7 things you need for a long flight

Megan Pinckney | 5/19/2017, 3:04 p.m.
Whenever you are flying across the country, or across the world, being prepared for a long flight is the best ...
Travel essentials Megan Pinckney photo

Whenever you are flying across the country, or across the world, being prepared for a long flight is the best way to get through one. The airlines do their best at preparing for your basic needs. However if you want a comfortable journey to your destination, there are a few things that you should have easily accessible in your carry-on. Some things may be more obvious than others, but that doesn’t make them any less important.


Headphones are a necessity for any long flight. They cancel out the noise on the plane, serve as equipment for preventing ear popping and allow you to hear your entertainment. They give you the feeling of being in your own little bubble, as if no one else is around. The wrong headphones, however, can cause quite a bit of distress during long flights. If I plan to be on a flight for an hour or two, then I do not mind wearing earbuds, or in-ear headphones. However, if my trip is scheduled to be longer, I make a point to pack my traditional headphones. After a few hours, earbuds tend to irritate the inner ear and will eventually begin to fall out. Yet, not all traditional headphones are ideal either. It is best to find a pair that is larger than your ear, as they tend to cause pain if they sit on top of your ear for the duration of a long flight.

Neck pillow

Most everyone has seen a neck pillow clipped to someone’s suitcase or for sale at the gift shop, yet not everyone has felt the need to own one. If I’m being completely honest they usually are not necessary. However, if you are planning to take a flight that lasts for five or more hours, I would definitely suggest splurging for the neck pillow. Chances are on a flight that long you are going to nap. But the sad truth is if you do not have a neck pillow it will be one uncomfortable nap that you’ll continuously wake up from thanks to all the nodding your head will do. And if you are lucky enough to stay asleep, sans neck pillow, you’ll awake from that nap aching.

Light jacket + socks

Now that it is starting to warm up outside we are all beginning to wear fewer layers. Although warm weather and sunshine are great, they tend to play a role in travelers dressing inappropriately for a flight and therefore being miserable while in the air. Airlines tend to keep planes very cool, especially in the summer months, so shorts and short dresses are not the most ideal fashion choices. Trust me when I say there is no worse feeling than being cold and unprepared on a plane because there is nothing you can do about it. Usually airlines only have a few blankets, and they are reserved for first class. Packing a light jacket will give you the ability to keep warm when you become cold. Also, be sure to pack a pair of socks, especially if you’re