Whether you’re a seasoned traveller or only fly occasionally, you’re likely to experience jet lag at some point. Here are some tips from Skyscanner Australia to help minimise the impact of jet lag.
There’s no one cure-all tip to avoid jet lag and, ideally, the process should start when you’re planning your flights. From the time you fly to your diet and what you do when you land, there are a number of different steps you can take to reduce your jet lag – or avoid it entirely.
Avoiding jet lag begins when you book your flight.
1. Book the right flight.
It’s best to try and book a flight that flies from east to west. The flight path you take can significantly impact your circadian rhythms which makes you feel more jet lagged. Travelling east will go against your body’s usual routine, meaning you’re more likely to feel jet lag.
2. Arrive in the morning.
If you can manage it, book a flight that will arrive in the morning. Arriving in daylight will help you stay awake and avoid the temptation of falling into your bed straight away upon arrival.
3. Consider a stopover.
Take advantage of the layover and book yourself into a hotel for the night.
Breaking up the trip with a stopover will help your body to adjust and is also a great chance to freshen up and sleep horizontally for a little while. If you can afford a few days out of your trip, it’s a great way to see a new place and bulk up your holiday.
Here are some other tips from savvy travellers to help you explore the world better:
Pre-flight procedures to avoid jet lag.
4. Adjust your sleeping times.
Go to sleep an hour earlier or later or wake up an hour earlier or later each day in the lead up to your flight.
In the days before your trip, think about adjusting your normal sleeping habits to be closer to those of your destination. This will help minimise the shock to your system when you reach your destination.
5. Don’t stay up late.
A late night bed time before a flight is just going to exhaust you.
It may seem logical to stay up all night before a flight, but this rarely works out as planned. Try and get a good sleep before a flight and don’t stay up packing into the early hours.
How diet affects jet lag.
6. Water is your friend.
Staying hydrated is crucial when you travel.
The importance of water in avoiding feeling like rubbish at the end of your flight should not be underestimated, so drink up.
7. Stay away from booze.
Staying hydrated is important and alcohol is not hydrating, as you’ll learn when you’re hungover.
As cute as the mini liquor bottles are, it’s best to stay away from alcohol when on a plane. The altitude will cause you to feel the effects of alcohol much more than when you’re on the ground. A hangover plus jet lag isn’t pretty.
8. Say no to coffee.
Like alcohol, coffee is not a drink that helps you hydrate.
Drinks high in caffeine are not your friend when you travel. Coffee, caffeinated drinks like energy drinks and soft drinks will keep you awake and make it hard for you to recover from jetlag quickly. Swap the coffee for a herbal tea or a big glass of water.