Ahead of you is a short or long flight. It doesn’t matter in the least, because all you dream about is catching at least a short nap above the clouds. After all, traveling is so tiring ;) What should you do to get a good night’s sleep on the plane and let others sleep? How to sleep? :)
We travel a lot, we fly a lot, such is the profession of a travel blogger ;-) Today we want to share with you our tips on what you can do to catch at least some sleep on the plane, making our trip much more comfortable. I don’t think anyone can deny that it’s good to take a nap even on a short European flight. Not to mention the more than 10-hour transcontinental flights.
Until a few years ago, we didn’t want to sleep on a plane. There is so much going on around, views outside the window, listening to the engines, a few books to read. Because how can you not use the on-board entertainment system when there are so many series and movies waiting? A waste of time to sleep! Fortunately, we passed quickly. Currently, we treat airplane flight only as a means of transportation from point A to point B. It matters less to us whether a real cinema feast or a feast for the palate awaits us on board (although this is also important ;) ).
What’s more, we treat the time on the plane as a time in which we can rest, gather strength and recuperate after an intense day on the road, or prepare for the first active day on the ground. The idea is not to sleep through the entire flight, but to simply relax, close your eyes for a while and control your yawning.
This by no means means means that we fall asleep as soon as the plane begins to pull away from the runway. We remember our flight to Japan, when, while still taxiing around the airport, a large number of Asians were sleeping with their heads hanging down. This level of mastery we have not yet reached ;)
We also try to make sure that our sleep does not disturb fellow passengers – yes, it is possible. Did you happen to sit next to a delinquent whose head kept falling on your shoulder? Or next to someone who was snoring mercilessly? Annoying, right? So let’s keep others in mind so that the flight passes in a pleasant atmosphere for everyone.
You can safely use the following tips, at least in part, in other modes of transportation as well. Of course, taking the train or coach is not hindered by the pressure differential (unless you’re going over mountains) and there are other bigger risks (like pickpockets), so you have to look at it in moderation when thinking about other modes of transportation.
However, let’s get back to our main topic – the airplane and how to sleep on it. Here are some of our tips:
Table of contents
Take a seat by the window
This is probably the most important rule of thumb if you plan to sleep during the flight. If you are flying alone, it is already practically a prerequisite to talk about comfortable sleep at all.
The seat by the window is the only one that allows us to lean quietly against the wall, which is not possible in the middle seat (the least comfortable!), and even less so in the seat by the aisle. An additional advantage of this seat is that passengers sitting next to us will not have to wake us when they want to go to the restroom.
So it’s worth spending a few zlotys/euros/dollars more if you plan to sleep just to take a window seat. It pays off. Low-cost airlines know this, which is why the seat is increasingly being charged extra (more expensive) compared to the seats next to it.
However, if you can’t make it to the window seat, lie down on the table! Our newly discovered patent! If you have trouble holding your head, you can spread the table in front of you and rest your hands on it and put your head on it. It works when other positions are already causing pain ;)
Choose night flights
If you want a long and restful sleep, choose overnight flights whenever possible. Optionally, you can choose to fly literally first thing in the morning (6:00 am) or very late in the evening (10-11 pm).
The point here is not that it should be dark outside the windows of the plane (because a night flight does not always guarantee this ;-)). First of all, it’s both about our biological clock (to make it a natural time for us to sleep), but also about our fellow passengers. On a night flight, there is a much better chance that they will also be asleep, so they won’t disturb us.
The same applies to morning and evening flights. Though with an emphasis more on the former. Usually in order to fly out at 6:00 a.m. you have to get up early in the morning, get to the airport (often from other towns and cities) and by the time you get on the plane most passengers are falling asleep and tired. This way we will also have a more peaceful sleep :)
Fly in the middle of the week
Apparently, because statistics are plentiful and new ones appear every now and then, the least occupied flights are on Wednesdays and Thursdays. This gives us a better chance of a vacant seat next to us or even a vacant whole row! Yes, it happened to us once too :)
I think I don’t need to write anymore that with this we get practically a recliner free of charge! Of course, let’s maintain at least a little culture and thus not disturb other fellow passengers.
Don’t drink sodas and coffee
In the case of coffee, the matter is simple, it is clear why we should not drink it. Unless it makes you sleep nicely. Energetics and other caffeinated drinks should also be avoided.
Also, do not drink carbonated beverages before a flight. And it is not just about sleeping comfortably during the flight, but also about the whole comfortable flight. Carbonated drinks plus pressure changes guarantee us bloating, and these are no longer pleasant. Neither while flying nor while sleeping.
Wear comfortable and loose clothing
It is much more comfortable to sleep when tight blouses, jeans or jackets do not restrain our movements. Even more so if all we have available to us while we sleep is an armchair-sized space :)
In addition, it’s a good idea to bring a warm sweatshirt or sweater with which to cover ourselves if necessary to make our sleep more pleasant. Not all airlines, even on long routes, give passengers a blanket to cover themselves. It is important to remember that when you cover yourself with a blanket or sweatshirt be sure to keep your seat belt fastened on top. This way, the flight attendant won’t wake you up to fasten your seat belt when, for example, the plane enters a turbulent zone.
Don’t use your phone/tablet
…unless it’s just for listening to music :)
Before bed, whether 10,000 meters above sea level or in our warm crib at home, phones, tablets and computers should not be used. They emit light, which later causes sleep problems. Therefore, do not make this mistake on the plane.
For that, music is a very pleasant addition to the flight, which helps you fall asleep. In addition, the quiet music playing in the headphones as we sleep also drowns out any noises that might wake us up.
Bring an inflatable pillow
Sizes and shapes are plentiful. In truth, any will be suitable, but it is worth testing and choosing your favorite. Such an inflatable pillow will help us to sleep in truth on any seat (whether middle or from the aisle) because we do not have to rest our head against the wall. It also helps us not to sleep on the fly catcher ;)
It’s also a good idea to bring a blindfold with you. It can be funny, in some interesting pattern ;) This way it will be harder to distract you, and also the light on the plane will not interfere.
Do you know any other interesting patents to sleep on the plane? What is your favorite way to do it? Let us know in the comments! :)
See also our other practical tips!