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Arriving From Red-Eye Flights Without the Red Eyes

Those night flights are notorious for giving travellers red eyes; no surprise, the coined name stuck. Whether a night flyer has a business meeting, or an African safari scheduled on the day ahead, losing sleep is not the way to prepare for it. Here are useful tips to take advantage of decent slumber hours on red-eye trips.

Pick the Non-stop Route

If there are several possible itineraries for your destination, choose the one that brings you there in one stretch. It’s difficult enough to find sleep while several feet above sea level; it’s even more difficult to find sleep when you have a stopover. If a nonstop route isn’t available, choose the one with the longest uninterrupted stretch. If you do manage to find the ever-so-evasive sleep, it’ll be on that long continuous span of flight time.

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Choose Your Seat Location

The window is best because no one will be clambering over you to go to the rest room. Just be sure to use the rest room before the person seated next to you snuggles up to sleep, or you’ll be the one disturbing another person’s sleep. The rest room, lavatory, and the galley are busy areas, so avoid seats near them, especially if you stir at the slightest sound or movement. The seats at the front of the plane are the quietest.

Use Your Air Miles For Lie-Flat Options

Check RouteHappy or SeatGuru to know what options you have. For really long flights, especially for international carriers, bed-like seats are usually offered in the business or first class sections.

Adjust Your Body Clock Before the International Dateline Does

Depending on where you’re headed, adjust your time and condition your mind to the different time zone. It’s a given that you won’t have the best sleep ever, but don’t get a beating from jetlag, too. Avoid alcohol and don’t take sleeping pills without consulting a doctor. Before the trip, make sure to drink lots of water, but slow down on liquids and food a couple of hours before the flight to avoid tummy trouble and frequent visits to the rest room.

Cover Your Eyes With a Cloth Mask and Block Sounds With Earplugs

You can listen to soft music if you’re the type who sleeps with music. Loosen your belt and tie for a comfortable snooze.

For frequent flyers, 3 to 4 hours of uninterrupted sleep is usually enough to arrive at the airport refreshed. If, despite these tips, you still find yourself exhausted, head for the airport lounge and find the nearest rest room. Cool your face and head in the sink. This will calm and refresh you, not to mention tidy you up.

Find something to eat and drink. Coffee, fruits and nuts will provide you the energy boost you need.