My Secret to a Restful Overnight Flight: Inflight Ginger Tea

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Here's a scene from my kitchen this morning: early morning sunlight and a chopping board with ginger and lemons. Why? I am about to board a flight to Paris! (Lucky me, I know...) But what does fresh ginger tea have to do with a flight to France? 

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My mug of ginger tea, sealed up and ready to go. 
I use this mug, which is completely leakproof when sealed. 

When I travel overseas, on those long overnight flights, I find that the most important thing of all is to sleep. Getting even four hours of sleep on that flight is the difference, for me, between being ready to hit the ground running or feeling woozy and jet-lagged for days. I only slept an hour on my flight to London last month, and I was barely functional the first few days in town. 

I have lots of little tricks for going to sleep on a flight. I change into comfy clothes, and wash my face and brush my teeth. I never drink alcohol inflight, and I avoid caffeine for most of the day. But one of the best ways to relax — not to mention fend off airborne germs — is to bring my secret weapon: a mug of fresh ginger tea. 

No, you can't take tea through security, but you can fill a travel mug with fresh ginger slices, lemon wedges, and a fat glop of honey. Then, on the plane, you ask a nice attendant to fill the mug with hot water and let it steep until spicy and strong.

I find that sipping this inflight tea is better than all the free drinks and bad airplane food in the world, and it helps me relax enough to doze off. It's also good for stuffy noses and dry throats, and extremely healing for upset digestions. It's a little mug of magic. Jet lag be gone! 

That's the airplane best travel trick I know — do you do anything similar? 

(Images: Faith Durand)

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