Spending an extended period of time on a plane, in cramped seats and surrounded by other people, has the potential to be very uncomfortable indeed.

From overpriced and not very filling food to the sniffs, snores and screaming babies, long-haul flights are very rarely considered comfortable.

The good news is that they can be as comfortable as you like, and with the right preparation, your long-haul flight could be an absolute breeze.

If you have a long-haul flight coming up or you’re on the way to the airport, here are the best ways to ensure that your flight is the most comfortable it can possibly be.

Plan your seating 

If it’s possible on your flight, take the time to consider where you’d like to sit.

With designated seating, most airlines give you the opportunity to choose where on the plane you want your seat to be.

This is a critical choice to make, and there have even been a number of scientific studies regarding just where on the plane is the ideal sweet spot.

If you can’t get the best seat on the plane (6A apparently), then consider your needs and make the right choice.

If you need extra legroom, then always make sure that you get an aisle seat or one next to the emergency exit, and if the sound of crying babies is enough to make your skin crawl, then avoid the front of the plane.

The better your seat, the more likely that you’ll have a more comfortable journey.

Be ready for delays 

One of the most frustrating things in the world is the flight delay.

There’s simply nothing that can be done about them, and they can very easily ruin a vacation or make you late for a business meeting.

As frustrating as they are, the trick is to be ready for them.

Make sure that you have food and drink options close to hand, and always check to see if you’re entitled to flight delay compensation. FairPlane UK provides a stress-free claim service.

It might not make up for lost time, but compensation could end up meaning that you have some extra local currency in your pocket when you finally arrive at your destination.

Get some sleep

The absolute best way to have the most comfortable journey is to simply sleep through it.

If you have the opportunity to book an evening flight rather than a morning one, then treat the journey as a chance to get some rest.

Make sure that you have a blanket in your hand luggage and consider the possibility of bringing along a travel pillow in case your airline doesn’t provide them.

Remember to pack some toiletries, so that your pre-sleep routine is as close to your home routine as possible, and get yourself as comfortable as possible so that you can dream your way to your destination.

Remember to drink

Avoid the alcohol and make sure that for the duration of your flight you’re as hydrated as possible.

It’s easy to forget, but airplane cabins are notoriously dry environments, so you’re going to need to replenish your water intake regularly.

Avoid drinking too much tea or coffee, and stick to water.

Although most airports have tight restrictions on bringing liquids onto planes, you can always bring an empty bottle that the cabin crew can refill for you.

Remember too to pack some moisturizer in your hand luggage, and your skin will be much less likely to crack and dry out, no matter how long your flight is.

Flying is always a cause of stress.

Taking the time to prepare for your journey will make it much easier to ensure that you have a long-haul flight that is actually comfortable, rather than the waking nightmare that it can all too often become.