Expert advice on how to have the perfect flight from Travel + Leisure's top travel advisors.

By Scott Bay
October 30, 2020
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Between security lines, potential delays, and hours of sitting in the same seat, air travel can be a challenging part of any getaway. That's why we've asked our A-List, Travel + Leisure’s group of the world’s top travel advisors, to share their tips and tricks for making a long-haul flight easy. Read on for their expert advice.

"Picking the right plane and seat is important, as is choosing a reasonable time for your departure, connection, and layover times. Not all premium economy, business, or first-class seats are the same — not even within the same airline." Keith Waldon, Departure Lounge

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"I always travel with my cashmere shawl. It's light and easy to put into my purse, and it keeps me warm and cozy. I also always pack my folding slippers, so I can be comfortable from beginning to end of the flight. Never leave without a book that you're already very interested in, so you have something to read and enjoy." — Ruth Turpin, Cruises Etc. Travel

"I frequently travel between China, the U.S., and the U.K. On these long-haul flights, I do my utmost to minimize jet lag. To help achieve this, I time my arrival at the destination for about 4 p.m. That way, whether or not I have slept during the flight, I will stay awake on landing until at least 9 p.m., so that my own body clock has the best possible chance of coinciding with its new time zone from the day of arrival." — Guy Rubin, Imperial Tours

"If you have the means, charter a plane. The Crystal Skye, one of the world’s largest and luxurious private jets, is complete with lie-down seats and a stand-up social lounge where it's possible to have wine tastings at 30,000 feet with Salvatore Ferragamo."Malaka Hilton, Admiral Travel

"Boscia’s Super-cool De-puffing Eye Balm is a must-have for long journeys. It uses all-natural ingredients, like licorice root and turmeric extract, to soothe eyes, so you can actually look alive upon arrival. I also like to carry Aura Cacia’s Chill Pill Roll-on essential oil blend. I apply the oils to my palms, rub my hands together, and inhale the calming, citrus-mint aroma — it really helps to relax me during the flight." Marion Miller, Micato Safaris

"Bring a supply of wax earplugs and a cashmere hoodie with a big enough hood to pull down over your eyes. With these two items, I can sleep pretty much anywhere, including row 38 beside the busy toilet!" Paul Irvine, Dehouche

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"I fly a lot with my young children and what helps for a comfortable flight is to make them comfortable. We chat about the experience as far in advance as we can. They get very excited about the simplest things, like seating assignments and the onboard entertainment system. I make sure to advance order the kids meals, so their food is delivered before the rest of the plane, and then try to mimic our at-home bedtime routine." Cassandra Bookholder, Camelback Odyssey Travel

"Feeling relaxed and comfortable while in the air is a top priority for me. I always write out a list of all my daily plans and itemize my outfits before packing. I always travel with two scarves of well-worn silk for my neck and a pashmina for my shoulders. They are a comfortable, fashionable, and a sanitary alternative to the airplane blanket. Also, compression travel socks are a comfort that help my legs and feet maintain circulation." Jennifer Wilson-Buttigieg, Valerie Wilson Travel