How to be Comfortable on Economy Air Travel (updated May 14, 2016)

Flying long haul flights can be exhausting and draining, so today, I will give some suggestions how to make your flight more comfortable without the luxury of business or first class treatments.

Take a shower before you get to the airport

Taking a shower before your flight really helps, especially if you have a long flight. If there is a delay at the airport, you never know how long you may be stuck there, so it is best to be as fresh as possible before heading to the airport.

Brush your teeth

Along the lines of taking a shower before heading to the airport, I would also suggest brushing your teeth while you are at the gate waiting to board the flight. Also, you may want to brush your teeth during the flight, especially after a nap. You want to stay as fresh as possible.

Wear comfortable clothes

The lighter the clothes the better, as long as they are comfortable, such as loose-fitting shirts, comfortable jeans, a hoodie, basically anything that is not tight against your skin.

Stay hydrated

I know the temptation is to drink alcohol, coffee, tea, or soda. But the best thing to drink is just water. I know it is boring, but it is also the best way to hydrate yourself. It is very dry on the plane, so you will get dehydrated more easily, so it is very important to keep drinking fluids during the flight.

Lip Balm / hand cream

Also along the lines of dryness on the plane, you will want to keep your skin hydrated before you start cracking up.

Reserve a Good Seat

I personally love window seats, because I like looking outside, but also being able to lead against the wall. However, do not underestimate aisle seats. Having easy access to the toilet and the extra leg room usually comes in handy. Basically just avoid middle seats unfortunately.

Use a pillow or head restraint

The more comfortable the pillow, the better. Sleeping sitting up is not the optimal way to fall asleep, so you will not get as good a rest as you would if you were lying down. So you want to help your body feel more comfortable any way possible, and a pillow is a great way to help. Though try to avoid using the inflatable ones.

Bring headphones or earplugs

Ideally the noise cancelling headphones are the best to help you block out all the noise, especially the engine noise.

Sleeping mask

The darker it is, the deeper the sleep you can be in. Just like noise cancellation, you want to eliminate the light around you as well when you sleep. Especially when the person next to you insists on turning on their mini light to read a book or someone left their window open with the sun shinning in.

Move around

It can feel stiff to be in the same position for a long period of time, so it is always a good idea to get up to allow some blood circulation. Stretching is also helpful.

Take off your shoes

I know this may not be a popular one. Simple way to solve this is the bring fresh socks on your carry-on. Taking your shoes off really feels more comfortable, especially if you want to take a nap.


Delayed flights can be extremely frustrating. So be prepared to stay on the plane longer than expected. If you constantly budget your time based on the planed itinerary, be ready for disappointment. There are too many security factors to consider when flying, that it is very difficult to stay on time. So just be mentally ready!

Any other suggestions? Please let us know in the comment section below!


  1. This goes not only for economy class. Stay calm! Delays happen! Becoming stressed and even worse, taking it out on airport/airline employees, will not make the plane leave earlier. If the pilot decides there is a mechanical issue I’m glad it was discovered on the ground, not at 33,000 feet. Popping an aneurysm from sky high blood pressure will only slow you down even more 🙂

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