Noise-cancelling headphones have become a must-have item for world travellers. All it takes is for you to try them once, and you will never go on another long trip, ever, without them in your carry-on.
When you are on a plane flying, there is a constant hum of the engines that is louder than most of us realize. Your brain adjusts to it, but you really start to notice it while trying to listen to media because you have to turn the volume up pretty loud to overcome that loud hum. And even then, it can still be too loud. That’s where noise cancelling headphones come in. The most popular brand is made by Bose (the Bose QuietComfort Series), which are the ones that I use.
The first time I tried them out, I was on a long flight, and the person next to me let me try hers on. The experience was almost magical. You put the headphones on and they feel like regular headphones, but then you turn them on and immediately everything goes quiet! The hum of the plane just disappears! Turn them back off, and the hum comes right back. The effect really is mind-blowing!
What is also interesting is that you can still carry on a conversation with the person next to you, normally, because their voice comes through the headphones, but the plane hum stays out. Listen to music with the headphones on and you can keep the volume at a normal level, and still hear all the notes. Watch a movie and you can hear every word being said without having to blow your eardrums out with the volume. But the one use that I find the best, is to simply have them on when I go to sleep. Because the headphones cancel out the plane hum, I find that I have a much deeper sleep and I wake up feeling refreshed. As a result, It actually helps me overcome jet lag.
So, before you head off on your next long trip, be sure to pick up a pair of noise-cancelling headphones. If not only for the noise but to get a better sleep and arrive refreshed at your destination.