We’ve all been victims of that dreaded jet lag, arriving at your desired destination fighting to stay awake or struggling to fall asleep. You might as well kiss the first day of your holiday goodbye, that pesky time difference and your body clock being messed around is hard to beat.
Until now – we finally have the answer! Get ready to book those faraway destinations, with our handy tips to avoid and get over jet lag, you’ll be itching to fly somewhere dreamy.
What is jet lag?
Our bodies tend to stick to routines, this can cover everything from what time you go to sleep to when you should eat your dinner. So when we move through different time zones this can upset the balance and mess with how your body functions.
There’s more to jet lag than just feeling tired or suffering insomnia though, you may be shocked to know that other symptoms can be anxiety, nausea, difficulty concentrating, indigestion and headaches.
How long your jet lag lasts will depend on the number of zones you travel through, as well as your age, health and stress levels. But on average it can take around three to five days for your body to adjust.
Fly away Dreamliner style
Step one to your jet lag prevention is easy, pick the right airline.
The Thomson Dreamliner has come to your rescue with the dynamic LED mood lighting. This fancy feature adjusts the lighting in your cabin to reflect the time of day in your destination, starting to adapt your body to the time difference as soon as you take to the sky.
You’ll feel refreshed after that long-haul flight with impressive facilities such as less aircraft noise, taller ceilings, more seating options and improved air filtration. All these advanced features work together to help your body cope and adjust to your destination’s time.
Put new routines in place
Step two, get in the right frame of mind.
Believe it or not, you can mentally prepare yourself for your new time zone, days before you fly. If you usually go to sleep at 11pm, try snoozing at 11pm in the time of your destination instead. The same goes for eating and other daily routines you may have.
It’ll also help to change your watch to the local time too, that way you’ll be ready to take on your new location and your brain will be familiar with the timing.
Do NOT nap once you arrive
Step three might be the hardest of all – no napping.
Despite how tempting it is to lie on your hotel bed and have a cat nap after a long flight, it’s one of the worst things to do if you’re hoping to avoid that groggy jet lag feeling – unless you’re lucky enough to be arriving at night.
As the saying goes, west is best and east is beast, probably because it’s much easier to add hours into your day than it is to take them out.
When travelling west you’ll gain several hours, giving your body the extra time it needs to adapt. It also means you have to force yourself to stay awake well past your bedtime at home, but at least you’ll sleep like a baby at the correct time and you won’t lose any time in your chosen destination.
Flying east will leave your day shorter due to your chosen destination time being several hours forward. Your body will be trying to wake up when you’re forcing yourself to sleep, but not to worry, if you choose your flight times wisely, you can reduce those affects.
Try landing yourself a flight that arrives early evening in your destinations local time, that then leaves you only a matter of hours away from bedtime. For the best results, try to avoid sleeping in the second half of your flight.
Say no to the bar
Step four, the last hurdle before you reach your destination.
We know a pre-holiday glass of wine is calling your name but if you want to avoid a hangover after several hours on a plane, it’s a no go!
Drinking before or during your flight can worsen jet lag, especially as the effects of alcohol are increased at a higher altitude. Alcohol also causes dehydration, mixed with flying this could leave you longing for water, a disrupted sleeping pattern and headaches.
Lastly, make sure you play it right when you land.
Natural light is a great way to fight jet lag as it resets your internal clock and almost forces your body to adjust to its new time zone quicker.
Depending on the time you arrive, you should try to fall into swing with the destination’s time of day. If it’s night-time, try to sleep and if it’s day, get out and smell the fresh air.
Instead of moping around the hotel room tired, head out and explore your surroundings, once you step outside you’ll soon feel more alert and ready to take on some fantastic sights.
It’s also a great idea to participate in some light physical activity, so heading out on a walk around your resort will get your blood moving and increases your heart rate after hours of travel, this leads to a boost of energy.
Now you’re ready for your next long-haul flight, check out our exclusive deals and put our top tips to the test. Here’s a few long haul deals to get you started.
Flying west we have front-runners Florida and Cuba.
And flying east, you’ll find cultural Thailand and the sandy shores of Vietnam.