Modern travel doesn't exactly scream hygge. From snaking check-in queues to crammed-in seats, you usually arrive so knackered you’re ready to drop.
Try these hacks to make the time in transit feel less budget and more Kardashian-private-jet, so you land feeling ready to make the most of every second OOO.
Dodging unpredictable airline food by bringing your own can help prevent bloating and even beat jetlag. "Eat a high-protein meal at a time corresponding to morning at your destination to help sync your body with the new timezone," says nutritionist Dr. Marilyn Glenville. "Great options include egg or tofu to help promote wakefulness and attention."
If you’re on the red eye, Dr. Glenville suggests sleep-inducing carbs such as oats or rye bread, "or go for chicken, mozzarella and pumpkin seeds which are sources of amino acid tryptophan, which our body converts to melatonin, the hormone released at night to make us feel sleepy."
Exercise your mind
We all know you’re meant to get up and walk around during a long flight, but what about exercise for your mind? Avoid feeling frazzled from too much screen time by downloading apps Headspace and Buddhify (free on Android or iOS). When you’ve had your fill of in-flight entertainment, do guided meditation to achieve a state of calm at 32,000 feet.
For fans of transcendental meditation, air travel is one of the few times it’s okay to practise for longer than 20 minutes. Repeat your mantra as much as you want, to touch down feeling super chilled.
If you’re anxious about travel or feeling generally stressed, aromatherapy oils can help bring a sense of calm. Expert Emma Powles says: "Lavender can calm, relieve stress, alleviate inflammation and aid sleep. Frankincense helps to discharge toxins from your liver and kidneys, so it gives your general health a great boost. While peppermint improves mental focus and is an excellent ‘pick-me-up’, so apply to your wrists once you’ve landed."
Or try Aesop’s Ginger Flight Therapy, a pulse-point therapy roll-on with soothing ginger root and uplifting geranium.
The temptation is to nod off as soon as your seatbelt is fastened. However, Dr. Neil Stanley, author of How to Sleep Well, says that can lead to fatigue, indigestion and concentration problems. The best way to make sure you feel good when you arrive is to sleep according to the light/dark cycle outside.
"Keep the window blind up and if it’s light stay awake and when it goes dark try to sleep," says Dr. Stanley. "On a night flight ignore the meal service and get straight to sleep. Eye masks, ear plugs and travel pillows can help, but try before you buy to make sure they feel comfortable."
Losing your usual eating routine + stress + sitting down for ages = disrupted digestion. Bloating or cramps are the last thing you need at the start of your holiday. Beat them by drinking plenty of water and packing a flask of herbal tea in your hand luggage.
Choose a type of tea that soothes, such as peppermint to aid digestion or chamomile to help sleep. But avoid drinking the boiling water on board if you can – cabin crew steer clear of it because they’re unsure how clean the water tanks are. Which is a lovely thought.
How many times have you gone on holiday and immediately got ill? Your 9-5 means your body constantly produces stress hormones, like adrenaline, which can help to ward off infection. Once you relax, these levels drop, making you vulnerable to illness – plus travel means being close to lots of viruses.
Nutritionist Cassandra Barns says your travel diet can also act as an immunity shot. "Turkey is a great source of zinc, which helps boost immunity to protect you from any new viruses you come into contact with," says Cassandra. "Carrots contain beta-carotene which the body converts to vitamin A, another vital nutrient for immunity."