What should you pack to enjoy the same level of comfort as the travellers in the pointy end?
A long-haul flight is never easy, especially if you’re in economy class. Although time doesn’t go any faster flying in the pointy end — first class —there is an extra level of comfort offered to the passengers that makes the journey more, well, pleasant. (Apart from the extra space – you can’t change that in economy class.)
With a little bit of pre-planning, you too can enjoy the extra comforts of first class in economy.
Here’s our list of must-have items to transfer the luxury from the front of the plane to the back.
1/ NOISE CANCELLING HEADPHONES
Photo Credit: Sonic Electronix
These are a mandatory offering in the premium cabins, and they work a treat! Not only for an improved sound quality to enjoy the inflight entertainment, but also to drown out any aircraft or surrounding passenger noise (example above).
Unfortunately, the quality of headphones offered in economy class is poor — very poor. The type of poor that forces you to squash them hard against your ears to comprehend the muffled sounds of your chosen movie. And in economy class, the added benefit of blocking external noise is important if you plan on getting some rest.
Nowadays, there are a lot of noise-cancelling headphones available and at reasonable prices. Independent UK have done the hard work for you and put together a list of the 10 Best Noise-Cancelling Headphones.
If you don’t have a chance to shop before your next flight, stop by Duty Free to grab some before your flight.
2/ COMFORTABLE CLOTHES
Premium cabin passengers love nothing more than being offered a pair of pyjamas to change into, regardless of time in which they are flying – day or night. There is something extravagant about boarding your flight and changing into some loose, comfortable pyjamas.
Now, we’re not suggesting you pack your stripped boxer shorts (men), or satin slip (ladies); a pair of loose pants and T-shirt or long-sleeve top is a suitable option.
Choose something light in fabric but dark in colour. You want fabric that breathes to avoid overheating, and a darker colour to hide any accidental spills of food or drink.
Photo Credit: Singapore Airlines
3/ EYE SHADES
Decent amenity packs in economy are a dying breed; many airlines have even stopped handing these out, but they usually have some on hand if requested.
In first class, the eyeshade is made of a soft material that feels lavish across your eyes; compared to, a scratchy, cheap, plastic, below-grade eyeshade that may be available in economy class.
But you too can have elegant softness draped across your eyes.
If you’re planning on getting some rest on the flight – even sitting up – then you’ll need to get comfortable, and getting comfortable most likely includes taking off your shoes. (I mean, you don’t sleep with shoes on normally, do you?)
If you’re taking off your shoes, well, your footsies may get cold. Fact.
Pack some thick socks to keep your feet warm and cosy.
OK, people. We need to talk.
Going barefoot to the bathroom is not acceptable nor advisable.
The cabin crew work tirelessly trying to keep the bathrooms clean for you but it’s not always possible. And not all of your fellow passengers are going to be considerate and clean up their ‘mess’ for you.
For hygienic reasons, you need a form of covering for your feet to protect you.
Problem solved: slippers.
A handy hint: If you stay in hotels frequently, stash away some of the disposable slippers; otherwise, invest in some that you can keep permanently in your in-cabin bag as your ‘flying’ slippers.
6/ A WRAP OR LIGHT BLANKET
This one may be more relevant for the ladies out there, because we all know that men and women operate on a different thermostat.
As a woman, I feel the cold, especially on an aircraft. In the premium cabins the blankets are thicker, sometimes two or three times thicker. And in first class you’ll most likely be given a duvet.
Not only is the economy blanket thin, it’s usually small, and it barely covers you from chest to floor (especially if you’re vertically challenged). A small shawl or light blanket will add an additional layer, or help cover the areas that fall short.
7/ A NECK PILLOW
It would be very unlikely that you would see someone in first class using a neck pillow. Why? Because they either have a multitude of cushions to make a cocoon of softness or a full-sized fluffy pillow…or both.
A neck pillow is your answer to creating a soft oasis for your head to rest gently against.
Photo Credit: Relax The Back
What are your must-pack goodies that make your flight more luxurious and comfortable?