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Surviving Red-eye Flights

By Expert Author: Steve Robinson

If cheap travel deals, such as cheap airplane tickets, cheap vacation packages, discount hotel rooms, cheap auto rentals, and discount travel packages are desirable, then sometimes the cheapest airfares can be found on overnight flights commonly called red-eye flights.

The following are suggestions on how to get through red-eye flights and arrive better rested and functional, according to Smarter Travel:

• Whenever possible do not take a flight that makes a late night connection. You will be far more likely to be able to sleep while in the air if you travel via a nonstop red-eye to your destination.

• Select the right seat for you to get the best rest. Window seats are usually preferable since you will not have passengers trying to climb over you while in flight and you will be able to rest your head (preferable on a piece of clothing you have bunched up) on the side wall of the plane. If you know up front you will need to visit the rest room several times while in the air, then reserve an aisle seat.

• Wear comfortable clothing that can help you sleep onboard. Ideally passengers should wear loose fitting clothing made of breathable fabrics. Avoid clothes that pinch, pull or squeeze. Taking your shoes off after being seated often maximizes comfort.

• Prepare for a red-eye flight by bringing an eye mask to block out light, earplugs to muffle ambient cabin noise, and warm socks. Many people also find that packing a light blanket can help induce sleep in the air.

• Find, purchase, and carry-on the travel pillow must likely to help you sleep. Different travel pillows are designed for many different types of fliers. U shaped pillows are best for passengers who sleep easily on planes and do not suffer from neck problems. The oblong Travelrest pillow is good for side sleepers. Stomach sleepers and those who often fall asleep while in the air on the tray table should check out the Skyrest pillow. Fliers who suffer from mid sleep head bobbing should look at the Relax Ally headband.

• Even though being well hydrated is important when flying, if sleep is your priority on a red-eye, you should limit your fluid intake for two hours prior to departure. Remember to try to drink extra water towards the end of your flight. Dehydration worsens the symptoms of jet lag.

• If you find sleeping on a plane challenging, then consider medicating yourself either with sleeping pills or over the counter natural or homeopathic medications that have drowsiness as a side effect.

• Take appropriate steps before boarding your flight. Avoid caffeine and alcohol right before departure and eat a light well balanced meal. Immediately prior to boarding wash your face and brush your teeth. Not only are these good hygiene practices, these actions signal to the body that it is time to sleep.

• Wake up properly by drinking plenty of water and eating a balanced breakfast at the appropriate hour in your destination’s time zone. Avoid drinking too much caffeine or alcohol late in the day because it can impede your next night’s sleep. Upon landing expose yourself to lots of natural light to signal to your body that it is daytime.

• Take it easy the first day you reach your destination. Do not schedule big meetings or all day activities your first day. Make a point of getting to sleep at a reasonable hour.

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