Jet lag for most travellers is an unavoidable pain that most holiday travellers simply put up with, but just imagine the jet lag experienced by business travellers and frequent flyers that are constantly in the air for weeks at a time. Regularly warping into a time zone on the other side of the world in a few short hours takes a lot out of you but the good news is jet lag can be greatly reduced. I will share with techniques that for me have reduced Jet lag significantly.
Jet lag tip number 1 – live the time zone of your destination
Jet lag I have found can be greatly reduced but living the time zone you are going to, (that’s if you have this luxury), I find this works best on route to your destination on your plan and when you arrive at your destination.So say you have a flight from LA to Sydney you should set your watch to local time in Sydney, and if its 10Pm in Sydney and that is the time you normally
sleep then try to sleep. Many people including myself swear by Melatonin tablets to assist with sleep but I highly recommend speaking to your doctor to be informed of any side effects to taking melatonin. In the US melatonin is not a prescription drug as it is natural so this can be purchased of the counter.
Personally my number one tip for trying to get sleep is to use noise cancelling headphones. Before buying a set and using them I sometimes had troubles getting sleep on board, this is obviously because of cabin noise, but since buying a good set of noise cancelling headphones I have rarely had a trip when I could not get a decent sleep, noise cancelling headphones to put you in
another world away from the noisy cabin.
I own the Sennheiser PXC 250 with NoiseGard technology; they are extremely compact (foldable) and offer great noise cancelling performance for a reasonable price, I highly recommend them for any traveller.
If its daytime at your destination you have been awake all day and are trying to live tip number one then you might need to drink some caffeine (not too much or you will break tip number 2) you can also try working or watching a movie to help stay awake. When you arrive atyour destination and its daylight ensure you get out in the sun for at least 30 minutes also ensure you get some exercise, and again try going to sleep at whatever time you normally go to sleep at.
Jet lag tip number 2 – Avoid Dehydration
Jet lag is caused just as much by dehydration as it is by having a disrupted sleep pattern, on a long haul flight there are three main causes of this:
- Insufficient hydration (not drinking enough water) it might be a pain with the waiting line to the toilet stretching what seems into the next class cabin, but this is really important. I recommend drinking 1.5X to 2X my normal water intake before during and after flying. With most countries and airlines limiting the volume of liquid you can bring on board, this makes things a little harder. But these new laws don’t restrict you from bringing on board an empty water bottle and getting it filled by the cabin staff once you are in the air. I have never had any troubles getting my own water bottle filled, and refilled several times during a long haul flight.
- Alcohol & caffeine consumption is another major cause of dehydration and jet lag, it might be hard to say no to those that free glasses of wine, beer or spirits, but try to limit your consumption to only one standard glass for a short flight and no more than three for a long haul flight, follow a glass of alcohol up with a glass of water. If you can I highly
recommend totally eliminating alcohol consumption you will feel much better for it in the days after you arrive at your destination.
- Planes environment The final cause of dehydration and Jet lag is flight itself, you are put into a tube with 300-400 other travellers and flying at an altitude where there is very little water in the air, there is very little you can do to combat this fact apart from ensuring you remain hydrated as above.
I hope you found this article on Jet lag valuable, please leave a comment with any tips or suggestions you have for combating jet lag.