How long is too long for a long haul flight?

Travel Forums General Talk How long is too long for a long haul flight?

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11. Posted by AndyF (Moderator 1720 posts) 1w Star this if you like it!

Quoting JimboWilso

a friend and I are doing LONDON HEATHROW to SINGAPORE which, as you probably know, is 13+ hours. But we are going 'business class' should this make a difference?

With business class you have a chance to lie down so you have a much greater chance of getting some sleep, but even so it's an individual thing whether this is enough of a decent environment for you to get a decent rest. When the crew darken the cabin, the best bet is to follow a sleep routine by putting on the eye-mark and earplugs, covering yourself with the blanket even if you're not particularly cold, and trying to settle down to sleep.

Even if you get some rest on the flight, plan on taking it easy during the first few days in Singapore as jetlag may hit you regardless of whether you suffer fatigue from the flight. You're crossing a lot of timezones so you'll be out of kilter, and it takes typically a day per timezone to adapt.

12. Posted by greatgrandmaR (Travel Guru 1204 posts) 1w Star this if you like it!

I think the amount of time per time zone depends a bit on the individual. I have not found that it took me that long to adjust. And it also depends a bit on whether you are going east or west and whether the flight is at night. When I fly from the east coast of the US overnight to Europe (5 to 7 time zones), I am usually able to get onto the new time zone within a couple of days - at least enough for sightseeing. Going the other way during the day, it takes less time.

Going to Australia from Miami which is about 14 time zones it did take me a bit longer to adjust. For a couple of days I was waking up in the middle of the Australian night. But I expected that.

13. Posted by Andrew Mack (Travel Guru 1032 posts) 1w Star this if you like it!

Quoting JimboWilso

[quote=Andrew Mack]LHR to Singapore which, as you probably know, is 13+ hours. But we are going 'business class' should this make a difference?

As others have said, yes it should make it more bearable but be careful with alcohol (which dehydrates you and usually reduces quality of sleep) on the flight and do try to get some sleep. But it's still a long time to be seated in one place in a controlled environment.
Also try to make the first day after landing a quiet day, so you can acclimatise to the heat and judge how badly you're jet-lagged.
That doesn't mean don't do anything, but don't rush and allow time to just sit and grab a drink etc.
You may be lucky and get a full nights sleep on the plane (a little more likely in business class but still overall unlikely) and may acclimatise/time-adjust immediately, but you probably won't.

[ Edit: Edited on 09-Sep-2019, 14:10 GMT by Andrew Mack ]

14. Posted by Teoni (Travel Guru 764 posts) 1w Star this if you like it!

Quoting JimboWilso

Quoting Andrew Mack

I've done London (LHR) - Singapore/KL/BKK on various occasions and that's the maximum I'd do in one go as I generally don't get more than 2 or 3 hours sleep (sometimes less) on a plane.
If I was going further then I'd definately want a 24 hour+ stop-over somewhere interesting.

Hi Andrew, a friend and I are doing LONDON HEATHROW to SINGAPORE which, as you probably know, is 13+ hours. But we are going 'business class' should this make a difference?

I once did business class from Abu Dhabi to Sydney and being able to lie down and sleep really did make the jet lag better once we arrived. I still got jet lag but it was less severe. I think if they ever do 18+ hour flights it would be really difficult in economy.

15. Posted by greatgrandmaR (Travel Guru 1204 posts) 1w Star this if you like it!

A small person has more options for sleeping positions in economy. At least when I traveled with my grandchildren at about age 12-13 they usually could sleep in the economy seat better than I could. They were thinner than I was - some of them were shorter, but some were as tall as I was, and they were more flexible.

16. Posted by Cottonwood (Budding Member 95 posts) 5d Star this if you like it!

IF I could afford it, I would do it in first class. I lucked out on one of my trips to New Zealand on United back in the early 1990's.......only 90 people on a 747-200. Had the whole row of seats to myself. I actually slept.

17. Posted by Andrew Mack (Travel Guru 1032 posts) 5d Star this if you like it!

Quoting Cottonwood

Had the whole row of seats to myself.

I had that in 2010 on a new A380 airbus to KL.... or was it Singapore...
It would have been excellent if there hadn't been a baby screaming for pretty much the whole flight...

18. Posted by Teoni (Travel Guru 764 posts) 3d Star this if you like it!

Quoting Cottonwood

Had the whole row of seats to myself. I actually slept.

I've managed to luck out twice. Once was Singapore - Sydney, the row in front was empty so I moved in, the plane was so empty the staff didn't seem to care. The second time didn't even have to move on the plane Doha - Prague.

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