Tips for Avoiding Jet Lag


As many seasoned travelers know, the inability to recover from jet lag can derail an entire business trip or vacation. The typical symptoms are not pleasant to deal with, particularly when you’re away from home. These symptoms may include fatigue, headaches, cold-like symptoms and irritability. 

Even with careful planning, travelers should expect a day of recovery for jet lag for every hour time difference you experience. While it might be tough to completely alleviate the symptoms of jet lag, there are certain measures you can take to lessen its impact on your trip.

Prepare Yourself

Before leaving on your trip, be sure your body is ready for the rigors of long-distance travel. This means eating right, exercising and getting rest. Some travelers even like to exercise before leaving for the airport to tire their bodies out and improve their ability to fall asleep in the air. Also, try to walk rather than take escalators or moving walkways in order to help further fatigue your body.

Sleeping Habits

Plan your sleeping habits a few days in advance as well. Travelers flying east “lose” time and typically experience the most problems after landing. Travelers heading west, “gain” time and have an easier time adjusting to time differences than eastward travelers. To combat jet lag, try to stay up a little later or sleep a little earlier at night to adjust to the time change depending on your route.


Avoid Alcohol

Many experts warn not to drink alcohol prior to flying. This isn’t the most fun option, but in the long term, your body will have an easier time adjusting. The sleep you get on the flight will not be as sound and the dehydration caused by alcohol can be tough to recover from. A hangover in addition to jet lag will not help you to be at your best once you reach your destination.

During the Flight

Once in flight, drink as much water as possible to stay hydrated. Stretch during long flights to keep blood flowing and to prevent clotting. Experts also recommend a couple of supplements that may help fliers sleep better and adjust to the time change. Melatonin, if taken at the correct dosage, can help regulate sleep cycles. There is also a product called “No-Jet-Lag” that claims to alleviate all jet lag symptoms.

Watch Your Diet

While the official “jet lag diet” has been proven ineffective, watching your diet prior to travel is still beneficial. Nutritionists recommend eating food high in fiber that can be easily digested. This will ease the dietary transition once you get to your destination and help limit the stomach issues many people experience after particularly long flights. If you need to sleep during your flight, eat foods high in carbohydrates prior to takeoff as they will help you feel more relaxed.


Jet lag may never be completely eliminated, but by using these tips, you can get your trip off to a great start and be at your best for meetings or relaxing by the pool.

In case of a travel emergency during your next trip, make sure to download the Global Travel Plus Mobile App. With just a tap of a button, you can be connected to our 24/7 Operations Team. The app also includes many features that may be helpful during your travels such as Pre-Trip Information, U.S. Pharmacy Locator, and Global Embassy Locator.
Posted: 2/28/2020 9:00:00 AM