In-Flight Snoozing: Getting The Best Possible Sleep On A Plane

Having to sleep anywhere besides a nice comfortable bed can be difficult for many people. This is especially true when trying to get some shuteye on a flight, whether it’s for business or pleasure. However, getting the right amount of sleep is essential. Here are some tips to help you fall asleep in flight.

Comfort is key

Flying economy means that usually the plane is fairly cramped, unlike first class flights which provide a small, single mattress. Airline seats are not the most relaxing things to snooze on, but there are ways to make them more bearable. Unfortunately, flying in your pyjamas would be frowned upon, but you can still wear loose, comfortable clothes in breathable fabric like cotton that you can move around in easily. Layers are good too for the changing temperatures on an aeroplane. The jury is still out on removing shoes or not as your feet can swell in flight, but make sure your shoes are well fitting and good for walking (no six inch heels, ladies!) and if you do remove them, make sure your feet and socks are clean. You can always wear slippers or airline socks if you are worried about swelling.

On the plane

Check you have a blanket and pillow when you board and request one if you don’t (or snag one on the neighbouring seat if it is free) as they can run out. You can always bring your own neck pillow for extra comfort and also an eye mask and earplugs to help block out light and noise. To reduce disturbance during the flight try to get a good seat when you book. Window seats mean you can lean against something and no one has to climb over you and you can pull down the window shade.

The position of the seat on the plane is important too. Too far to the back means close to the galley and the seats do not recline in the back row. At the very front means extra leg room but it is also close to the toilets and possibly noisy children as this row is usually for families. In some emergency exit rows, the seats do not recline and the armrests cannot be raised, leaving you upright and confined for the flight. You can check seating plans before you fly to find the best seat for you. To help with leg room try to have a small carry on or store it overhead with anything you might need at the top for easier access.

Be ready to sleep

If you want to get some sleep in flight avoid caffeine beforehand and whilst flying. Also resist the temptation of the in-flight entertainment. Listen to soothing music if that helps you drift off but avoid the films and TV shows. You can take a sleep aid but make sure it is something that will work and won’t leave you too groggy when you land. Recline your seat (check that the person behind you does not mind first) and loosen your seatbelt but keep it fastened and visible, if you have a blanket. You can also let a flight attendant know you will be sleeping so they won’t disturb you unless necessary.

Keeping proper sleeping patterns is key to successful travel. Follow these tips and you can arrive at your destination refreshed and ready to go.

Our guest blogger is Zoe, a health blogger and freelance writer who is currently writing on behalf of Archers Sleep Centre. 

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