For a lot of us out there (including ‘ME’), air-travel is all about fear, boredom and anxiety. The fear of claustophobia, the fear of being packed in like sardines with a bunch of unknown faces around you and the fear of unforseen turbulence and discomfort, your feet swelling up, your throats getting parched. As if that wasnt enough, there’s more to the never-ending list of fears and anticipation- the fear of being stuck in a middle seat with fat fellow travellers who snore or burp, the fear of your luggage not boarding the flight along with you, the fear of inordinate delays and learning to sleep in cold, impersonal airports and more, which I do not wish to list down! (at the risk of sounding paranoid!)
However there are a few things I have learnt about making air travel more comfortable and smooth. Much as you may have heard or discovered a few, almost all of these usually work wonderfully for a hypertense traveller like me.
Tip no.1- A lot of my friends say, reading is the best way to get throught long haul journeys. But I kind of disagree. For anyone suffering from the slightest amount of motion sickness, this could be ‘bad news’.It is always better to resort to your i-pod. Listen to all the songs which bring back happy memories and tranquils your mind and in turn slows down your pulse rate. So rather than focussing on the roaring sound of the engine, focus on melody which soothes your nerves and takes your mind off the turbulence and fear.
Tip no.2- Do not ever make the mistake of having cold sandwiches or orange juice or any citric fruit juice before you board a flight. It can cause a lot of acidity. And ofcourse the anxiety factor will only enhance your acidic levels. This can cause heart-burn, uneasiness and may also lead to nausea. A better option is to always go for a nice toasted or grilled sandwich with a cup of warm tea (preferabily green tea or camomile as camomile can really soothe the nerves). Avoid going for coffee or tea with milk.
Tip no.3- Look out of the window. Remember, there is a world outside your plane window.It actually offers some of the most stunning views of mountain ranges and cloud formations. A crimson sunset sky is probably the most sensuous sight to behold.
Tip no.4- Get talking. Listen to your instincts. If you happen to find an interesting co-passenger, no harm in starting a conversation. A lot of times we meet very interesting people on-board. People who may be like-minded, creative and engaging. you might just find a friend for life or a person to network with.
Tip no.5- Befriend your service crew. Air hostesses and in-flight staff endure long hours of duty and deal with a lot of messy passengers. So they are always pleased to find pleasant passengers who may like to have a conversation with them. And trust me, they go out of their way to make you feel comfortable. Besides you get to hear of interesting places and people.
Tip no.6- Remember, shopping is the best stress buster! focus on all the yummy duty-free stuff
Tip no.7- Get yourself a blanket and sleep. Long Haul flights are the best reason to catch up on sleep. Most of us lead extreme hectic lives, packing in a dozen things things each day. Most often our job lists and deadlines take a toll on us and unwillingly we are forced to compromise on sleep, leaving us perpetually sleep-deprived.
Tip no.8-Food. Never leave your stomach hungry for too long. Keep eating small portions of snacks. Have a fresh lime soda, a virgin mojito or even a cola (it always works for me, makes me feel refreshed). And most definitely have lots of water to keep yourself rehydrated.
Tip no.9-Wear a nice perfume. The right kind of fragrance can really be an uplifting factor. Just dab your favourite perfume on your wrist. It will take all the fatigue away.
Tip no.10-Last but definitely not the least-Think. Contemplate. Meditate. Air travel gives you a lot of time to yourself. Use this time to calm yourself, to introspect and to find the inner quietness within yourselve. Let go off unnecessary worries and anxieties. Focus on happy memories and positive thoughts and tell yourselves- you are lucky to be able to see this absolutely wonderful world!