Tip on coping with jet lag flying to Europe

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As Daddy travels a lot to Europe and sometimes to US for business, our friends ask him if he has any tips on how to cope with jet lag and time zone changes.

Here we would like to share our tips on managing time zone differences if you travel to Europe.

When you travel to Europe, you gain around 7-8 hours when you arrive, and you lose the same hours when you fly back. Most people prefer to fly at night (to sleep on the plane) in order to save one day of hotel stay in Europe.

If you fly from here to Europe at night, assuming your flight departs around midnight, you will have around 12-14 hours on the plane and then when you arrive there, it will be around 6 in the morning. Thus, it will be a long day on your arrival day as you gain 7-8 hours there.

It is quite natural for most people to sleep when they board the plane at midnight, but then you will tend to wake up about 7 hours in the flight which is around 7am Singapore time but only midnight in Europe. Then you will have a very long day ahead. Daddy prefers to watch movies or do some reading on the plane first and then sleep 4 hours into the flight, which is 4am Singapore time or 9pm Europe time. If he manages to sleep for 7 hours, he will wake up around 11am Singapore time or 3am Europe time.

On the day of arrival, he will try to stay awake as late as possible although many people will be tempted to sleep early due to the long day. If possible, he will go for a walk or jog in the day and sleep at 10pm Europe time. If you sleep too early, you tend to wake up middle of the night in Europe.

On the return trip, if he travels at night, for example boarding the plane at 10pm Europe time which is 5am Singapore time, he will try to sleep immediately but not to sleep too much as it will be a shorter day on his return journey. He will limit myself to 4 hours of sleep, which means he will wake up around 9 am Singapore time and when he arrives in Singapore in the afternoon, he will be quite sleepy and able to sleep at 10pm at night in Singapore. If he sleeps more than 4 hours on the plane, he may not be able to sleep on the night when he arrives.

Remember also to drink lots of water and go out for a walk when you arrive. These will help to reduce your jet lag when you travel across different time zones.


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