The Ultimate Long Flight Essentials: 12 Items For Every Flight

January 22, 2024
5 mins read

Taking a long flight is never an easy thing for us. When I was younger I used to sleep through flights. From the moment the plane turns on its loud engines till the moment the wheels are touching the ground again, I would be sleeping. And I wasn’t that young, it even happened in all my flights in and around Asia.

Unfortunately in recent years the sleeping magic doesn’t work as well and I find myself looking for things to do through the flight. When it’s a long flight it’s even worse.

Lately we experience more turbulence in flights than previous years and that doesn’t help.

So here’s everything we learned from our experience that is long flight essentials for an easy and smooth flight.

12 Long Flight Essentials

Noise Canceling Headphones

I’m pretty sure that’s actually the most important item on this long flight essentials list. Planes are usually pretty loud, flight attendants are always moving around, people getting up and sitting again, and the noise coming from the engines are all factors that probably will make it hard for you and your mind to settle down and relax.

Noise canceling headphones will easily block all the noises and help disconnecting from your surroundings to a more relaxed place, in your mind, obviously.

You can listen to music, watch a movie or a show or just put them on your ears to do the trick.

Make sure they’re sitting in/on your ears comfortably for long hours of using.


Another way to detach yourself from your surroundings is a good book. The kind that sucks you in the story and you can’t put down.

The reason why I prefer a kindle rather than a physical book on flights is that the kindle is small and light and can carry many books at once. A book will be heavier and bulkier so taking it in and out of your backpack will be harder.

On top of that, having a variety of options to read from on a long flight will allow you to read according to the mood and preference that might change through the many hours you’ll be spending on the plane.

Bluetooth Adapter

If you have wireless headphones you can’t connect to the plane streaming screen. A bluetooth adapter will solve that. That will allow you to enjoy the entertainment the plane has to offer like movies, shows, podcasts, and more, and so this should definitely be one of the long flight essentials you take with you.

You can connect the bluetooth adapter to the audio socket on the chair in front of you usually, then connect the headphones to the adapter.

Chargers and Travel Adapters

To make sure all your devices will keep working through the flight, bring your chargers. There’s usually a power outlet to plug them in if you are on a long flight. The problem is that sometimes the outlet doesn’t fit and you wouldn’t be able to plug your charger in.

Get a travel adapter so you can charge your devices anywhere you go. It’ll come in handy in the airports as well.

Portable Power Bank

Sometimes the power outlet is shared with another seat or it’s positioned in a weird angle and it’s hard to reach. For the chance it happens, and to make sure you can keep using your devices through the flight, bring a power bank. Make sure it fits the airline guidelines before going on the flight.

Skincare Kit

Sounds fancy, and you can definitely make it fancy if that’s what you like, you are going to have so much free time ahead of you. But I mean more basic things for the long flight essentials list. 

Flying can make your skin very dry, and staying in this environment for many hours can become very uncomfortable. Pack with you a small, travel sized moisturizing lotion for the body and hands, and a small lip balm. 

Eye Mask

If you can’t fall asleep in a lit environment, bring an eye mask. Your neighbor has the option to turn on his private lamp and sometimes he would use it on and off and on again. In other times, when it’s time for food and drink services the flight attendants will turn the lights on in the plane. And so, it wouldn’t always be fully dark and having an eye mask will help you a lot.

Another perk of the eye mask is in the case of a chatty neighbor, having the eye mask on will give the guy the perfect subtle hint.

Water Bottle

Number one thing in being healthy is drinking your water and staying hydrated. Being on a flight is no exception.

Usually you can’t pass security with water, but they have no problem with empty water bottles. Bring one with you and fill it up in designated areas after you pass the security line.

My favorite water bottle is the one that can keep my water cold through the day and for many hours. Another option is collapsible bottles to save some space in your backpack.

Travel Sized Toiletries

If you’ve experienced long flights before you know that uncomfortable feeling of time leaving on your body. 

Bring a small toothbrush and a travel sized toothpaste to brush your teeth before you land to freshen up a little. You can also bring a travel sized deodorant or perfume, and maybe a face wash to make you feel a little bit better.

Backpack And Side Bag

To hold all of your long flight essentials and more you can bring a carry-on if you want or a duffle bag, but in my opinion a good backpack is the most comfortable option. It’s the best option for your body and back to carry around everywhere, it’s usually more organized inside and easier to fetch things inside.

We also like to take a small side bag, like a fanny pack for example. I usually put in there my passport, headphones, kindle, hand lotion and other small things that needed to be easily accessible. 

It helps a lot when you’re on the flight and your backpack is already tucked under the seat and harder to reach. 

Scarf Or Shawl

I like to use a piece of clothing, either a coat or a scarf, as a pillow or a cover to stay warm. I know, there airline usually provides a blanket and a pillow but the pillow is not always comfortable and the blanket sometimes isn’t enough, so it’s always good to have backup.


My headphones are over the ear, so even when I just put them on without connecting it to anything, the noises around me are blocked. There are some headphones that do noise canceling but only when they’re on and playing. Sometimes you just want to chill without listening to anything. If that’s your case, bring some earplugs with you.

Make sure it sits well in your ear, comfortable, and doesn’t fall. Test it before you fly.


Flying is not the most comfortable experience, you are going to be stuck with many people in a closed, small environment for a few hours, sometimes a few more hours then you would like to.

To make sure your flight is as smooth and enjoyable as possible, prepare in advance. Download music, a show or a movie, or even some podcast episodes. Get the essentials written above and wherever else works best for you, and be prepared with our long flight essentials items.

Don’t forget, at the end of it is the beautiful destination you can’t wait to visit! 

If you have your own long flight essentials that we didn’t mention here, tell us! We always look for ways to make our travel experiences better.

Looking for more travel tips and tricks? Here’s our one spot for all our tips.

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