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may 14 2010

Virgin Atlantic fights jet lag...and you win!

(Courtesy Mental Workout)

We've all been there. Your plane has touched down, and you're ready for your whirlwind international adventure. The Eiffel Tower beckons. The Great Pyramids await. The Coliseum is calling your name. And all you want to do is curl up in a ball and tuck yourself in for a long nap.

Jet lag is no joke. That terrible combination of fatigue, insomnia, and irritability can derail any vacation right from the start.

Well, starting this week, there's an app for that. Virgin Atlantic has teamed up with Dr. Chris Idzikowski, director of the Edinburgh Sleep Centre, to release the Jet Lag Fighter ($1.99), an app that promises to get you and your sleep schedule back on track after a grueling long haul.

The concept is simple. Punch in basic info, like flight details, age, sex, and usual sleep patterns. The app then generates a specialized game plan to keep your eyes open without that tenth cup of espresso. Your personalized regiment will tell you precisely when to sleep, when to exercise, and when to seek or avoid light. A nifty graph even illustrates how long it will take to overcome those jet lag blues—with and without the program.

Compatible with iPhones and iPads, sold in the iTunes App Store.

Now we turn to you: got any great jet lag fighting tips that keep you active and ready to go?

[Fun Fact for Travel Geeks: Dr. Idzikowski worked on a jet-lag project for Virgin Atlantic's rival, British Airways, three years ago.]

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Note:This story was accurate when it was published. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.

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