Image: Cashmere socks
Courtesy of British Apparel Collection
Cashmere socks easily stow away and keep your feet toasty warm.
updated 11/7/2011 8:51:20 AM ET 2011-11-07T13:51:20

No matter your destination, these onboard luxuries will allow you to fly in pure comfort.

Let’s face it: With shrinking seats and growing onboard food prices, it’s getting harder and harder to fly comfortably, no matter how long the trip. Outside of flying first class, what do you do?

Slideshow: Best airplane carry-on items

Fortunately, plenty of products come ready-made for just this purpose. So we went out and found the best TSA-approved carry-on items to make your journey in the recirculated air just a bit more bearable.

One way to boost your comfort level while flying? Give your feet the royal treatment. Long-haul flights can be chilly even in the warmest weather, so a plush pair of socks can help avoid cold feet. Sure, you could stuff a pair of slippers in your carry-on, but cashmere socks are more comfortable and take up less space.

Nothing speeds up a long flight like your favorite entertainment, and whether your tastes lean toward The Rolling Stones on MP3s or James Bond movies on your tablet, good-quality headphones are a necessity. A noise-reduction feature is a worth-it plus for frequent travelers.

Even just bringing essential toiletries—hand creams, moisturizers, sanitizers, toothpaste—onboard can make your flight more bearable. Just be sure they’re in TSA-approved sizes (3.4 oz or 100 ml or less, packaged in a clear, one-quart bag).

And of course, drinking lots of water will benefit you both onboard and once you reach your destination. Take your own water bottle and keep it filled throughout your flight. It may be tempting to take advantage of plentiful alcoholic refreshments in flight, but it’s actually better not to over-imbibe. The effects of alcohol are amplified in flight because of the change in air pressure.

You can also take an active role in finding the most comfortable seat by considering your activities during the flight. For instance, if you’re planning on sleeping, pick a seat by the window so you won’t be bothered by restless neighbors. To help select the best seats, go to There, you can enter your flight number and see which seats give you the best features, such as reclining functions, additional legroom, power ports and Wi-Fi access.

But whatever else you do before your next flight, check out our list of the best airplane carry-on items—they’ll definitely make for a more pleasant journey.

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Copyright © 2012 American Express Publishing Corporation


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