Five Items That Can Upgrade Your Air Travel

A touch of first class

With planes continuing to be packed and the vast majority of us unable to pay extra to sit in business and first class, it isn't exactly fun to travel these days. A friend was lamenting having to take an 18-hour flight across the pond -- in coach -- and asked me what could be done to make her journey more bearable. So below are five things that won't make up for sitting in first class, but can bring a touch of it to coach. 

  • 01 of 05

    Noise canceling headphones/earbuds

    One of the more stressful things on long and short flights is the constant noise made by the aircraft engines. And screaming babies and children are no picnic either. So a pair of quality headphones are a must to bring calm and peace aboard your flight. I have a nice pair of Sharper Image headphones and Klipsch earbuds. 


  • 02 of 05



    Whether I'm flying domestic or international, I always bring non-perishable snacks like fancy nuts, protein bars or granola, because you never know what items may be available or if there may be delays in the air or on the ground. On long domestic flights, I usually bring my own luxury meal, usually smoked salmon, cheese, crackers and fresh fruit. I also bring my own empty Camelbak water bottle for post-security and inflight refills to stay hydrated. 

  • 03 of 05

    Large light wool scarf/pashima


    A large light wool scarf or pashima is a great all-purpose item to have, because it can be used for different purposes. I use it as a wrap, a pillow, a skirt cover and an accessory to dress up travel outfits. Buy my favorite for $10 at the Bijoux Terner website.

  • 04 of 05

    Phone/Tablet charger


    On a recent flight to Paris, my airplane had a handy USB port that allowed me to charge my iPhone and iPad. But on the flight home, that outlet wasn't available. Which is why I always travel with my Mophie Juice Pack Powerstation Duo, which allows me to charge both quickly. 

    Continue to 5 of 5 below.
  • 05 of 05

    Eye Mask and Neck Pillow

    ••• Image courtesy of Lewis 'N Clark

     On longer flights, you may want to take a nap. Pair your noise canceling headphones with a comfy sleep mask and a supportive neck pillow -- like this one from Lewis 'N Clark -- to help you sleep like a baby 35,000 feet in the air. And use that pashima as a blanket to complete your perfect rest.