Is it real? Has our adventure really, truly begun? We may be slightly delusional from sheer exhaustion, but it hasn’t seemed to dampen the love-at-first sight feeling we officially have for New Zealand. We arrived at 7:00AM, after a 21 hour journey from Minnesota and somehow managed to hike to a volcano, have coffee at two cafes, grocery shop and explore Auckland, all before 1:00PM.
Naturally, I attribute such stunning resilience to the perfectly planned carry-on that kept my skin hydrated, my body fresh and had me sleeping soundly over the Pacific Ocean.
Below is my list of necessities for a manageable, and dare I say, slightly enjoyable long haul flight:
- Eye Mask – Those pesky screens in the back of each seat are great for entertainment, but when you are ready to sleep and your neighbor is watching The Hobbit, slip on your eye mask and slip into darkness.
- Ear Plugs – As luck has it, you will likely be stuck behind a crying baby or screaming toddler, but all that can vanish in a moment if you remember these tiny little miracles.
- Chapstick – All that dry air and mouth breathing can do a number on your pucker, make sure to reapply as needed.
- Unscented Baby Wipes – You don’t want to smell like a baby, but you do want to stay as fresh as possible. Use these to wipe off any makeup before you drift off to sleep, cool off your neck and basically take a shower before you land.
- Clear Skin Hydrator – Jam packed with beeswax, sweet almond oil and jojoba, this creamy concoction will keep your face hydrated as your circumnavigate the globe.
- Chaga Eye Serum – The natural way to combat puffiness, dehydration and a couple of wrinkles.
- Comfrey Tea Lotion – I just love all this natural hydration, and here is another favorite. It’s all homemade and will heal your dry skin with tender loving care – and a good dose of comfrey leaf extract.
- Water Bottle – I honestly have no idea how people don’t die of dehydration on a long flight without their own water bottle. I make sure to fill it up before the flight and ask with my sweetest smile for the flight attendants to refill throughout the flight.
- Sleep Aid – It could be Tylenol PM or melatonin, but have a pill or two packed to help you drift into dreamland for as many hours as possible.
- Wool Socks – It’s already bad enough that you have to sit in one spot for a million hours, but you shouldn’t have to be cold and crabby, so pack your warmest woolies.
- Tooth Brush/Tooth Paste – Don’t use the water from the plane to brush, unless you like dirty water, but do have your teeth cleaning equipment along so you can kiss your long-lost love without restraint.
- Deodorant – Easy way to feel refreshed on a flight, without a lot of effort – practically zero effort in fact. Wear deodorant, you don’t want to be the stinky neighbor.
- Favorite Tea – If you are as obsessed with tea as I am, there is a chance you will keel over if your consume Lipton, so plan ahead and pack your favorites.
- Headphones – Watch your movies, television shows and listen to relaxation music with the comfort of your own headphones.
- Relaxation Music – Perfect for falling asleep with crying babies and snoring old men.
- Extra Undies – Quite possibly the best feeling ever after sitting in a single spot for half a day.
- Book – It may entertain you or it may put you to sleep, either way, it will make time go by quickly.
- Pen – If you want to get out of customs as quickly as possible, fill out your customs form while on the plane with that spare pen you had laying around the house.
- Snacks – Bring a granola bar or two, pack some trail mix or snack on fruit – just bring something, because no one likes to be hungry for hours on end.
- Contact Case/Glasses – Nothing will dry out the eyes more than hours of blinking recycled air, pack yourself a small container of contact solution and a case.