4 Tips To Sleep Better When You Travel

4 Tips To Sleep Better When You Travel

If you are like most people, you can’t fall asleep when your head hits the pillow after a long day of traveling. Sleep experts say that it is very common to have difficulty sleeping when you’re away from home. The bed in your hotel or AirBnB may even be more comfortable than the one you have in your bedroom; yet, falling asleep seems near impossible. How do you get some quality shut-eye during your travels?

Why Is It Difficult To Sleep While Traveling?

According to sleep experts, there are several things that interfere with optimal shut-eye when you travel. Jet lag, as you probably know, is a primary culprit, especially if you travel to a completely different time zone. Changing time zones can affect your internal clock, making you out of sync with the local light-dark cycle. It can take a day or two to adjust to a regular sleep schedule. Additionally, the first night of your trip is usually a rough night of sleep because it is harder to sleep in a new environment. This is a known phenomenon in the rules of sleep. Sleep relies on a consistent routine, so the subtlest changes can affect your ability to fall asleep.

Even with these obstacles, you can find a way to snooze better when you’re traveling. Continue reading to learn about sleep experts’ go-to strategies for better shut-eye

Stick To Your Nightly Routine

It’s easy to fall into a routine, especially when it comes to bedtime, and breaking that routine can impact your sleep. If you’re like most people when you travel, you don’t stick to your usual nightly routine. You eat dinner at a different time, typically a later one, and you eat heavier meals and drink more alcohol. Maybe you fall asleep with the TV on in your room instead of reading before bed. You may not be able to stick to the same exact routine you would at home, but a similar routine can help prepare your brain for bedtime

Make Your Room Dark

If your bedroom has blackout curtains and you can’t sleep when light floods the room, try to mimic that setting wherever you stay during your travels. If your room has blinds, go the extra mile and hang a sheet or blanket over them to block out sunlight. Can’t figure out how to make the room darker? Slip on your sleep mask! Check the thermostat and adjust it as needed. The ideal temperature range is between 60 and 67 degrees F for an optimal night of sleep, according to several sleep studies.

Prepare For The Morning

For the majority, traveling is a chance to unwind and release any anxiety you have by not making plans. If you fall into that category, that is perfectly acceptable, but some days might call for an earlier wake up time. Maybe you have a scuba lesson or need to head up to the mountain so that you can be the first rider on the slopes. Ideally, you want to have everything you’ll need in the morning ready to go before you go to sleep. Lay out your clothes, prepare breakfast, charge your phone, and take care of anything else to eliminate early morning stress. Organizing for your morning adventure at night can help you go to bed worry-free; plus, you’ll be less likely to forget something when you take care of it the night before. 

Set An Alarm That Forces You To Get Up

It is very common to oversleep on vacation, especially after the first night. That is especially true if you spent the entire night tossing and turning. If you need to be up earlier than your body is used to, set an alarm on your phone, turn up the volume, and place it across the room. This will force you to get out of bed and prevent overuse of the snooze button. 

On a final note, try not to worry too much about sleep. If you are traveling for pleasure, enjoy that time and walk your own path. Recognize that it’s perfectly acceptable to have a night or two of imperfect sleep. As long as you get back on track to getting about seven hours per night, you are golden!



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