Every regular traveller has their own unique routine for flying, honed over years of work trips and overseas holidays. They know exactly what to do before, during and after a flight to ensure maximum comfort and minimal jetlag.
But travel can take a toll on your body — whether it's through exposure to germs, or simply a lack of sleep.
Here are my top tips to stay healthy while you travel:
Catch plenty of zzzzs
Having a successful travel experience starts long before you board — even the night before. Getting some shut-eye during a flight is always good, if you can manage it. But get a head start by making sure you have a great night's sleep the night before you travel. Don't leave packing and planning till the last minute — scoring that pre-game beauty sleep is way more important.
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Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate
Start pre-flight and drink plenty of water in the 24 hours leading up to your departure. Take a couple of big water bottles on board with you as well (take empty bottles through security and fill them up on the other side) and work your way through them during the flight. Say yes to any water or juice offered by flight attendants. And drink plenty after you land as well to flush your system. You'll feel so much better for it.
Bring your Jandals
Pop your jandals into your hand luggage to wear to the loo during the flight. They're much easier than squeezing your shoes back on, and nicer than walking on the grubby floors with your bare feet or socks.
Don't be tempted by tasty treats
Indulgences like alcohol and salty foods should be avoided if you want to skip major puffiness and water retention. They may taste good in the moment, but they're doing nothing for you in the long run and will just dehydrate you further. Stick to water and fresh fruit, and save the treats for after you land.
Keep germs at bay
Aircraft are full of germs — catching a cold or flu while you fly is common. You'll be sharing a cramped space with a lot of dirty surfaces (think the tray table, the toilet flush, and even your seatbelt buckle) and a lot of coughing humans, so protect yourself by washing your hands thoroughly, and wearing a breathing mask.
Maddy Scarf is the founder of Tecmask, disposable face masks that protect against airborne germs. tecmask.com
Win a Tecmask
To help you stay healthy on your next holiday, we have 20 Tecmasks to give away. To be in to win, we want to know all about your top travel wellness tips. Email us at
. Competition closes Sunday, January 19. Standard NZME terms and conditions apply.