The Most Sleep-Friendly Airlines
This content was created by the National Sleep Foundation.
Get ready for takeoff—and truly restful shut-eye—on these carriers.
Hopping on a plane can bring excitement and joy—that is, unless you’re trying to get some sleep crunched into a tiny seat on an overnight flight. Luckily, many airlines are beginning to understand that travelers (especially those on business trips) need quality rest while in the air. These four carriers are at the forefront. Air France Here, you can really stretch out: Air France’s business cabin seats—casually referred to as cocoons—fold out flat to a length of six-and-a-half feet. The armrests lower completely so you can find your most comfortable sleep position (instead of being penned in between the rests). Each seat offers direct aisle access, which is good for mid-flight bathroom breaks, and attendants provide down pillows and duvets in cool, calming tones of blue and gray. You can even pop on noise-cancelling headphones for the most restful slumber. JetBlue Already an airline for the modern traveler, JetBlue offers point-to-point flights and brands itself in ads as fun and hip. So it’s no surprise that the company recently launched Mint, their premium, coast-to-coast flight program. It offers flat-bed seats in the front of the cabin, four of which are suites for those who want extra privacy. Plus, the seats have a massage feature and customizable firmness, so you can really get a good rest while you're in the air. (Added extras: Birchbox amenities, DirecTV, and Blue Marble Ice Cream for dessert—yum!) Virgin Atlantic Known for its in-air luxury, Virgin Atlantic’s Upper Class suite is a boon for sleepy business travelers. The seats here are arranged herringbone-style to provide ample room to move around, and fold out into six-and-a-half-foot beds with the touch of a button. There’s a storage ottoman where you can stash your bag and create maximum legroom, and you’ll get a full-size pillow, duvet, and fleece blanket to keep you comfortable. Some flights provide pajamas so your clothes don’t get mussed. United This U.S. carrier boasts more 180-degree flat seats in business class than any other airline, so you can spread out on overnight flights. Flight attendants will provide you with a cozy duvet and pillow, as well as an amenity kit for washing up. Plus, when you land, you can head to the United Arrivals Lounge (available in select locations), where you can enjoy breakfast and even a quick shower before getting on with your day—so you don't have to worry about any post-flight bedhead during your business meeting! Etihad Airways The national airline of the United Arab Emirates, Etihad takes sleep seriously: The company offers a three-room suite called The Residence that has a full-length bed, among other amenities. If the $43,000 round-trip price tag is out of your reach, Etihad's first-class accommodations offer all-natural, sustainable mattresses and bedding, and a feather duvet and pillows for comfort. You’ll also enjoy a toiletry kit complete with pillow mist and pulse-point oil for relaxing. Emirates Travelers who want total sleep comfort can choose to fly in a First Class Private Suite, which comes equipped with privacy doors, a mini-bar, adjustable ambient lighting, and a seat that converts to a fully flat bed with a mattress. Business class travelers can enjoy seats that fold down to a 79-inch flat bed. While not all airlines offer luxe sleep-inducing amenities, many do have 180-degree flat beds in business class to encourage rest. These include Qatar, Delta, American, British Airways, Qantas, and Air Canada.
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