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Tips for Tired Travelers: Sleeping on Planes, in Hotels and More

February 25, 2010 | Posted in: Tips and Tricks,Travel Tips

tips tired travelers sleep planes hotels

Did you know March 7 – 13 is National Sleep Awareness Week?

No, I didn’t either. But I do know traveling can be tiring – the hassles of security, the jet lag, and more.

So I’ve got some tips that may help – I haven’t tried them all, though; some are courtesy of the experts at the Cleveland Clinic Sleep Disorders Center and WebMD

Tips: Preventing Jet Lag

- Before traveling, try to move your sleep times and meals closer to your destination time zone

- On planes, noise-canceling headphones make sleeping easier

- If it’ll be morning when you arrive at your destination, try to sleep on the plane; if night, try to stay awake

- Once you arrive, if you must sleep, limit yourself to two hours

- Avoid social isolation – be around people

- Avoid too much caffeine and alcohol

Keep reading for tips on adjusting to new surroundings – plus a New York City hotel that wants you to get a very good rest

Tips: Adjusting to New Surroundings

- Pack a few personal objects from home (photos or a coffee mug)

- Make sure blinds or curtains block out all light

- Room too hot or cold? That could make sleeping tougher (WebMD suggests 75-degrees is too warm and 54, too cold)

Tips: Learning the Art of Sleep at a Fancy Hotel

Okay, this comes from a press release, but I thought it was fun, so I’ll share:

The Benjamin, a posh New York hotel, is offering a two night “The Art of Sleep” package, starting at $289 a night – which provides you with the following:??

- Consultation with the hotel’s Sleep Concierge

- Nightly bedtime snack of The Benjamin’s famous PB&J finger sandwiches

- Discount on a “sleep inducing spa treatment”

- Kit that includes an eye mask, lavender bath salts, a “soothing CD” and more

Well, it’s working. I’m feeling drowsy already…

4 Responses to “Tips for Tired Travelers: Sleeping on Planes, in Hotels and More”

  1. Leslie Woodhouse says:

    I pack along these items to ensure good sleep on the road:
    1) eye mask
    2) lavender bath salts
    3) melatonin
    4) valerian root extract (liquid or pill form)
    They seem to work for me.
    Wishing you good rest & happy travels, all!

  2. Rick Seaney says:


    A prepared traveler is a happy traveler – thanks for sharing.


  3. Stephanie says:

    I use to never be able to sleep on planes. I tried a bunch of different herbal remedies as well as Dramamine, noise canceling headphones, and a bunch of other stuff. None of it worked.

    But the more I travel the easier it gets. On a recent trip back to the US from Singapore I passed out for a good four hours. Sure, not a full nights sleep, but it was better than nothing. Maybe I’m getting use to flying and I’m not as stressed anymore? Or maybe that trip just really exhausted me? I don’t know. But I’m grateful for it.

  4. Rick Seaney says:


    I think experience definitely has something to do with it; I know some people that claim they have actually “trained” themselves to sit-on-plane, go-to-sleep. But you’re right, it’s not easy.

    I was recently in Singapore – that’s a long, long trip, isn’t it?


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