Today’s guest post is from L.L. Hall. L.L. is a flight attendant with a major airline and lives with her husband and kitties in the Rocky Mountains. When she’s not jet setting around the world you can find her geeking out on science books or exploring the hiking trails near her home.
Health Tips from a Flight Attendant
Air travel is fast and convenient compared to the boats and trains of the past. But with all long distance travel involving enclosed spaces, germs abound and so do the chances you could catch something from your fellow travelers.
As a flight attendant I can’t afford to get sick every time I go to work, so over the years I’ve found some tips and tricks for having a happy and healthy flight.
Drink water. This isn’t rocket science; it’s pressurization. You can even bring your own water bottle and refill it instead of buying expensive bottled water. Yes, TSA will make you pour it out, but most airports now have these awesome water fountains with filtered water you can refill it at once you get past security.
If you care about your largest organ you will need to carry hand cream. Not lotion. Lotion has alcohol in it which will continue to dry and irritate your skin in a pressurized metal tube hurtling 500 mph at 35,000 feet above the earth’s surface. I prefer the shea butter hand cream by L’Occitane. A little goes a long a way.
If you’re going to be on a flight for more than four hours you should carry a face mist. There are plenty of DIY tutorials online to make your own. Just be sure to keep the carry on liquid limits in mind, no items more than 3.4 oz and all must fit in a quart size bag.
If you’re going to be on a flight for more than eight hours feel no shame pulling out your face mask. People might think you’re vain but you won’t look fifteen years older when you land.
Bye Bye Germs
Hand sanitizer and wet wipes. Yes, that means wipe off everything around you. The armrests, the tray-table, your video screen, and especially your window and wall area if you’re by one.
Drink water. Seriously. Drink it. Not only is hydration important for everyday health it’s extremely important when you are in dry air that has been recirculated.
Keeping your body well hydrated gives it one less thing to worry about in keeping you healthy. Don’t let fear of having to use the bathroom mid-flight leave your body hurting for some water.
Take a multivitamin if you don’t already take one daily and ideally start doing so a few weeks before your flight. And if your travel destination is a much higher altitude than you are used to, take chlorophyll starting two weeks before your trip and until you get home. It acts like extra red blood cells in your system and increases the amount of oxygen available to your body.
There’s an Oil for That
Use an essential oil immunity blend to help fight off germs and support your body in what it knows how to do. Rolling some on pulse points before your flight or holding under your nose for some aromatherapy mid-flight are both great options.
Keep those Shoes On
Wear your shoes in the bathroom (plane talk aka lavatory). Yes, that’s pee on the floor. No, the bathrooms do not get cleaned mid-flight.
Other Tips for a Happy Trip
Bring your own food. The flight crew will of course serve you some snacks but if there is turbulence or other issues that prevent them from being able to serve snacks you don’t want to be left hungry.
Pretzels and peanuts are also not the most filling of foods and their high salt content can make dehydration worse. Pack a few granola bars (Lara bars are a great option), some fruit, or unsalted nuts like almonds to keep yourself full and happy.
Bring your own entertainment. Not all planes have an In Flight Entertainment (IFE) system and there are many places over the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans that are not covered for WIFI. Bring a book. Download a movie onto your own device. Be prepared.
Mind Your Manners
Say please and thank you. Being a flight attendant can often be a thankless job. A smile, a please, and a thank you can go a long way to brightening their day.
Don’t be That Guy
Don’t put your feet on the armrests of the passenger in front of you. I know you would never do such a thing…but you’d be surprised how often this happens and makes for a miserable experience for the person that suddenly has feet on their arm rest.
Also another reminder to use those wet wipes and hand sanitizer.
Travel Mental Health
For some tips for good mental health when you fly go visit Peaches and Passports, How to Avoid Travel Anxiety on an International Trip