Turning your seat into a bed and other hacks to sleep better in economy flights

There are lots of holiday moments that are filled with excitement and fun, but the plane doesn’t tend to be one of them.

Sure, you might love the run up to the flight and a cheeky pint in the airport, but journeys by air can be cramped, uncomfortable and loud – especially in economy.

As most of us can’t shell out hundreds to fly business class we have to make do and try to make the journey more bearable.

Especially when flying long-haul where you need to get some sleep.

So, what can you do to get better sleep when flying in economy?

Sit over the wing

Former flight attendant for Emirates, Bella Sapsworth told the Metro: “Try and book a seat over wing and away from the toilets.

“The toilets are noisy and the over-wing row has more leg-room as it’s an emergency exit.

“If you ask at the check-in desk, they usually keep these seats free if the flight isn’t full – so they can swap your seat for you.”

By sitting away from the toilets you avoid being disturbed by chatting and clanging – at least for the most part.

And, a flight attendant for Wizz Air backed this up by saying it’s the best spot for children.

They said: “The front and back of the plane are always going to be high traffic areas as it’s where the bathrooms are located. Therefore, it’s likely that this is where the most distractions will be.

“It’s worth choosing your seats, accordingly, considering what is likely to entertain, and distress the child.”

Buy a foot hammock

Over on Reddit, a member of cabin crew noted: “Many many long haul flights. I travel now with a foot hammock attached to the tray table.

“Of all things I've bought and tried this works for me. It elevates my feet, I'm tall.”

Foot hammocks work a little like a foot rest would, but you can adjust the height so you feel at your most comfortable.

They’re also softer than foot rests so your feet or legs won’t go numb.

Someone else on the thread replied: “I'm not tall, but I will use a foot hammock on long flights. I always sit with my legs up, and there's no room on a plane seat , foot hammock helps that”.

You can snap up a foot hammock for around £28 on Amazon.

Drink water avoid alcohol

You may think that a stiff drink can help you to drift off on an uncomfortable flight, but alcohol also disrupts sleep.

So, you won’t get any quality winks if you’ve had too much.

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Bella said: “Drink lots of water. And avoid alcohol and coffee, because they dehydrate you.”

Staying hydrated will ensure you feel fresher when you get off the plane – especially if you’ve been in the air for hours on end.

Book a SkyCouch

This trick only works on certain airlines as not every company offers the service.

But, if you can book a SkyCouch then you’ve essentially just snagged yourself business style comfort in economy.

Adele Barbaro, a blogger known asThe Real Mumma, flew from Melbourne, in Australia, to Los Angeles, in the US, on a mammoth trip that takes longer than 14 hours.

And, she spent £104 on Air New Zealand for the nifty row of seats that converts into a full bed.

Adele wrote about the clever option on Facebook and said: "If there is two of you travelling, you can purchase a third seat at half price and you will get the entire row to yourself.

"The leg rests all rise to meet the chair in front and create a completely flat, large play or sleep area. Paul and Harvey had a bed and so did Chloe and I.

"It’s the next best thing to business (but way cheaper) and perfect for long haul flights with young families. And we all slept."

Plus, All Nippon Airways (ANA) which operates out of Japan, has introduced theANA COUCHii– where economy passengers can combine three or four seats to make a bed.

Do you have a travel hack you want everyone to know about? Tell us at[email protected]

Pull an all nighter

This tip isn’t for the faint of heart, but those desperate to sleep on the plane – such as people flying to a vastly different time zone – may choose to forgo sleep the night before.

A frequent flyer on Reddit said: “I travel a lot and the best way to sleep on a long flight is literally pull an all nighter before. This is only really advisable for long flights that are 12+ hours.”

While another added: “Don’t sleep the night before or sleep less. Ear plugs and eye mask and neck pillow.”

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