How to survive your first long-haul flight

Last month I crossed the Atlantic Ocean for the first time. Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t sailing through the dark waters of the ocean for 60 days in an attempt to beat the Guinness World record (the first voyage crossed the Atlantics back in 1522) but had my first ever long-haul flight from London to Cuba.

For this year’s holiday we decided to go somewhere far away and a city of Holguin in Cuba seemed like a perfect choice. On the day of booking, I was informed by Thomas Cook that our flight will last just under 10 hours. To someone like me who finds it difficult to sit on a short European flights, entertaining myself for 10 hours seemed like a big challenge. So I thought I should do research on how to survive a long-haul flight. The internet has lots of useful material, I read this and this articles on Pinterest and thought there were fantastic. It took me some time to figure out exactly what I should put in my luggage to make the most of the tiny 6kg allowance.


At the end of my research, I found that there were three must-have categories that you need to have on your long-haul flight.

Toiletries and cosmetics

Personal hygiene items are must have on a plane. Antibacterial gel, hand cream and face wipes helped us stay fresh throughout the flight. I’ve also put a bit of make up, including eye cream, lip balm and a body spray. Having these toiletries helped me feel like a normal person.

Toiletries and cosmetics


Preparing my entertainment took me the most time. From finding the right book to read, to downloading new series and music. Just before our flight the Amazon Instant Video released an option to download movies for offline watching – this was a real treat! Spotify’s offline listening mode was also handy as I quite like looking out of the window and listening to some acoustic tunes. If you intend to use your electronics throughout the flight, make sure to buy/bring a portable charger. We used Josh’s charger for the flight to and from Cuba and didn’t need to worry about our iPad batteries.

If you’re a reader, you can definitely get a lot of free time to enjoy your book. For me it was difficult to concentrate whilst reading so I preferred listening to music and watching my series.



I read a lot of articles which said that food on the plane is full of carbs and sodium that make you dehydrated. Therefore, I looked into bringing healthy snacks that would provide us with enough proteins and would keep us full for longer. We had two Eat Natural bars each on the flight in and then on the flight back. We also brought our own bottles of water as water on the plane was obviously overpriced. 750ml water bottles were just about right and protein bars were yummy!


Overall, I was surprised with my endurance and the ability to keep myself busy for a long period of time. When we landed and got to see the transparent blue waters of Cuba, I knew that the flight was worth it, so absolutely worth it!


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