Long journeys can be exhausting, annoying or… fun and relaxing; it all depends of how you choose to make them.
Now… where I live, I takes me more that 12 hours (14 and a half hours, to be more precise) to go home. And no, I don’t live on a different continent, it’s the same country, the cities are about 500 kilometers away. The problem is that the railway system is so old and it takes roughly one day to cross the country from East to West by train. Of course, by car there are only 8 hours or so. Anyway it’s a lot of time spent sitting on a car or train seat.
Giving the facts above mentioned, I have developed the natural ability to create time-consuming activities and list of items to make your journey more pleasurable.
Let’s start with hygiene, because on a long ride there will be lots of germs.
1. Wet wipes
As I said, germ are everywhere, especially in public transport such as airplanes or trains. There are lots of options out there: you can choose the ones that have alcohol as an ingredient or just antibacterial ones. I don’t like the alcohol ones because I usually use the wet wipes for my face as well, and alcohol around your eyes are big no, no.
Here’s for what you might want to have a small (or big) pack of wet wipes with you:
- wipe your face of sweat, remove make-up;
- wipe your armpits to remove that sweaty smell;
- clean up things such as that small table on the airplane/train before you put your food on it;
- clean your hands before & after having a snack.
2. Tissues / dry wipes
It will sound funny, but if you don’t have these with you, you will end up in very weird situations like a runny nose in the mid of July or you will step in a dog poo while you’re rushing to the train station and so on. So make sure that they’re in your handbag. Also you might encounter the unpleasant situation when there is no toilet paper at the loo. So, are these reasons enough to put a pack or to of tissues in your bag?
3. Hand Sanitizer
You can substitute this with wet wipes, but it can help “wash” your hands everywhere, it is quick and easy. Not to mention that they come in many forms: liquid, spray, foam and so on. In case you get a scratch, you can wash your hands with the hand sanitizer and you will be safe.
4. Thermal Water
I highly recommend thermal water for summer. There might be cases when the air conditioning system broke down and you’ll have to face an 8 hour journey during summer without air conditioning.
I love the thermal water spray from Avene; it’s easy to use, it refreshes your face instantly and you will feel much better.
Tip: don’t be shy and use the thermal water for other body parts such as arms, neck, cleavage and so on. Your face is not the only area that needs to be refreshed or hydrated.
5. External battery charger
What would be a long journey without our smartphones? Beside that fact that they do a lot of things, smartphones are really crappy when it comes to battery life – especially iPhones.
I don’t know about you, but I drain my phone’s battery in 4 hours or so and I have to charge it because I’ll die of boredom if I don’t. Trains and airplanes usually have sockets where you can charge your devices. There are also adapters for cars and you can charge your phone using the USB cable. But for those situations when these options might not be available, better be safe than battery drained and take an external battery charger with you. Oh, and charge it full one night before the departure. I don’t know why, but they need about 8 hours or so to completely charge.
Tip: An iPhone has a battery of 1500 – 1800 mAh. An external battery of 4000 mAh will charge your phone twice completely (if the battery is fully charged as well). Google the capacity of your phone battery and choose the external charger based on your needs (or charges needed :) ).
For music and entertaining yourself on the long journey.
Although I find them very useful, after some time they get very uncomfortable. You can choose to take two pairs of headphones and switch them from time to time when they get uncomfortable.
7. Travel pillow
On a long journey you will want to have some sleep. It won’t be the best nap ever, but it will be better than nothing and you can take some items with you that will help you. A travel pillow is a must for long journeys when you have to take a nap.
Tip: For a better nap, try a face mask and some ear plugs. They can do wonders!
They are not just for summer! They protect your eyes from shiny, glowy snow that can snow blind you. They protect your eyes, prevent early unwanted wrinkles and also hide those sleepless, dark circled eyes.
I won’t take a lot of space to sneak a tampon or a pad in your bag, even though it’s not that time of the month. You never know what can happen or who might need it.
10. Sickness pills
When I was a kid I was a terrible car traveler. I would get sick and my parent would have to stop for half an hour or more for me to get well back. Car rides were one of the nightmares of my childhood, but now, somehow I got “cured” and I don’t get sick while I travel by car, plane or train. Although, I’ve noticed that I don’t feel comfortable on ferries.
Anyway, if you know that you have things like movement sickness while traveling go to the drugstore and buy some sickness pills. It’s enough that you have to stay in the same spot for lots of hours, being sick too shouldn’t be part of your traveling plans.