• Best Airplane Pillow Review: Which One Is Really The Best Airplane Pillow?

Best Airplane Pillow Review: Which One Is Really The Best Airplane Pillow?

I’ve tried around a dozen travel pillows over the years, and have some stand out favorites of plane pillows that have really helped me on the numerous long-haul flights I take (as well as the one that I think is the best airplane pillow of all). Having a neck pillow for plane travel can seem annoying to carry it around, but the benefits of airplane pillows definitely outweigh the cons.

The Best Airplane Pillow Options

Trtl Pillow

trtl airplane pillow Best Airplane Pillow Review

I’m obsessed with the Trtl pillow. It takes some getting used to but really, this is something that I highly suggest. So here’s the deal: it’s a wrap around pillow made of fleece that velcros after being wrapped around your neck like a brace. It has this plastic inside that is shaped like a “C” which curves around the neck so that when you lean to the side, it doesn’t allow your head to drop at all. It’s genius, it’s light weight, and it’s tiny so you can throw it in your carry on without taking up room. I find that in general, it’s really cozy. Most flights are cold so this is like getting extra cuddly. I sleep so well with this pillow. I take the Trtl when I’ll only need a pillow for flights – It’s not something I would use while backpacking and on a train or overnight bus. This is the best airplane pillow in my opinion. You can read a full review here.

For the best rates, you can buy this on Amazon. You can click here for rates and color options.

Therm-a-Rest Pillow

Best Airplane Pillow Review

Therm-A-Rest Compression Pillow is the best travel pillow on the planet for long term travel. PLEASE ignore how gross I look in that photo! I just wanted to show you the size of the pillow, haha. I’ve tried a handful and this one takes the cake. It’s larger than most but truly compresses smaller than any I’ve had. It rolls up inside itself. I didn’t just use it on transportation, but in hotels that had hard pillows- this was actually more comfortable! While I use the Trtl for flights more, this one I will use on flights when I’m taking it on a trip where I’m backpacking and I’ll leave the Trtl at home. As mentioned this is a little larger but still fits in the side pocket of backpacks. It’s a firmer pillow, which makes it seem more like a “real” pillow.

For the best rates, you can buy this on Amazon. You can click here for rates and color options.

REI Cocoon Ultralight Pillow

rei backpack pillow Best Airplane Pillow Review

My first ever travel pillow is the REI Cocoon Airlight Pillow. This one wraps up SO tiny when you are traveling. If you are backpacking and worried about space, this pillow is perfect. You can see the size above – it’s the exact pillow. Once opened this is actually the same dimensions as the pillow above, but it’s lighter and more like a feather pillow so it has less support. It’s going to be lighter weight and roll up smaller though, so you’ll have to weigh out which of those two is the one for you.

For the best rates, buy this directly on REI’s website. You can click here for rates and color options.

Sea to Summit Aeros Premium Traveller Neck Pillow

sea to summit pillow Best Airplane Pillow Review

The Sea to Summit blow up pillow is the best of the all blow-up pillows because it’s so padded. Typically, I do not like blow up pillows but this one is unique. The pros of blow up pillows are that they take up WAY less space but the con is that they are not as comfortable as memory foam or feather. The cheap ones are terrible and uncomfortable but there are SOME options that are great. The ones which are actually good are the ones where there is a legit pillow with some comfort on the outside and it blows up. When you lay on it, you will hardly notice it’s air inside.

For the best rates, buy this directly on REI’s website. You can click here for rates and color options.

Cabeau Evolution Cool Neck Pillow

This is going to be better than your typical wrap around neck pillow (the kind you see in all the airport shops). They aren’t terrible, but this one is SO much better. It uses dual-density memory foam with built-in cooling vents to keep you comfortable and seriously supported. It’s adjustable for 360 degrees of support and it can be compressed into a really small holder. It’s so annoying to carry around a normal neck pillow, so this is an amazing option for flying.

For the best rates, buy this directly on REI’s website. You can click here for rates and color options.

2 in 1 Eagle Creek Travel Pillow

So, feeling unsure if you want a pillow that is compressible but rolls out to a “normal” pillow or if you want a traditional airplane pillow that wraps around the neck? THIS ONE DOES BOTH! It can be arranged to be either a neck pillow or a flat normal pillow. This one is ideal for a long-term trip where you’ll be taking many flights, trains, buses, and staying in hostel rooms that might not have good pillows.

For the best rates, buy this directly on REI’s website. You can click here for rates and color options.

J Pillow Travel Neck Pillow

The J Pillow is a really unique option. It’s like a normal neck pillow except it has additional support with two more bits that stick off and keep your head straight. It’s compressible and it’s memory foam. It has amazing Amazon reviews.

TravelRest and SkyRest

These are the most extreme travel pillow options, but they do look like they work. I haven’t personally tried either of these. The first is the SkyRest Travel Pillow which is the big pillow that you sit on the tray table then lean forward onto. It’s inflatable and has very mixed reviews on Amazon. The Travelrest pillow kind of straps over like a seatbelt. It’s also inflatable and has better reviews that the Skyrest.

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Best Airplane Pillow Review: Which One Is Really The Best Airplane Pillow?

2019-04-01T22:38:59+00:00

About the Author:

Rachel Jones left a career in nursing and lived on the beaches of Goa, India for the five years. Now she lives in Mexico where she gives advice on the 40+ countries she’s visited in the last 10 years. She’s the author of two India travel e-books: Guide to India and Insider’s Guide to Goa. Her blog, Hippie in Heels, like its name, is a contradiction combining off-beat adventurous places with glamorous and bespoke travel. Hippie in Heels has been featured in ELLE, Marie Claire, Grazia, and Cosmopolitan magazines. She’s a writer for Bravo TV.

6 Comments

  1. Katarina Louise November 2, 2017 at 9:08 pm - Reply

    great advice Rach! super fancy options i never knew existed! i hate missing sleep and arriving somewhere feeling wrecked! Thanks for the tips :)

    • Rachel Jones November 3, 2017 at 10:57 am - Reply

      There is like a whole other world just with plane pillows, lol! You can borrow my Trtl one if you want and see if you like it :)

  2. […] Read More: Best Pillow for Flights […]

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  4. […] am all about my new travel pillow the Trtl pillow. I actually wrote a whole blog post about my favorite travel pillow in general, because I hoard them like a weirdo, and this one is the top of the list. For some reason, I forget […]

  5. […] Therm-A-Rest travel pillow – I like that this one is compressible and fits in the side pocket of my backpack. This is the brand REI carries. I take it on planes with me as well. Here are my favorite travel pillows. […]

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