5 Things You Can Bring to Make Air Travel Comfortable Again

The whole matter of how “inconvenient” and “awful” air travel has gotten is a bit old, don’t ya think? I mean, when did it stop being amazing that we could be freezing our bottoms off at -20F in Wisconsin one minute, and four hours later, bikini-clad on a fabulous beach, drinking a mai tai?

Photo by Charish Badzinski. 


Sure the food on planes is bad, or non-existent. But often those who complain about that food are the same people who line up every noon at VendoWorld outside the break room, and invest their hard-earned dollars in hermetically-sealed gastrono-mares. Sure, there are rude employees. Do you work with anyone like that? And yes, the seats are small with little leg room. They’re still far more spacious than a rush-hour ride on the Lexington lines in New York, and you have the option to buy more space. You do! Oh, and the long wait before your flight is the perfect time to down a couple cocktails and relax. Admit it, most days, you’d kill for that!

In my mind, it’s time to stop complaining about it, and take personal responsibility for your own comfort. Here are the 5 Things You Can Bring to Make Air Travel Comfortable Again:


1. Something to make you look good. 
Elevate! Dress up a little. Yet, do it while keeping an eye on comfort (choose dresses with some stretch to them, and fashionable, yet comfy shoes.) I’ve heard an RBG can get bumped up to first class this way, though I’ve never yet had the honor. I can’t wait for that day! And in the meantime, it’s fun to look good. People treat you differently than if you show up to the airport in jeans and sneakers. Try it and report back.

2. Something to drown out the noise. 
I like my iPod, loaded with good tunes, This American Life, or a book on tape. I’m looking forward to one day getting a snazzy pair of Bose noise-cancelling headphones. They are a splurge, but if you’re at all nervous on planes, you know the changes in sounds can make you tense. Not to mention the crying toddler behind you. If you can’t afford noise-cancelling headphones, I’ve found the in-ear headphones, like those made by Skullcandy, work well too.

3. Something to fill your stomach. 
Usually, I opt for comfort food at the airport, and there’s no shortage of that. But these days, even Wolfgang Puck has airport locations. Who wanted that crummy coach food anyway? It reminds me of that joke, “Oh, the food here is terrible! And the portions are so small.” Hook yourself up, and dine like a queen, on something you actually want to eat.

Airline food may not be this good. Take it upon yourself to eat well, even
when traveling. Photo by Charish Badzinski. 

4. Something to make you comfortable. 
I love my inflatable neck pillow and my light-blocking eye mask. These, with the noise-cancelling headphones, ensure swift and relaxing slumber. That’s right, sleep. How I make it happen depends on number 5.

5. Something to take the edge off. 
As a nervous passenger, this is essential to me. Whether it’s a prescription from your doctor, or a self-medication session at an airport bar (Or, scandal! Both.) do something nice, and help make the journey a teensy-weensy bit easier on yourself.

You’ll arrive fresh and lovely as the goddess you were when you boarded the plane. Wheels up, baby!

What are your must-haves for air travel?

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Charish Badzinski is an explorer, foodie and award-winning travel and food writer. When she isn’t working to build her blog: Rollerbag Goddess Rolls the World, she applies her worldview to her small business, providing strategic communications, media relations and writing support to individuals and organizations. 

Find Charish on Twitter: @charishb
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Creative Commons License
Rollerbag Goddess Rolls the World by Charish Badzinski is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at rollerbaggoddess.blogspot.com.
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