If you travel a lot, or if you’ve got a long-haul flight coming up – knowing the tips to fight jet lag can make the difference between a great trip and an I-wish-I-was-asleep trip. Flying across multiple time zones can really mess up your body clock, making you feel tired, groggy, hungry and probably ruining the first few days of your vacation while you try and adjust. Which means a few days where you’re not getting the most out of your travels. So fight off jet lag with these useful tricks and tips.
Relax your schedule before you leave
When it comes to your body, you have control. You can help out your jet-lag before you even get on the plane. If you relax your schedule a few days before you leave, you can train your body to be more flexible with sleeping times and eating times – which will make the whole transition even easier. If you’re someone who goes to bed and sleeps at the same time each day, try and vary your routine a bit. If you can, try and start training your body to your new time zone. Check what the time will be at your destination, and for the day or so before you are due to leave, and eat and sleep the way you would if you were already there. That way, you’ll be a day ahead of your jet lag by the time you land, giving you more valuable time on your holiday.
Avoid arriving at night
It’s no secret that the sun wakes you up – or, at least, it might make you feel a bit more awake. If you can, try to book a flight that arrives in the morning or in the middle of the day. This will make it easier for you to stay awake, as the sun will be out for a few hours. However, if you arrive at night, your body will want to sleep, and you’ll just take yourself off to your hotel room and dive onto the double bed and hibernate until the next day. Get yourself to your destination, get out in the sun and explore.
Keep yourself hydrated
Hydrate yourself. All of you. This doesn’t just mean drinking water. To ensure optimal hydration, keep your lips moisturized, if you wear contact lenses then clean your contact lenses before you get on the flight, use eye drops while you’re on the plane, and you can even spray yourself with essential oils and water. Also, of course, you need to replenish the water you lose up in the air. Experts recommend that you drink one glass for each hour that you’re up in the sky. Being dehydrated heightens your risk of feeling tired – which is something you don’t want on top of jet lag.
Prepare yourself on the way home
There’s only one thing worse than jet lag – and that’s two lots of it. If you’re going on a short trip, your body might have just got used to the new time zone before you shock the system again and fly back home. And trust us, it’s normally worse the second time. So once again, before you’re due to fly home, try and prepare yourself by getting into the new time zone, and following these other rules on the flight.