Unless you’re travelling first class, flying, particularly on the no-frills airlines, can be almost as unglamorous as it gets. You often leave horribly early in the morning, you spend ages in queues at the airport and then you’re squashed into an airline seat for hours on end.
But I want my flight to be less like this…
And a lot more like this…
Fortunately there are things you can do to make your flight more glamorous than grim.
Ever had one of those moments when you realise that you’re doing it all wrong? A few years ago I was queuing up to board an Easyjet flight with two small children. The kids were whining and mucking around, I was feeling stressed about getting us seats together on the plane and trying to balance a cup of coffee with one hand and wipe a child’s nose with the other. Then I looked up and noticed the immaculately dressed woman at the front of the queue. She was carrying a Longchamp bag and flicking through a copy of Vogue, looking as if she was about to walk into a first class cabin, not onto a budget airline.
It got me thinking. She clearly didn’t see the flight as an ordeal to get through. She was acting as if she was travelling first class. And why not? Since that moment I’ve realised that you can make your flight as glamorous as you want it to be. You’ll feel less stressed and enjoy the flight a lot more if you follow these ten tips to make you feel as if you’re flying first class when you’re stuck in standard.
Pack a gourmet picnic
Packing a variety of foodie treats is guaranteed to make your flight feel a lot more luxurious, especially when everyone else is either gazing mournfully at their plastic tray of airline food or ordering an overpriced sandwich from the air hostess.
Bring along a selection of your favourite sandwiches, some fresh fruit, carrot sticks and dips as well as pudding treats like mini cheesecakes or chocolate mousse. If we’re flying over breakfast time I’ll always buy some juices, yoghurt pots and pastries from one of the cafés at the airport. Setting it all out once we’re in the air makes breakfast feel so much more special.
Be stylish but comfortable
Wear clothes that look good but make sure that they’re comfortable enough to wear for a long period of time. I usually opt for smart, but not tight, trousers, with a long-sleeved top and a jacket I can put in the overhead locker. Avoid wearing fabric that’s easily creased.
Create the perfect in-flight toiletry bag
When you fly in business or first class, you’re given a wash bag filled with a couple of toiletries, usually a toothbrush, lip salve and hand cream. Why not go one better and create your own personal toiletry bag complete with all those things designed to make you feel special? I always pack hand cream, a hydration spray, tinted lip balm and eye gel in a nice wash bag. Make sure you don’t bring anything bigger than 100ml and transfer it into a clear plastic bag to go through security at the airport.
The low humidity inside an aircraft cabin means that moisture evaporates from the body more quickly when you’re flying and this can lead to dehydration. You can help combat this by drinking lots of water – it’s best to avoid alcohol and caffeine. Buy a big bottle of water in the airport lounge after you’ve gone through security.
You can help keep your skin at its glamorous best by applying a moisture serum on your face before you travel and regularly using hand cream, lip balm and a hydration spray during the flight.
Wear a scarf
I always wear a scarf when I’m flying, usually a pashmina or a scarf big and soft enough to double up as a luxurious blanket if the air conditioning is too fierce. It can even be folded up to use as a pillow if you want to go to sleep.
Bring along a small make-up bag
The cheapest flights often leave horribly early in the morning so if I’ve had to get up really early I won’t put make-up on. You can get away with tinted moisturiser, a tinted lip balm and an under eye concealer with a light reflector, like the YSL Touche Éclat pen at that time of day.
It is nice to look a big more glamorous when you arrive so I always pack a mirror, mascara, a small eyeshadow palette and a cream blusher that doubles up as a lipstick to apply before landing.
Pack it all in a gorgeous bag
Carrying a beautiful bag always makes me feel more glamorous so I pack everything I need for the flight in a handbag large enough to fit it all in but stylish enough to make me feel good. It’s helpful to have a bag with compartments in which you can slot your passport and ticket. There’s nothing very glamorous about being that person in the boarding queue who has to empty out the entire contents of her bag in order to find her boarding pass. I speak from bitter experience.
Be as comfortable as you can on the flight
It’s really important for me to feel comfortable if I’m going to be stuck in a small space for a long period of time. I always take my shoes off as soon as I get on the flight and put on soft, comfy socks. Cashmere socks are the most luxurious choice.
Keep the children entertained with quiet activities
There’s nothing less glamorous on a flight than having to cope with bored, hungry and irritable children so be sure to bring along healthy snacks and plenty of activities to entertain yours. We really like the Usborne sticker books, wipeable activity cards and plenty of books.
For more ideas, take a look at The Dos and Don’ts of Flying with Children
Treat everyone to new magazines
I always buy a magazine to take on a flight, sometimes two if it’s a long flight and I want to save one to read beside the pool on holiday. The children always choose a magazine for themselves as well and they’re not allowed to peek at it until we’re on the plane so that they’ve got something new to look at. We all pack books too – flying can be a great time for a good long read.
What about you? Do you have any tips on making your flight more glamorous?