It doesn’t matter how excited you are to be going abroad or how much you love flying, long-haul flights can get really boring really quickly.
A combination of screaming kids, rowdy stag dos and the fact that you just CAN’T GET AWAY FROM IT ALL FOR ONE BLOOMIN’ MINUTE isn’t your average traveller’s idea of fun.
A simple way to make a flight more enjoyable would be to fly first class, but if that’s not an option for you, take a look at our top 10 top tips for boredom-busting activities that would keep you entertained even if you were flying to the moon and back.
1.Learn a language (the basic stuff anyway)
Now’s a good time to scribble down all those foreign phrases you promised yourself you’d learn BEFORE you set off. There are loads of free apps you can download to learn a language the fun way, or failing that – the last few pages of guide books usually have some key sentences thrown in to help you out.
2. Pack a sleeping kit in your hand luggage
It might not sound like tons of fun but there’s no better time to catch up on those much needed ZZZs than during a long-haul flight.
Don’t forget to pack your eye mask and earplugs to block out the inevitable noise from your fellow passengers. It’s a good idea to pack a comfy donut pillow to avoid accidentally sleep-drooling on your neighbour’s shoulder too…
3. Read your travel guide and plan your trip
Planning a trip and going over everything you want to do once you’re there can be almost as fun as the trip itself.
Some travellers spend hours doing that well before their holiday, others just don’t seem to find the time.
When you’re cooped up on a long-haul flight you have all the time in the world; so get planning and get excited!
4. Write an in-flight meal review
Airline food: whether it’s delicious or disgusting, there’s usually plenty to be said about it. In fact there are blogs dedicated entirely to reviews of in-flight food from airlines all over the world.
Take some arty (or awful, depending on what’s been put down in front of you) photos and show off your culinary critiquing to the world.
5. Live Tweet what’s going on around you (you’ll need in-flight Wi-Fi for this one)
Tempers can get frayed when people are cooped up together in the sky for too long, but don’t let that get you down; just live Tweet it. Some passengers’ Tweets have gone viral over the last year with their hilarious live accounts of couple’s rows, passenger feuds and even the odd heart-warming tale to lighten things up.
6. Listen to music
Before you travel, make sure your phone/iPod is full of your favourite albums or
new releases so you can get your headphones in and enjoy your own personal party. Listening to music is also a great way to zone-out if you’re a nervous flyer and want to forget that you’re soaring through the air at 40,000ft.
7. Catch up on your reading
Curling up with a good book (or e-reader) is never a waste of time, particularly if you have your favourite drink to hand. Make sure you pick something that will keep you absorbed so you can stay inside your cosy book-bubble without distraction.
Not in the mood for a novel? There’s a reason airports are always full of trashy celebrity magazines.
8. Play games
If you’re travelling with friends or family, make use out of them by playing cards or puzzles. Or, if you’re travelling alone, download some fun apps to keep yourself entertained.
Make sure you put your headphones on if it’s a noisy game though – no one likes THAT passenger.
9. Make use of the in-flight movies
Long-haul flights usually have the latest movies available on-board so this is a great opportunity to watch the films you haven’t gotten round to watching at the cinema yet. If there’s nothing there that takes your fancy, try something you wouldn’t normally watch.
There’s no time like the present to explore new things, particularly when you’re going to be stuck in the same seat for the next nine hours.
10. Take the perfect cloud picture from your window seat
Is there anything more uplifting to know than that for every single rainy day you’ve ever spent on earth, the sun has always been shining just above the clouds?
Everyone loves taking a cloudscape photo – why not take it further by starting a collection of stunning photos from every time you fly?