Jet lag tips

Jet Lag tips

The majority of our Italy travel planning clients are based in North America, which is a 6 – 9 hour time difference from Italy, depending on where you travel from. So it makes sense that they request jet lag tips in addition to Italy travel tips.  If you’re not sure what jet lag is or why you’d need jet lag tips, picture this: you land in Italy at 8 AM local time. But you’ve flown in from New York, which is six hours behind. Your body thinks it’s 2 AM and that you should be be fast asleep. Instead, you get off the plane, into blinding sunshine. You’re feeling groggy and rumpled. You need to find baggage claim, get through customs and immigration lines, and locate the driver holding the sign with your name on it. (Or, find the airport train.)

Your body will take some time to adjust to the six hour time difference. Your sleep patterns, digestion and hunger rhythms will be off for a few days. Follow our jet lag tips below for a smoother transition.

Jet Lag tips: before and during travel

You can make the adjustment much smoother by following a few jet lag tips on the airplane.

Jet Lag tips: arrival day

Jet Lag tips: the first full day of your trip

Jet Lag tips: traveling with babies or small children

Sorry parents, the advice above doesn’t work as well with small children. I speak from experience! Here’s my best advice:

Jet Lag FAQ: How long will it take me to adjust?

It allegedly takes one day per hour of time difference for the body to get fully adjusted. So for a 6 hour time difference, it would take 6 days for the body to completely adjust. That might be based on science, but in my experience, it takes about half of that, and less if the guidelines above are followed.

Also, the excitement of a long-anticipated dream vacation produces a lot of adrenaline that goes a long way. Many of our travelers tell us that they do follow the tips above, but then due to the excitement about their trip, they hardly notice jet lag at all. Personally I find day 2 the toughest. On my arrival day, I run on adrenaline. On day 1 I follow my own advice above. But by day 2 I want to be adjusted already. I have plans!

Jet Lag related FAQ: Can’t I get early check-in at my hotel?

Okay this isn’t specifically about jet lag, but this question comes up with almost every client. Hotels in cities with international airports (Rome, Venice, Milan) rarely allow early check-in. This is because the majority of international flights arrive in the early morning so everyone wants early check-in. Thousands of people land in Rome at 7 AM every single day, and they would all love access to their hotel room at 9 AM. Unless you have ultra-VIP status, the hotel will tell you that the way to get access to your room before the official check-in time is to book the room for the previous night.

Did I miss any jet lag tips? Please share in the comments!

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