I Took the 17 Hour Qantas Flight From Dallas, Texas to Melbourne, Australia. Would I Take It Again?

Qantas one of the longest flights from Dallas to Melbourne

When I started traveling years ago, I always looked for the shortest flights between two places. Sometimes these aren’t always the cheapest options, but the convenience of getting to your destination sooner made it worthwhile. Later, I opted for more affordable so that I could get more flights to more destinations. Some of the benefits of this mean shorter hops � especially when you’re coming from somewhere as remote as Australia. Recently, however, I found the need to travel back to Melbourne quickly and was able to use points for a flight from Dallas, TX, to my home city in Australia. It was the longest flight I’d ever taken, and I felt apprehensive about getting on it � mainly due to my ADHD.�

If we’re talking distance, the longest flight in the world, according to�Upgraded Points, is from Singapore to New York and takes nearly 19 hours. It’s over 15,000 kilometers. This is a feat in itself, as it’s only been in recent years that the ability to travel further without stopping to refuel has been a thing. Qantas runs flight QF22 from Dallas to Melbourne 3 times a week on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. This is the 4th longest flight in the world at close to 14,500 kilometers and 17.5 hours. Until this point, my 14.5 hours had been my limit on a non-stop flight. While you may think, “That’s only a three-hour difference!” the truth is that the anxiety induced between hearing 17.5 hours and 14.5 hours is a harsh reality for someone with ADHD.

qantas onboard flight entertainment

Not much can be done to quell the anxiety that comes with the thought of spending almost an entire day with nothing to do � especially when you’re naturally a poor sleeper. So in your mind, you might think it will be hours of looking at your watch, wondering when you will land. Luckily, I slept a few hours here and there, which passed some of the time. I wanted to be able to get up and walk about. Still, the man who decided to recline his chair made it difficult to get in and out of my seat, so I resolved to watch as many movies and tv-shows as possible.

Some of the Challenges of Flying with ADHD

Sitting Still: One of the most challenging aspects of traveling with ADHD is sitting still for an extended period. The long flight from Dallas to Melbourne can exacerbate this issue. Strategies like taking frequent walks around the cabin or engaging in seated exercises can help reduce restlessness.

Sensory Overload:�The airport’s hustle and bustle, airplane noise, and the sensory stimuli of the in-flight entertainment system can be overwhelming for individuals with ADHD. Bringing noise-canceling headphones or a fidget toy can help reduce sensory overload.

Time Management: ADHD can make it challenging to manage time, which can cause difficulties when navigating a long-haul flight. Setting alarms or reminders on a phone or watch can help individuals with ADHD stay on track with meal times, medication schedules, and other essential tasks.

Tips for Managing ADHD Symptoms During the Flight

Plan Ahead:�Planning and preparing for the flight can reduce stress and anxiety. This includes packing essential items such as medication, snacks, and entertainment.

Medication:�If medication is part of an individual’s ADHD treatment plan, it’s crucial to ensure that it is taken according to the schedule prescribed by a doctor.

Entertainment:�Keeping the mind occupied during a long flight can be challenging. Bringing a book, puzzle, or game can alleviate boredom and restlessness.

Sleep:�Getting adequate sleep is crucial for managing ADHD symptoms. Bringing a neck pillow, eye mask, and earplugs can help create a conducive sleep environment.

And, yes, I get it. We neuro-divergent people aren’t great at planning ahead or sleeping, but if you can do it, it will definitely help! Would I take this flight again? I like shorter hops, but if I had to retake this flight, I would keep these tips in mind!

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