6 Ways to Pass the Time on a Long Flight

Time can seem to drag on a long flight and it can make matters worse if you don’t have any way to relieve the boredom. If you’re travelling by yourself or not sitting with a friend or family member to chat to then you need other ways to entertain yourself. The excitement of reaching your destination and getting your holiday properly underway may keep you occupied for a while but here’s some other ideas, to hopefully keep boredom at bay.

1)      Read

  • Get your head into a good book and the hours will fly by.
  • Choose something you’ve wanted to read for ages or a book with lots of short chapters so it’s harder to put down.
  • Hardback books and large books can be heavy and take up lots of space so take a tablet or e-reader (remember the charger). You can have a few books to read that way.
  • If you prefer lighter reading then read the in-flight magazine or buy copies of your favourite title. Your eyes may be tired from travelling and it’s easier to flick through magazine pages.

2)      Get digital

  • Watch a film. Most long haul flights have in-flight entertainment. Films can vary from old classics to recently released blockbusters. If none of the films are your cup of tea you might enjoy one of the documentaries instead.
  • Take your own device. If there’s no in-flight entertainment or you’re not taken with the options on-board use your own tablet or mobile, loaded with your favourite shows and films. Just remember to take your charger with you as there’s usually charging sockets on the plane.
  • Listen to your favourite music on your mobile or mp3 player. Alternatively, plug your headphones into the in-flight entertainment system and listen to one of the pre-programmed radio stations. Headphones may be provided or can be purchased.

3)      Be creative

  • If you want to escape screens and there’s no Wi-Fi why not take the opportunity to use your creativity? Write a blog or begin a diary about your trip. How about writing a short story about your destination or about people on the flight?
  • Anyone can easily pass the time by drawing and doodling. Use a napkin if you don’t have any paper and choose some fragrant felt-tips or glitter pencils to add to the fun.
  • Colouring isn’t just for kids, it’s proven to relieve stress so pick up a colouring book and go for it.

4)      Be practical

  • Read a travel guide or listen to a podcast about your destination. Learn some facts about where you’re going and make notes about what you want to see and do when you get there.
  • If you’re travelling for business it’s the perfect time to get some work done, as you’ll have fewer interruptions and distractions compared to the office.
  • If you’re on a return flight, relive your happy holiday moments by looking at your photos. Use the time to start deleting any duplicate photos or ones where someone got in the way or the lighting was too dark. Then as soon as you get home they’re ready to upload on Facebook or Instagram.

5)      Get gaming

  • Get downloading. If you’ve downloaded games on your tablet or mobile you’re guaranteed hours of fun. There might be some games on the in-flight entertainment too. Popular games include Tetris, Angry Birds, Candy Crush, and Minecraft (for the kids).
  • Give your brain a workout. Try a puzzle book like Sudoku or take a quiz book. You and your travelling buddy can take turns testing each other’s knowledge.
  • Look out the window; can you pick shapes out the clouds? Count the snowflakes on your window, it helps you relax and rest your eyes.
  • Challenge your partner/friend/family to a card game. No cheating though.

6)      Take care of yourself

  • Get some shut-eye if it’s not going to cause jet lag. It’s a good idea to check the time difference and read about jet lag so you know whether to sleep on your flight or not. It can be an advantage once you arrive at your destination. Take an eye mask if it helps.
  • Go for a walk. It’s advisable to stretch your legs and keep the blood flowing on a long flight.
  • Hydrate. The plane air can be dehydrating for your body and skin. Drink plenty of water during the flight and look after your skin. Pack a mini face cloth, moisturiser, lip balm, toothbrush, toothpaste and deodorant in your hand luggage. Freshen up before your plane descends so you look awake and feel revived, ready to begin your holiday.

Do you have any tips on keeping entertained on a long flight? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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