won’t say no to sealed candy when their children’s eyes are popping covetously out of their heads. The beauty of this evil plan is that small children can’t talk and chew gum at the same time. Did you hear me? They can’t do it! The dear little tots will be sitting silently in their seats working ferociously on their cud.

  4. Hand sanitizer Honestly, when I fly I would drink this if I could. There’s nothing so, well, residually disgusting as your flight seat. Use it every time you use the bathroom or if you’re really desperate, you read that Sky Mall magazine in the seat back. You can even put a thin, thin, thin swipe of it under your nose. Stops the germies in their tracks. (Vicks works as well).

  5. Sanitizing wipes Yes, you ARE going to be that neurotic. Wipe down your tray, your window handles, your buttons, headphones, and if he’s sleeping, the guy next to you. (I’m kidding.) You can even run it over the upholstery of your armrest. You spent a lot of money for this trip and nothing will ruin it faster than a nasty cold or flu bug after you arrive.

  6. Noise canceling headphones I scoffed at these for ages, until I was upgraded to first class and they lent me a pair. Oh. My. These totally eliminate that background noise of the engines and you’re entirely unable to carry on a conversation with the over eager seatmate.

  7. Vitamin C lozenges These little bursts of vitamins keep your throat and mouth from drying out. When our sinuses and mouths are dry, we’re more susceptible to germs. Keeping yourself hydrated as well is another important way to keep from getting sick.

  8. Straws When you drink your water, the sucking action from the straw helps to keep your ears from plugging. It forces that swallowing action to makes them pop so you feel more comfortable.

  9. Packets of food Control what you eat. While there may or may not be snacks, you’re more likely to feel better after a long haul if you eat well and stay as close to your normal diet as you can. Bring individual packets of almonds, protein bars, or dried fruits to stay full. Avoid bananas as they can smell strong in small quarters and even other types of fresh fruit that leave you stuck holding a core or peel.

  10. Hand cream, lip balm and nose spray Again, keeping yourself hydrated helps to keep you comfortable and healthy.

  11. Reading material Don’t rely on electronics. Bring them, but be aware that during landings and take off you may be required to stow them. Just one magazine or small paperback of your own can keep your hands off that slimy one in the seat back.

  12. A large zippered nylon bag A collapsible bag that zips is a lifesaver. Put your nice handbag right inside it and zip it. Your belongings will be all neatly together and you won’t cringe when they make you put your favorite purse on the floor under the seat in front of you.