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Are you dreading the thought of a long-haul flight but don’t want to spend an entire day traveling? Well, you are not alone. Many of us face the difficult choice of taking a long flight during the day and wasting it entirely on travel or spending the night traveling. Red-eye flights are an easy solution to this conundrum. Red-eye flights or overnight flights are a convenient and cost-effective way to travel long distances without sacrificing precious daylight hours. Deriving its name from the bleary red-eyed look, it often leaves on the face of passengers, red-eye flights have their fair share of pros and cons.

In this article, we will explore what are red-eye flights, their pros and cons, and tips that can help you survive and thrive on your overnight journey.

What Are Red Eye Flights?

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Red eye flights are overnight flights that leave late at night and arrive early in the morning, typically between 10 pm and 6 am. They are called red eye flights because of the fatigue they can cause passengers.

These flights are typically scheduled for longer journeys, such as international or cross-country flights. They are incredibly convenient for people who want to spend the maximum time possible at their destination without worrying too much about the cost or daytime travel.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Red Eye Flights

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Red eye flights have both advantages and disadvantages. Let’s discuss them in detail.


  • Cost-effective: Red eye flights are usually more affordable than daytime flights. Airlines often slash ticket prices to attract more passengers to red eye flights.
  • Saves Time: Taking a red eye flight means arriving at your destination early. This gives you an entire day to explore or attend to business matters.
  • Less Crowd: As you may have already concluded, not everyone prefers red eye flights. Therefore, there’s a good chance of having fewer passengers on the flight. So you get shorter queues, faster security checks, and more space to spread out in the cabin.
  • Opportunity to Sleep: The flight schedule of red eye flights usually matches your regular sleeping hours. So, you get to sleep on the plane and wake up well-rested and ready to spend the following day exploring.


  • Difficulty in Sleeping: Red eye flights allow you to sleep at your normal time. However, sleeping on a plane can be difficult, especially for passengers who need absolute quiet and comfort.
  • Jet Lag: Disturbance in your sleep patterns can leave you jet-lagged after a red eye flight. So, there’s a fair chance of you reaching the destination cranky, without quality rest, and red-eyed.
  • Traveling With Children: The prospect of traveling with children, whether your own or other passengers’, does not appeal much during a long overnight flight. If the children are cranky, it might be difficult for you to feel rested.
  • Limited Amenities: Red eye flights typically have limited amenities available. So you may not find multiple food, beverages, and entertainment options.

Expert Tips to Survive Red Eye Flights

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Ready to tackle your red eye flight with confidence? Surviving an overnight flight can be a challenge whether you’re a seasoned traveler or a first-time flier. But with the right strategies, you can arrive at your destination feeling refreshed. Here are some tips to help you get the most out of your red eye flight.

  • Adjust to Your Destination’s Time Zone: If you are traveling to a different time zone, the best way to survive your overnight trip is to adjust to that time zone beforehand. Adjust your sleep schedule a few days before the journey, especially if you plan to stay at the destination for more than a week.
  • Book a Flight That Suits Your Sleep Habits: Try to book a red eye flight that suits your sleep habits. For example, if you usually sleep at 11 pm, try to get a 10 pm flight. This may give you a better chance of falling asleep once on board.
  • Pick a Window Seat: Window seats are considered the best for sleeping. You won’t have to deal with the disturbance of the passenger sitting next to you going to the restroom. Since the chances of disruption are less, you will have better luck with having a restful sleep.
  • Avoid Alcohol: Most people believe a glass or two of wine can help them sleep better. And while you may fall asleep, the sleep will not be restful. Drinking alcohol also increases your chances of waking up dehydrated. Therefore, it is always better to avoid taking any alcohol before or during the flight.
  • Pack the Right Things: Packing things that help you sleep comfortably is equally important as picking the right seat. Carry a sleep mask and earplugs to drown out unwanted light and noises. Keep your travel pillow and a blanket in case the cabin is cold.
  • Have a Small Meal Before Boarding: Consider having your meal before boarding. Since you might plan on sleeping during the flight, it is best to have a nutritious meal before departure. Take a light and well-balanced meal to avoid any potential digestive discomfort during the flight.
  • Follow a Morning Routine: Wake up sometime before the flight lands to follow your morning routine. This will help you begin your day normally. Consider freshening up to prepare yourself for the day.

Long Flight Essentials You Should Not Miss

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The best way to thrive on a red eye flight is by sleeping. And not just sleeping, but sleeping well. Here is a list of essentials you should carry to have a good time during your flight. Remember, following a nighttime routine is the best way to make your brain believe you are ready to sleep.

  • Toothbrush: If you habitually brush your teeth at night, follow this routine on the flight. Carry your toothbrush and toothpaste to brush your teeth before sleeping.
  • Eye mask: Light is the bane of good sleep. Therefore, carry a good eye mask to block unwanted light during the flight.
  • Earplugs: Like light, unwanted noise is also the bane of good sleep. Therefore, use earplugs or noise-canceling headphones to block out noise.
  • Travel Pillow and Blanket: A travel pillow and blanket can make or break your sleep. Carry a pillow that provides proper support to your head and a blanket that gives you warmth in a cold cabin.

The Key Takeaway

From taking advantage of reduced crowds to traveling cheaper, there are plenty of reasons why red eye flights suit travelers. Red eye flights may initially seem daunting, but with planning and preparation, you can turn them into a valuable part of your travel routine. Use these survival tips to make the most of your overnight journey and enjoy a comfortable experience from takeoff to touchdown.

To book the best and most affordable red eye flights, consider Suffares!

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