How To Not Get Sick On A Plane

Airplanes can be a hotspot for germs, leaving many travelers worried about getting sick. Did you know that sitting in an aisle seat could increase your chances of catching something? Luckily, our guide is packed with practical strategies to keep those nasty bugs at bay while you’re up in the air.

Discover simple steps—from selecting your seat to essential hand hygiene—that will shield you from colds and flu. Stay healthy and enjoy the flight!

Key Takeaways

  • Sit in a window seat to avoid germs from people walking by.
  • Use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol and wipe down your tray table, armrests, and other surfaces.
  • Bring your own pillow and blanket for cleanliness and comfort.
  • Stay hydrated on the plane with water you bring or fill up after security checks.
  • Wash your hands often or use hand sanitizer when you can’t wash them.

Tips to Avoid Getting Sick on a Plane

A Disinfectant Wipe Is Placed On An Airplane Tray Table With A Clean And Well-Organized Seat Area.

Steering clear of those pesky germs at 30,000 feet might seem daunting, but fear not—there are savvy strategies you can employ to stay as healthy as a horse. From your seat selection to the sneaky spots you’ll want to swipe with sanitizer, I’ve got the insider scoop on how to fend off bugs and keep your immune system in tip-top shape.

Choose a strategic seat

A Passenger Looking Out The Window On A Commercial Flight, Surrounded By Bustling Activity.

Pick a window seat for your next flight. It’s not just about the view! Window seats can help you avoid germs from people passing by in the aisle. You’ll stay put more often, and that means less contact with others.

Fewer folks brushing by your seat equals fewer chances to catch something.

Keep your space when sitting near other passengers. If you’re right by the aisle, you have to deal with everyone who walks past—potentially sneezing, coughing, or touching surfaces around you.

Grabbing that window spot cuts down on those encounters big time. Plus, if someone nearby forgets their manners and doesn’t cover a cough or sneeze? Being away from the action helps protect you from those pesky respiratory droplets.

Use motion sickness medication

An Overhead View Of A Bottle Of Motion Sickness Medication With An Airplane Window In The Background.

Flying can be rough if you’re prone to motion sickness. Taking the right medication can keep nausea at bay and make your trip more comfortable.

  • Pack Dramamine®’s non – drowsy Naturals with ginger before you fly. It’s made to prevent and treat motion sickness without making you sleepy.
  • Read the instructions on your motion sickness medication carefully. Know when and how much to take before your flight takes off.
  • Keep the medication close, like in your carry – on bag. You’ll want it handy in case you start feeling sick during your trip.
  • Eat a small meal before taking the medicine if it suggests doing so. A little food in your stomach can help the medicine work better.
  • Avoid alcohol while taking motion sickness meds. Booze can mess with how well the medicine works and might make you feel worse.
  • Let the flight attendants know you’ve taken something for motion sickness. They can help by offering extra sick bags or checking on you during the flight.

Relax and avoid greasy/spicy foods

A Picnic Basket Filled With Fresh Fruits And Vegetables In A Serene Park Setting.

Eating the right food before and during your flight helps keep you comfortable. Greasy, spicy, or salty snacks can upset your stomach up in the air.

  • Eat light before you travel. Choose fruits, veggies, or a small sandwich to keep your stomach calm.
  • Pack your own snacks. Bland foods like crackers or dry cereal are great for flying.
  • Skip airport fast food. It may look tempting, but it could make you feel sick later.
  • Try ginger. Some people find that ginger candies or tea can soothe the stomach.
  • Drink lots of water. Staying hydrated helps prevent discomfort from indigestion.
  • Avoid alcohol and caffeine on the plane. Both can dehydrate you and mess with your digestion.
  • Give yourself time to digest. Don’t eat a big meal right before boarding; let your last meal settle first.

Additional Tips and Resources

A Traveler Cleaning Airplane Seat And A Diverse Group Of People In A Bustling Atmosphere.

But wait, there’s more—think of this as your travel health toolkit, packed with extra tactics to keep those pesky germs at bay. Dive into these additional resources where we’ll provide the know-how on turning your seat area into a fortress against sickness and mastering the art of germ-free jet setting.

Stay hydrated and bring your own water bottle

A Vibrant Reusable Water Bottle With Tropical Foliage In The Background.

Drinking water is key on flights! The air up there is very dry, and your body can get dehydrated. Carry a refillable water bottle with you. Fill it up after going through security to steer clear of airplane water, which might not be the cleanest.

Keeping hydrated helps your nose do its job in trapping germs. You’ll feel better and protect yourself from getting sick by sipping lots of water, especially if you’re flying for a long time.

Make sure to take drinks regularly and keep that bottle handy!

Use hand sanitizer and sanitize your area

A Person Using Hand Sanitizer On An Airplane Seat With A Bustling Atmosphere.

Flying can expose you to germs. Keep your space clean to stay healthy.

  • Grab hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol content before you board. Use it after touching anything in the cabin.
  • Bring sanitizing wipes in your carry-on. Give your seat area a good wipe down as soon as you sit down.
  • Focus on high – touch areas like the tray table, armrests, and seatbelt buckle. These spots are germ hotspots.
  • If you use the overhead bin or bathroom, clean your hands right after with hand sanitizer.
  • Scrub your hands with soap for at least 20 seconds in the lavatory. Do this frequently throughout the flight.
  • Keep your personal items like phones and books free from germs. Wipe them down too.
  • Make a habit of not touching your face unless you’ve just sanitized your hands. This reduces the risk of transferring germs.
  • If someone nearby sneezes or coughs, discreetly sanitize again. Airborne pathogens spread this way.
  • Consider using a face mask, especially during flu season or if there’s an outbreak like coronavirus.
  • Reapply sanitizer after eating or drinking since you’ll likely touch your mouth area.

Consider bringing your own pillow/blanket

A Comfortable Airplane Seat With Plush Pillows And Blankets, Featuring Diverse Passengers And Well-Lit Interior.

Bringing your own pillow and blanket on a flight is a smart move. Airplane blankets and pillows may not be fresh from the laundry for each new passenger. By using your own, you avoid contact with these items that could carry germs.

It’s like creating a personal clean zone in your seat.

Your pillow and blanket serve as barriers against bacteria lurking around the cabin, including on seats and overhead bins. Having them also means you can snuggle into something familiar and comfy—not only reducing exposure to germs but promoting better sleep during your journey.

Stay cozy, stay healthy!

Use disinfecting wipes

Disinfecting Wipes On An Airplane Tray Table With A Seatbelt And Diverse Passengers.

Grab disinfecting wipes before you fly. Wipe down your tray table, armrests, and seat belt – these spots are full of germs. Don’t forget the headrest and seatback pocket! It’s a simple way to fight off sickness from other passengers.

Keep those wet wipes handy! Use them on your hands and face during the flight for extra germ protection. You’ll step off the plane feeling cleaner and more secure against airborne germs.

Stay vigilant with these easy steps to keep the flu and other diseases at bay while flying.

Wash your hands frequently

A Clean, Modern Bathroom Sink With Soap And Running Water, Featuring A Variety Of Different People And Styles.

Keep germs away by washing your hands a lot. It’s super important, especially on planes where you’re close to others and their germs. Press the soap into your palms and scrub for at least 20 seconds – hum the “Happy Birthday” song twice to keep track! Make sure to get under your nails and between fingers.

If there’s no sink nearby, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.

Before eating or touching your face, cleaning up is a must. Handwashing helps protect you from nasty stuff like SARS, tuberculosis, flus, and even the coronavirus outbreak. Being cooped up in a plane means diseases can pass around easily; clean hands are one of the best shields against getting infected.

Protect yourself from airborne germs with masks and electrolytes

A Person Wearing A Mask Drinks Electrolyte-Infused Water In A Bustling Airport Setting.

Wearing a mask can be your shield on the plane. It helps block germs from sneezes and coughs coming your way. Pick one that fits well and feels comfortable for hours. If you can, find masks with built-in air filters.

These can clean the air you breathe even more.

Don’t forget to pack some electrolytes too. They’re not just for athletes! Electrolytes keep your immune system strong in dry, dehydrating cabin air. Drink them mixed in water throughout the flight and they’ll help fight off any bugs trying to get you down.


A Clean Airplane Seat With Personal Water Bottle And Mask In A Bustling Atmosphere.

Flying doesn’t have to mean feeling sick. Remember, picking the right seat can make a huge difference—aim for stability near the wings. Keep those hands clean and don’t forget to stay hydrated with your personal water bottle! Bring along some Dramamine® if motion troubles you, and relax with deep breaths or meditation.

Finally, dodge those germs; a mask might just be your best friend up in the sky!

If you’re curious about how airlines accommodate passengers’ furry friends, learn more about where animals are placed on planes.


1. What steps can I take to avoid getting sick on a plane?

To stay healthy in the air, it’s important to keep your hands clean — wash them often with soap and water. Wear a cloth mask, especially during health crises like the coronavirus outbreak, and drink plenty of water to ward off symptoms of dehydration.

2. How can I protect myself from disease transmission while flying?

Make sure you use hand sanitizer after touching surfaces and before eating or touching your face. Choose seats near an air cleaner if you can, as they help filter out germs. And remember: don’t be shy about asking someone who is visibly sick to cover their mouth when coughing or sneezing.

3. Is it necessary to wear sneakers on a plane for health reasons?

While sneakers themselves aren’t required for health reasons, they are part of being prepared — comfortable footwear helps you move easily through the airport and keeps your feet protected from germs on the floor during your flight.

4. Will wearing masks on planes still matter post-coronavirus crisis?

Yes — masks remain useful in preventing illness because they limit exposure to airborne particles that cause infectious diseases; keeping one handy is always smart thinking… all things considered!