This blog post was updated on May 28, 2020.

If you’re looking for a way to score some cheap tickets and arrive at your destination with plenty of time to play, booking cheap airline flights in the early morning is often the way to go. But for those of us who aren’t exactly chipper before the crack of dawn, it can be a real challenge to feel both positive and awake. When you don’t have a game plan, you might wonder whether getting up before the sun is really worth it. But as long as you follow these tips, you’ll be able to survive that early morning flight like a true pro.

Pack in Advance

If you have to get up at 2 or 3 a.m., you can’t possibly expect to be in the right frame of mind to do any serious packing. In your groggy state, you might easily forget a toiletry bag or laptop that’s sitting out in plain sight. That’s why you should get all your packing squared away at least a day or two in advance. Take your shower the day or night before you leave to ensure you don’t leave any bathroom necessities behind. All you’ll have to do upon waking is wash your face, brush your teeth, and zip up all your luggage before heading out the door.

Reserve Your Transportation

When you don’t plan on leaving your car at the airport or when you’re getting ready for your return flight, you can’t afford to leave transportation details until the last minute. That’s especially true with early morning airline flights. If you don’t book these details in advance, you could risk arriving late to the airport. You can easily pre-schedule a taxi or Uber, and many hotels will offer to work out these arrangements for you, too. This can help you avoid stress, allowing you a far more restful flight.

Think Twice About Caffeine

Some frequent flyers swear by those cups of coffee to get them through early airline flights — especially when flying internationally. But smart morning travelers actually avoid caffeine so that they can sleep on the plane. It’s important to really know your body and your own tolerance for caffeine so that you can determine whether that first cup of coffee at 4 a.m. is really the best idea. When you get your caffeine fix that morning, time that first cup with your ideal sleep-travel schedule. Finally, don’t forget to hydrate. This will keep your body feeling good even when you’re running on very little sleep.

Get Comfortable

One of the best ways to survive early or long flights is to make sure you’re completely comfortable. That means forgoing restrictive, itchy garments and opting for breathable, roomy ones instead (think linen and loafers). Avoid anything that may dig into your skin or require constant adjustment. It’s always a good idea to wear an outfit you can layer if you get too hot or too cold on the plane. And, of course, don’t forget to wear comfortable footwear! You won’t fare well if you’re cranky and uncomfortable before you even board the plane.

If you’re hoping to sleep on the plane, make sure you have some sort of travel pillow on hand. Many people struggle to sleep on airplanes because their head and neck are not secure; they tip over or nod their head as they doze, which prevents restful sleep. Some airlines now have folding headrests to keep your head in place, but a comfy travel pillow will work, too.

Don’t Overstimulate Yourself

In the digital age, it’s only natural that you’d rely on your tablet, laptop, or phone to keep you occupied while waiting to board or even mid-flight. But be careful not to be too glued to your screen! Not only will it drain your gadgets’ batteries, but it can also make it harder for you to sleep during your flight. That blue light is no joke! If you do need to use your devices, lower your light settings and switch to the yellow light. This can make it easier to doze and even minimize eye strain or headaches — and you’ll definitely be thankful for that once you land.

Early flights can be tough to get through, but they can also allow you to spend more time in your chosen destination and travel on the cheap. Another way to save time and money on your next vacation? Compare your flight routes and costs through our website. For more, contact us today.


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