Flying With A Cold

We’ve all been there – busy life sweeps you away, and just as you wind down into your holiday, the dreaded lurgy hits you like a train! If you’re lucky and catch it early enough, Vicks First Defence spray is a miracle worker and can usually sort you out in a day or so. If not – uh oh!

Now, the considerate thing to do would be cancel/postpone your trip and think about your fellow plane passengers who will be in a confined space with you for a few hours….

…..but let’s be honest, that’s the last thing you want to do!

So – if you’ve decided to battle through and get on the plane, here are some tips that will help ease your pain, make the journey a little more comfortable as well as be as respectful as you can to your fellow travellers.

1. Decongestant. This is absolute KEY to making your journey more comfortable. If you’ve ever experienced painful ‘popping’ ears on a plane before then buckle up, as you haven’t felt the half of it. When you’re riddled with cold, your head and ears get even more bunged up and it becomes a real challenge to release the pressure – even after you’ve landed you’ll likely have hearing problems for a couple of days. Taking decongestant on the day of your flight (with one dose being around 30-60 minutes from the descent), allows your bodily fluids to ‘flow’ easier and that horrible ear pain should ease up!

2. Tissues, tissues and more tissues (and some hand sanitiser). Personal hygiene is a must, and there’s nothing more irritating than sitting next to a snotty human with a drippy nose who’s clearly not giving a second thought to containing their bug. The old ‘catch it, kill it, bin it’ comes into play here, and if your fellow passengers can see you’re doing everything to stop the spread, I’m sure they’ll be understanding! Keep your hands clean with hand sanitiser as well to not only help the rest of the plane, but also to stop you picking up anything else nasty to further ruin your holiday!

3. Why not have a cheeky pint or two? Okay so this isn’t TECHNICALLY medicinal, but it might take the edge off for a little bit. (Don’t overdo it though, or you’ll prolong your illness by a couple of days.)

5. Hydrate. All joking aside, water is your friend here; water and orange juice. The air conditioning on the plane will dry your nose and throat out, making it hurt quite quickly. Staying hydrated is so important for a more relaxed journey… a pack of throat sweets wouldn’t go amiss either.

6. Paracetamol. Don’t be a hero, get some pain relievers in you. If you can, alternate between paracetamol and ibuprofen for maximum efficiency, to keep the aches and pains at bay.

7. Sleep. As with everything, sleep is the fixer. If you can nod off for a couple of hours, then do. Every bit of sleep helps to repair your body, so get your comfies on, lay back (once you’ve checked with the person behind you of course… don’t be one of those people who just flings your chair back into someone else’s space without checking 😑) and get a nap in!

8. Comfort food. Now isn’t the time for sticking to your diet and being miserable. Get your favourite snacks and treats ready and perk yourself up. You’re bound to feel pretty crappy so you might as well try and enjoy the little things?

So there you go. Both myself and Scott have been in this situation quite a few times in the past (most recently me on our trip to Estonia), so speaking from experience it’s not going to magically cure you, but it just makes it a LOT more manageable! Obviously, if it’s something like the flu or a serious epidemic such as Coronavirus, please postpone your flight!! In that situation it’s not fair on your fellow passengers to be trapped in a plane with you where you’ll be knowingly spreading your germs and ruining their holidays too.

*Scott told me I needed to write a disclaimer, reminding people to check doses and medications with a doctor if you’re unsure, and always read the instructions.

Leave a Reply