Honeymoon Travel Guide: 10 Essentials for a Long Haul Flight

March 31, 2014

long haul flight travel essentials

If there’s one thing I’ve learnt from doing so much travel, its that packing the right things can make or break the flight. Even the longest journey in cramped economy can be much more bearable if you go into it prepared. I wouldn’t dream of hopping onto a plane without any of these things now!

1. Headphones. The more noise cancelling the better! Screaming children, clattering trolleys and general aeroplane commotion can make even the most serene of travellers have a meltdown. Gareth has these Bose QuietComfort headphones and the more I travel the more I think I need to invest in a pair too. But whatever headphones you have, bring them. Goodness knows they’re probably going to be better than the crappy ones they give you on the plane!

2 A good hydrating moisturiser. Finding the best one has actually become a bit of an obsession for me! I bought this Clarins HydraQuench recently and its definitely the current front-runner. They also do a mask in the same range which would be great as a post-flight treat for your skin.

I adore this Hydraluron Moisture Booster stuff too. I wasn’t convinced when I first tried it, but a couple of days in and I was completely converted. It makes my normal-dry skin soft, smooth and just generally lovely.

I also just nabbed myself a Dr Dennis Gross Skincare Hydra-Pure Smart Spray to try the next time I fly. It looks great because you can actually use it on top of make up! See, I told you it was an obsession. Dry aeroplane skin is the worst!

3. I am 100% fanatical about Dr. Bronner’s Castile SoapThis shit is actually amazing. You can use it for everything from washing your face and body, to cleaning your clothes, washing your hair, and even cleaning your teeth! Now, instead of packing a million different products when I go away this is pretty much all I need (although in all honestly I haven’t quite been brave enough to try the teeth cleaning yet!) I like the peppermint one, although to be fair it’s the only scent I’ve tried so far. Remember to grab yourself a 2oz travel sized one if you’re going to bring it on the plane with you.

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4. I never leave for a flight in anything other than my go-to travel outfit. You want to be as comfortable as possible but also for your outfit to be easy to get through security with. So that means no fancy jewellery, buckles, belts or fiddly straps!

I always wear a 100% cotton maxi dress (avoid synthetic fibres because they can make you smell!) and my chunky All Saints boots (I have the flat version of these). I always travel in my boots because they’re so cumbersome that they take up a lot of valuable suitcase space. And always, always wear socks or tights! There is nothing more gross than having to walk barefoot through security!

I couldn’t be without my long cosy cardigan. Its suuuper comfy and I can wrap myself up in it like a baby in a blanket! Mine is from Monki via ASOS (sadly, it’s no longer available, although this one and this one are similar) and I love it more than life itself. Finally I wear a chunky snood that can double up as an extra pillow. I have this one from Pink Samurai on etsy. It’s the best!

5. I always make sure I have a little bit of make up with me too. No one really wants to land at their destination looking like they just got off an 18 hour flight do they?! I keep things minimal and simple though, I’m not entering a beauty contest. My staples are this Clinique BB cream, Lush’s Emotional Brilliance translucent powder and Smith’s Rose Lipbalm. I also always pack Simple face wipes and a roll-on deodorant so I can feel as fresh as possible when I get off the plane.

Obviously make sure everything you pack in your hand luggage is under 100ml/ 3.4 oz so that you can take them through security. I once lost a bottle of unopened, very expensive moisturiser because I forgot about that. As you can imagine I was not best pleased!

6. I discovered Dream Water completely by accident when I was delayed in Palm Springs and bored-browsing around the convenience store in the terminal. This was at the till point and the fact that it was ‘snoozeberry’ flavoured really tickled me so I bought one on a whim.

I’m sure like most people, I struggle to sleep on planes, but I also hate the idea of taking sleeping tablets. This is an drug-free remedy that promotes natural sleep. It certainly didn’t knock me out but it did help me nod off for a few hours. I’d liken it to a comforting mug of warm milk before bedtime!

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7. I couldn’t get on a plane without some form of entertainment. I never like to trust that there will be enough movies in the in-flight system that I haven’t seen, and once I get more than two films in I tend to get a bit over it anyway.

My laptop loaded with some 24, Vampire Diaries or Homeland is a must for me but you might want to grab your e-reader or tablet to get your entertainment fix. God forbid you won’t have any delays, but if you’re stuck in the airport – or worse still on the tarmac – for hours you’ll need something to pass the time too.

8. Sustenance! Juice, water (or coconut water) and some healthy snacks. I am completely obsessed with Pret’s Green Goodness juice at the moment. Obviously you need to buy your liquids after security, so I can only get this if the airport has a Pret, but if not anything healthy will do.

I always feel super gross if I only eat the processed, nuked crap they give you on the plane so I also always try to eat a decent meal at the airport before boarding. It’s boring but also limit the caffeine and alcohol while you’re travelling. In-flight hangovers are no fun at all!

9. Airports and planes are the biggest breeding grounds for germs and I used to always get a cough or cold when I travelled. Now I wont get on a plane without Boots Cold and Flu Defence Nasal Spray and a travel sized anti-bacterial hand sanitiser. Before you get on the plane, disinfect your hands and spray the defence stuff up your nose. Keep doing this regularly throughout the flight to keep those nasties away!

10. Buying a rucksack has been a life-altering experience for me this year! It’s much more comfortable to carry than a handbag and you can fit much more in it. So much so that I now never need to bring a second piece of hand luggage with me. Mine is from Pink by Victoria’s Secret and I love it so much I’ve all but ditched the designer handbags and have been using it as my everyday bag too. I am completely infatuated with it.

Do you have any other tips for surviving a long haul flight? And as a side note, has anyone ever tried this Skyrest Travel Pillow?! I saw it in a Skymall once and I feel like it would be an awesome, if not a little bit embarrassing, thing to sleep on…

Happy honeymooning everybody!

31 comments

  1. so funny! we just thought the same at the beginning of this year (have been waiting almost three years for our honeymoon) and started our japan trip at the beginning of march (three weeks! pure bliss!!!) 🙂

    looks like we had a lot of similar experiences… and even ate the same eki-ben 😀

    fell deeply in love with the country and hope to go back one day as there’s still so much more to discover 🙂

  2. Sinead Murray

    Hi, im travelling to japan in 2 weeks and can hardly contain myself. I have throughly enjoyed your holiday photos, especially the food lol. The bit I was most worried about was the trains but after ready your blog , ive download the maps me app and I can already tell it’s going to be a big help. So just want to say thanks for all the useful info 😀. O and I absolutely adore your ombre skirt, im determined to obtain one lol

  3. Post author

    Hey Sinead, the trains really aren’t that tricky if you plan your route in advance and give yourself plenty of time the first few times. Dont be afraid to ask for help if you get stuck. The people are so lovely!

  4. Ann-Marie Lodge

    On our honeymoon in Japan right now and have loved following your Instagram posts along the way! We seem to be just a week behind of lots of the things you’ve been doing, in Kyoto this week after our first week in Tokyo. We will be returning to Tokyo next week to end our trip, not before a quick trip Hiroshima and Mt Fuji, we’ve loved every minute of it!! The perfect honeymoon destination. Xx

  5. Joanne

    I love love love Japan. Like Kat said the people are so friendly. I thought they may be wary of me with my pink hair and tattoos but no they were fascinated and so happy to help. I was just in a train station and looking at the board when someone came up straight away. Can I help you. I loved the people. Japan is a wonderful mix of brash neon lights, with sounds of trucks going by with the latest Japanese pop to tranquil gardens and parks with pagodas and shrines. I can’t recommend Japan too much. Kat I loved all your tips and info x x

  6. fran

    We are looking into having our honeymoon in Japan, as is my long-life dream to go there! This guide is so useful, thankssss 🙂

  7. Laura

    Thanks so much for this Kat.
    We’re going to be boomeing our honeymoon for next spring in Japan so these tips are super helpful!

  8. Oh my! This looks incredible, a great post to read to help cure my burning wanderlust as I sit in the office on a Wednesday evening!! Japan is high on my bucket list, I’ll be sure to take a few notes before my trip there hopefully in the next few years 🙂 Lisa x

  9. Cassie

    Hi Kat, this is such a great guide. I’m off to Japan in 6 weeks for 2 months of travel and you’ve answered so many of those little questions I had about travelling and ordering food. Your pictures are lovely too – you’ve inspired me to get going with the photo booths too. 🙂 Thank you so much!

  10. Brilliant info Kat – thanks!!

    We’re looking to book our Japan honeymoon soon, but the thing I’m struggling with is whether to book through a travel agency or book everything separately ourselves. Booking ourselves works out cheaper, but I’m a little concerned about not having anyone ‘on the ground’ to help us when we’re out there!

    x

  11. Ali

    Love it! We went to Japan in Nov 2014 and dos Tokyo, Kyoto, Hiroshima, Osaka, Koyasan and Mt Fuji so quite a similar route! We’re planning on going back for our honeymoon. This time a a good week in Tokyo and some time in Okinawa hopefully. We can’t wait.

  12. Great photographs, they really bring Japan to life. They are so vibrant and colourful. I so want to follow in your footsteps and head there. One day, I hope!

  13. Post author

    I booked everything separately and it was totally fine. All the hotel staff spoke great english and we didnt have any troubles at all!

  14. Wow Kat!! It was so lovely reading this post! I’ve lived in Japan for years and all the information and photos you shared will be sooooo useful to someone who has never visited before. I’m so thrilled you had a wonderful experience soaking in the romance of Japanese Spring time. Next time you visit, you should definitely try during the summer when there are thousands of colourful and crazy festivals across the country(even though the humidity is INSANE). Or visit the southern most parts of the country (places like Yakushima/Kagoshima) where you’ll find yourself trying to create new words to describe the beauty of nature. it was so lovely to reminise about my time there looking at your photos on Instagram You were very kawaii(cute)! xx

  15. Helen

    I love this so useful. I have 3 children and planning trip to Japan as family of 5 next year. Did you come across any families from England with small children ?

  16. Kathy

    I found the Hyperdia website to be invaluable when planning train journeys. Like you we didn’t get wifi for the phones and relied on the hotels (most of which have free wifi, even the backpackers we stayed in in Jimbocho). Just takes a bit of forward planning – before you leave the hotel work out where you’re going and plug it into the website. Get your results and take a screenshot of it, then you use that to navigate the beautifully colour coded underground.

    http://www.hyperdia.com/en/

    We also used Suica cards (like Oyster cards) to get around most of the time. Very easy to recharge at the train stations and the staff at the stations seemed very used to tourists not having enough money on the cards.

    So pleased to find someone else who loves the ticket machines! I think it’s a brilliant thing, and not quite knowing what you’re getting is half the fun. Would love to work out a way to quit my day job and bring these across to Australia. It’s fantastic.

  17. Pamela

    We went to Japan last year for holidays, it is the most amazing place! My boyfriend proposed at Mount Fuji, most amazing day of my life, can’t wait to go back, would recommend it a million times over 🙂

  18. Risa

    Loved following along on your journey! Those Gudetama and Mameshiba videos mentioned on Insta are sooo great

  19. Japan in AMAZING! We did a very similar route to you guys but also went to Nikko for a night which is a national park and stayed on Naoshima Island for a night which I would highly recommend

    One thing to note for anyone reading… You have to buy the raik pass BEFORE you travel, it’s only available to tourists and you can’t buy them once you’re in Japan… As we found out too late! Luckily we worked it out with my friends family in the end. You’ll probably say that in another post but just in case 😊

  20. Hey!!!!! I’m traveling around Japan now and right now staying in Ryokan up in the mountains near the snow monkeys. Amazing experience. I completely agree with everything you said in your article. One of the thing I could add to that Japanese people are terrible in giving directions.xx

  21. Sammy

    There are a few things I would like to correct.

    Tipping is not considered to be rude, it’s simply not done. But no one will think oh this rude foreigner.

    In addition, the railpass is extremely useful but the taking two trips advice can be a big misleading. I’ve used Shinkansen were a one way trip was only about 3000 yen… The JR pass would have been overkill!

    Last: Streetfood os actually not that plentiful… Osaka + Fukuoka and some festival/tourist attractions are the exceptions. But compared to like Thailand and Taiwan? Very scarce.

    But I’m glad you had a great time, Japan is a beautiful country

  22. Suzanne

    Thanks so much for all the amazing info! My husband and I fly from UK to Tokyo next Wednesday and will travel round for 3 weeks. Your instagram and this post have been making me even more excited.
    I am worrying a little bit about our luggage size though, having read various posts that you really must travel light. But I noticed your luggage is not tiny as some would suggest. Do you mind if I ask what size your luggage was? And if you found a big bag to be a problem? I want to make sure I have plenty of space for all the amazing things we will inevitably buy while we’re there. Thanks! xx

  23. Post author

    Suzanne – haha I never travel light! It was a bit of a pain in the arse on the subway as a lot of them just have stairs, not escalators, but Gareth very kindly carried it up and down them for me. There are services you can use where you can send you luggage ahead of you when you travel if you’re worried though!

  24. Claire

    This is fantastic, thank you Kat! We can’t afford Japan for our honeymoon (it’s our dream destination), so we’re heading to Scotland for our ‘mini’-moon in June then saving the pennies to hopefully get there in a year or 2 and I’m sure your great tips will come in handy! Glad you had a wonderful time x

  25. Saxyrunner

    This is so perfect! We are honeymooning to Tokyo and Kyoto in June, and I’m so dang excited! Thanks for this informative post.

  26. Jess

    Amazing!!!

    We’re going on our honeymoon to Japan in November. My partner has been before, but I haven’t so I’m beyond excited. Having trouble finding places to stay though. We’re going for three weeks and don’t want to blow all our cash on accommodation. Some nice places will be stayed at, but for the most part we’re trying to stick to around $125AUD per night….not sure how we’re going to accomplish that!

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