Travelling abroad is a wonderful experience; not only because it gives you a great conversation topic, which can turn you into the centre of attention for a long while, but mainly because it makes your life richer.
Visiting different countries fills you with experiences, views and memories, helps you to make friends and leads you to understand lifestyles and ways of thinking that may differ from yours, but that are equally valuable.
Furthermore, with low cost airlines, like “vuelos VivaAerobus” in Mexico, Vueling in Spain or Ryanair in many European countries, travelling to foreign lands has never been cheaper.
There is only one possible inconvenient with this kind of trip; the famous and always uncomfortable jetlag. That name has been given to the weird mixture of fatigue, confusion, irritability and occasional dizziness that overcomes you when traveling within different time zones. You can lose a whole day of vacations due to the discomfort that jetlag causes. One may be too tired to go out in the morning and suffer a night of insomnia, and if that continues, you will feel almost as bad the next day.
The good news is that some preventive measures can help you to avoid this problem. Here are some tips to follow before, during and after the plane trip.
Before boarding the plane
- Wear comfortable clothes.
- Arrive to the airport with plenty of time before your departure. Thus you will be more relaxed and prepared to rest during the flight.
- Have a light and nutritious lunch.
During the flight
- Entertain yourself with a relaxing activity. You may read, listen to music, watch a movie or whatever that helps you to enjoy the flight.
- If you are on a late flight, try to have your normal sleep hours. I know that normality is hard to achieve, when you are on a plane with another hundred people, but you can use devices such as earplugs and a mask to avoid light.
- Drink plenty of cold water, so you won’t suffer dehydration, but avoid ice and coffee.
- Stretch your legs and arms when you can and feel the need to do so. Make gentle circular movements with your neck and ankles and walk, if you feel to do so.
After the flight (at your arrival)
- Adjust your watch and your devices (like cell phone and tablet), the minute after landing, so you will have an immediate idea of the local time. Try not to wonder what time may be at the place of your departure.
- If you arrive during the day, take a shower and engage in some pleasant activities; go out for a walk, have lunch in a nice place, go shopping. Remain awake for as long as you can. If you arrive at night, try to sleep or at least rest, even if you don’t feel tired.
- Wake up with the sun the next day, do some exercise, like swimming in the hotel’s pool, and have a good breakfast, to start the day with lots of energy.
If you are a frequent traveller or have a really hard time with jetlag every time you cross time zones, ask for medical advice. Melatonin is a natural substance that helps to adjust the sleep and wake cycle, but you should take it under medical advice.