It can be darn hard to survive early morning flights, but although they are a pain in the ass, they are usually necessary due to either your destination or your nearest airport’s timetables. No one willingly books a supremely early flight for the hell of it.
Getting up at 2am or 3am to catch that flight can be absolutely heinous and soul destroying, but it’s worth it once you’re safely in your plane seat and you’re relaxing with your noise canceling headphones on. There are a few steps that can help this traumatic experience a touch easier, so check out these tips which will help you survive early morning flights!
How To Survive Early Morning Flights
1. Pack two days before
We all can be lazy, and leaving packing for a trip until the last minute is understandable. You may not feel inspired by outfits, you may not have time or you may not be able to peel yourself off Netflix, but trust me. It will save a load of time.
Make sure you force yourself to get your shit together at least two days before. Find the right luggage for the trip, roll up those garments, stuff it all inside and leave the necessities at the top of your pack so you can still use your toothbrush before you fly. Everything’s ready so all you have to do is roll out of bed, shuffle the extra bits together and get going. Do NOT try and pack the night before as you need as much rest as possible. You don’t need the packing stress.
2. Lists, lists & more lists
Write a list of the top things you need to take with you, especially the important things that could severely impact your trip i.e. passport, tickets, phone charger, make-up etc. This check list can be swiftly run through before you start out the door pre-dawn. You don’t want to run out the door to your taxi only to realize that you’ve left your foundation or contraceptive pills on your night stand. There’s no time to turn back!
3. Tire yourself out
If you have to get up while everyone’s still riding unicorns in their dreams, then you better make those sweet few hours count! I find the best way is to work up a sweat and get that blood pumping as the sleep you get after is incredibly deep and fulfilling.
On my recent early morning flight to Estonia, I made sure I went to my kickboxing class the evening before and pushed myself hard. I got home, ate dinner, took a hot shower and by 10pm I was sleepy as heck. I managed to fit in a solid five hours of riding my unicorn before my alarm dragged me up. To survive an early morning flight, five hours is a substantial amount and you’ll feel so much better than trying to pull an all nighter – don’t do that.
Any kind of exercise will work but just make sure you werk it.
4. Know slumber habits
Are you someone who sleeps real deep and hits snooze or accidentally turns off their alarm whilst half asleep? If so, you need to take precautions. Make sure your alarm is turned up to its maximum or is placed away from the bed. You’ll either be ripped from dream town quite horrifically or have to make the journey across your room to turn it off, and there’s no going back to sleep once you realize why you’ve set that alarm to ‘awake with terror’. alternatively, you could go into training and get your sleeping pattern right for this 3am wake-up call, but this is only for the truly
There’s no way you should hit snooze to get an ‘extra 10 minutes’ and risk being late for your flight. That’s just crazy talk!
5. Book a taxi and forget about breakfast
If you need to book a taxi to get to the airport or the closest public transport to the airport, then book one in advance. You don’t want to risk calling a taxi service at 4am needing a cab asap and finding either no one picks up or it will take 20 minutes to arrive. Time is paramount and you need to know that your chariot will be awaiting you as soon as you emerge from your home, bleary eyed.
If you know you can’t survive an early morning flight without brekkie, then take some snacks with you that will suffice as breakfast if you know that you’ll get hungry that early… or just grab something from the airport. You could risk aeroplane food, but don’t bother trying to get breakfast down your neck at home before you leave.
Hopefully these tips will help you get that flight and you won’t be found weeping at your closed gate, holiday canceled. If you just can’t face getting up that early and you have a long journey to your nearest airport, it might be worth to head that way the night before and stay at a crummy airport hotel. I wish we had done that before our traumatic Bristol to Stansted saga.
At a nearby airport hotel, you could get in an extra hour or two of sleep, and if it means that much to you then that’s probably a good option. If not, man up, be strategic and don’t waste any time – get going and may the odds forever be in your favour.