Have you ever hopped on a flight from New York to London only to find that you arrive tired and groggy? That’s jet lag, and it affects most travelers who cross multiple time zones. But how do pilots and flight crews get over jet lag and is there a trick to feeling better? 

Earlier this year, we looked at what causes jet lag and how long it lasts. As the final post in this series, here’s what you need to know about how to get over jet lag so you can get back to feeling like yourself as quickly as possible.

6 tips on how to get rid of jet lag fast

1. Adjust your sleep schedule.

If you’re planning on chartering a private jet and crossing multiple time zones, start gradually adjusting your sleep cycle. For travelers heading west, start staying up later and sleeping in. And, if you’re flying east, try going to bed and waking up earlier. Even slight adjustments can help you get over jet lag quickly. 

2. Drink plenty of water.

Stay hydrated before, during and after your flight by drinking lots of water. According to the CDC, staying hydrated can help you adjust to your new time zone and avoid the symptoms of jet lag.

3. Spend time outdoors.

Your circadian rhythm is tied to the rising and setting of the sun. When you arrive at your destination, spending time outdoors with plenty of natural light can help reset your internal clock. Try to get outside early in the morning when you arrive to kickstart this process.

4. Avoid alcohol and drink coffee strategically.

Both alcohol and caffeine can disrupt your sleep. When you arrive at your destination, skip the alcohol in favor of something non-alcoholic and only drink coffee in the morning to help you stay alert throughout the day. 

5. Have a quick nap.

Sometimes, you need that extra sleep to get through the day when you arrive at your destination. If you can’t make it to bedtime, a short nap of no more than 30 minutes can help you feel refreshed. However, it’s best to avoid napping if you can.

6. Take melatonin.

Small doses of melatonin, often considered the sleep hormone, may help with jet lag according to the Natural Center for Complimentary and Integrative Health. However, you should consult your healthcare provider before taking any supplements.

Frequently Asked Jet Lag Questions

How do pilots deal with jet lag?

Pilots and flight crews are just as susceptible to jet lag as the rest of us. When traveling long distances and crossing multiple time zones, most pilots and crew members use these same tricks: only drinking coffee in the morning, avoiding alcohol, staying hydrated, getting outdoors and gradually adjusting their sleep schedules when possible.

Is jet lag mental or physical?

Jet lag causes both physical and mental symptoms. When your body’s circadian rhythm is disrupted, you might feel fatigued and experience headaches and digestive issues as well as irritability, mood swings and difficulty concentrating.

Stay comfortable in the sky and arrive rested when you charter a private jet. Our private flight advisors and trip support team are here to help you make the most of your flight. Contact us today at (888) 593-9066 to learn more.