How To Make Flying a Little Easier.


There are a few things ordinary travelers can do that will make a long flight in economy class a lot less uncomfortable. Let me emphasize that this is my own personal list and some of the things that are important to me may be on no consequence to you. OK, here we go . . .
 
Pick Your Seat. You might not care where you sit, but I do. I much prefer window seats because if I can’t look out the window, I can get a little claustrophobic. (I also help the pilot during landings. They always seem to come in too low, so I grip the arm rests and pull up. It works every time.)
 
Dress comfortably. But don’t be a slob. On my last trip home to Hawaii, there was a guy wearing an old T-shirt, baggy shorts, and rubber slippers. That’s OK around the hotel, but on the plane it just says you got no class.
 
Bring a Book. How hard can it be? You knew weeks ago it was a five-hour flight, so how come you didn’t bring something to read? A couple of electronic games. Crossword puzzles. A smart phone with some pod-casts. Or did you want to be bored stiff for five hours?
 
Travel light. I see couples getting off the plane here on Maui with four huge bags. They’re only going to be here for a week, and they’ll be in shorts and T-shirts most if the time. How dumb is that?
 
Bring food. Unless, of course, you really, really love turkey wrap. One caveat: please don’t bring something that has a strong odor. Kimchee, for example.
 
Move around. Walk the length of the plane a couple of times. And, if you have some swelling in your legs, wear knee high compression stockings. I do whenever I fly and am barely aware that I have them on.
 
Drink water. Keep the fluids going in and coming out. And minimize the booze. At 30,000 feet, one or two drinks is plenty.
 
Talk to someone. Get a conversation going with whoever is sitting next to you. Nothing helps pass the time more pleasantly that a good conversation with an interesting person.