When you’re planning your next vacation, one of the questions you might ask yourself is “How can I get the most out of my trip?” One of the best ways to get the most out of your trip is to make sure you have enough sleep. Not only does sleep help us recover from stress, it also helps us enjoy our time off. If you want to learn more about why sleep is so important, check out this post. In this post, we explain what you need to know about the relationship between travel and sleep, including how to improve your sleep quality and quantity when you travel.
Here are some tips to help you achieve quality sleep while traveling:
Travel and Sleep Strategically
Before you leave for your trip, move your bedtime an hour earlier than you normally do. On the second evening, add another hour, and on the third day, add an additional. Gamaldo says to expect one day per time zone to take for your body to adjust to a new time zone.
Practicing Healthy Habits
It’s natural to want to splurge during a vacation. But you can still benefit from following healthier eating habits as much as possible:
- Eat wisely: A healthy diet should include plenty of fruits and vegetables, and make sure to pay close attention to your meals on travel days. Make sure you stay hydrated but avoid aerated drinks, other than water you can opt for natural juices without artificial sweetenings.
- Consume alcohol and caffeine in moderation: Alcohol can cause problems with your sleep if consumed too late in the evening, while caffeine stimulates you if it’s consumed late in the day.
- Get daily exercise: You don’t have to put in an hour of intensive cardio exercises every day, but you do need to get up and move around more than just sitting stiffly at some place.
- Utilize relaxation techniques: The most common methods of calming the mind and body are breathing exercises and mindfulness meditation, which can reduce stress and often make it easier to fall asleep.
Build a Travel Sleep Kit
A travel sleep kit that includes an eye mask, earplugs, and other nighttime essentials can help you get more sleep when traveling.
For travelers who want to take their own products, it’s not always easy to find a travel kit that provides everything you need to have a smooth trip so curate your own sleep kit for travel.
Here are a few other things to consider packing in your travel sleep kit:
- Earplugs or noise-canceling headphones.
- Sleeping bag liner to avoid scratchy sheets.
- Pajamas or other comfy clothes.
- Compact or inflatable travel pillow.
- Sleep mask.
- Snacks that are healthy and easy to carry.
- Machine or app that produces white noise.
- Water bottle to stay hydrated.
- Audio recordings or an app for meditation.
Sleeping on Planes, Trains, and Buses
Some people have difficulty sleeping on planes, trains, and buses. For others, it’s a real challenge.
If you’re nervous about not sleeping during flights, try to avoid making travel plans that depend on sleeping in transit.
Getting in late or staying in bed all day might be tempting, but if you don’t get any rest or sleep you can backfire and ruin your trip.
Whether you find that you need some shut-eye on a plane, train, or bus, it’s important to be as comfortable as possible:
- Wearing loose-fitting and breathable clothing, and bringing an extra layer in case it’s chilly.
- If you can, you should recline your chair. Studies have found that it improves both the quantity and quality of your sleep.
- Put your head in an opaque bag or mask and block out distractions with music or movies to help you get to sleep.
- Keep a neck pillow or small bag of clothes nearby that you can use to support your head.
Sleeping can be refreshing if you’re short on sleep while traveling, but it’s important to avoid taking too many naps. If you nap for too long, you could end up groggy. Avoid too long naps in the late afternoon and evening as it will disrupt your night’s sleep.
You can reap the benefits of naps without many downsides, and you should try to nap for no more than 30 minutes and a maximum of 60 minutes. The best time to nap is usually after lunch, and naps later in the day should be avoided.
Create a Jet Lag Plan
You don’t have to wait until you cross time zones to begin working with time zone shifts. It’s important to adjust your routine before you leave to help you get a good night’s sleep while traveling. And fortunately, the app Timeshifter takes the guesswork out of the process by creating personalized jet lag plans for travelers.
Time Shifter can help you plan how to spend your time in any destination with its intelligent calendar, which includes information on sunrise and sunset times, travel modes, local health & safety advice, and so much more. You get access to everything on your first day free, but after that, you’ll need to buy a subscription to get personalized jet lag plans for future travel.
But what if you are already facing trouble sleeping due to jet lag? We already have you covered with “Jet lag and it’s effects on sleep”.
A relaxing vacation or visit to loved ones shouldn’t mean missing out on your beauty rest. You shouldn’t have to put up with lost sleep when you should be able to relax. Sticking to a certain schedule while you’re away from home can have a big impact on your ability to get the quality of sleep you need. When traveling to a different country, be careful not to miss out on your rest.
If you want to know more about different sleep related disorder check out here.