A travel pillow is essential whether you’re traveling by rail, air or car as it will make the trip more comfortable. The right pillow isn’t just comfortable however, as it must also be easy to transport and can be used in tight spaces and unusual positions.
There are a lot of these available on Amazon of course, but which one should you buy?
No need to spend hours comparing them, as the best are listed here.
Update: We’ve been using a Aeros Pillow Premium Sea to Summit for a while now and all I can say is WOW!
Very compact, easy to inflate with approximately 5-6 puffs and quality construction…and extremely comfortable. This is now my go to travel pillow.
Davidsbeenhere Inflatable Travel Pillow with Cloth Cover
The Davidsbeenhere (DBH) pillow can inflate in just 7 to 10 breaths, and if you squeeze the valve this becomes even easier.
The section design also provides optimal support for your neck as you rest, and it comes with a Softouch micro fleece outer texture for comfort.
Because of its size, the DBH is easy to carry and won’t be a hassle in the airport and unlike other travel pillows, the DBH has been tested on road trips and flights across the Atlantic, underscoring its efficiency.
The pillow is especially useful when you’re flying because that usually leads to neck discomfort and back pain.
With the DBH you can rest easy during a long flight, and it’s good to know you can convert the pillow into a carrying pouch small enough to fit in a bag.
Figuring out how to inflate the pillow won’t be an issue, but you should check out the instructions to avoid making mistakes.
When you’re inflating the pillow, make sure that the nozzle is pinched firmly and remember to cap the nozzle so the air doesn’t get out.
If you’re tired of those headaches and neck aches after each flight, then the DBH can provide some relief.
The pillow isn’t just comfortable, but with the way the pillow has been designed, it will provide ear cover and minimize noise.
There are a lot of good, practical features on the DBH, but what it comes down to is it delivers on the essentials, that of providing comfort and convenience.
Given these facts, it’s easy to see why people like this pillow.
J Pillow, Travel Pillow – Winner of British Invention of the Year – #1 Best Selling Travel Pillow
There are a lot of things you can say about the J Pillow, but if you had to say just one, it’s that it’s going to keep your head from falling down, at the same providing support for your chin and head.
Like the other pillows here, the J Pillow can be used in cars, trains or planes and makes it easier to sleep on the road.
In fact, the pillow is comfortable enough to be used even when you’re at home, and if you have a medical condition that requires you to sleep upright, this pillow will do just fine.
Size wise the pillow isn’t that big so carrying it around won’t be a problem.
The J Pillow also provides good support for your neck, and if you’re tired and just want to rest during the flight or on a long road trip, the pillow will provide comfort even if you’re not sleeping.
Unlike other pillows, it’s not too tight and more of a snug fit than anything.
And as many reviewers have pointed out, the pillow is just as effective at home as it is on the road or midair.
There’s no question this product was designed for use while traveling, but that doesn’t change the fact that it’s also useful in other ways, and that’s always good.
Travelrest – The Ultimate Inflatable Travel Pillow. BEST Travel Pillow Ranked #1 by WSJ
The Travelrest pillow comes with complete lateral support for your upper body so you can sleep and relax for a much longer period.
Furthermore, the pillow leads to the correct neck and head alignment and prevents your head going down.
Aside from providing comfort, the Travelrest pillow is ideal for those who suffer from chronic neck pain.
The pillow inflates easily so it won’t take long to prepare it, and deflating is just as quick so you can minimize the pillow and reduce the space it’s going to take up.
The pillow also has an ergonomic design so there’s proper support for your neck, and it is adjustable as well.
You can set the pillow down your side or across your torso, or put it on like an airline seat tether.
The pillow is also versatile and can be used in different situations such as camping, cars, trains, airport terminals, and even at home.
It’s fully washable too.
If this is your first time to use this pillow, don’t be surprised if it only takes 3 to 4 breaths to fully inflate it, and deflating and rolling only takes moments.
One of the more difficult aspects with most travel pillows is they take too much time, but fortunately this is an exception to the rule.
As an inflatable, the Travelrest is quite comfortable, and the soft cover won’t cause any skin allergies or affect your pressure points.
What’s important is that you use it properly so both your head and neck are supported as you sit on the plane, train or car.
Aeris Best Airplane Travel Pillow – Lifetime Free Replacement Guarantee
This is a memory foam pillow that provides complete neck support as you rest during travel.
The Aeris Travel pillow, which comes with a portable bag, is machine wash safe and even comes with free ear plugs and a sleep mask.
In terms of design the Aeris looks great, but more than that, its visco-elastic memory foam contours to the shape of your neck, so you’re not going to feel any bumps.
With the memory foam, the pillow slowly yields and doesn’t offer much resistance until the weight is evenly distributed.
When you lift your weight off, the pillow will resume its original shape.
Without being too technical, it’s enough to say that the Aeris pillow will allow your neck and head to rest in a natural position regardless whether you’re on a plane or car.
The more you use the pillow the more it provides relief for any pain you’re feeling, and it also reduces the tiredness you feel, thus improving sleep quality.
Furthermore, the Aeris pillow promotes better blood circulation and gets rid of the muscle tension that you may be experiencing.
The pillow is also effective for eliminating restlessness, which is commonplace when trying to sleep during a long travel.
Tips for the Buyers
Pillows for travel come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, and while you want one that’s large enough to provide support for your head and neck, it mustn’t be too large to the point it becomes a burden to carry.
The shape however, is of immense importance because it also determines the kind of support your neck will receive as you sleep.
U-shaped pillows are the most common because they function as a cradle for your neck, and it also provides support even when you’re sitting upright.
The J shaped, like the one featured here, is just as good because the tail of the J supports your neck, and more importantly, provides chin support as well as a cushion for your head and back.
Plus, it keeps your head from falling.
The wedge-shaped pillow is designed primarily to support your spine and back, while the cylinder types reduce the pain on your back and neck.
Furthermore, these pillows can be used in different positions like lying down or sitting.
You will also find pillows shaped like collars so they go around your neck, and there’s a strap that secures the collar’s sides.
As far as material goes there are a lot of options available ranging from natural to synthetic.
When it comes to inflatable pillows however, the most commonly used is plastic, but many other kinds are now employed.
Also keep in mind that just because it’s plastic doesn’t mean it’s not comfortable, as the quality has improved greatly.
As for the inflatable vs. non-inflatable pillow, the best choice for travelers is the inflatable.
There are a lot of good non-inflatable pillows, but inflatables don’t take up as much room, easy to clean and light.
In contrast, non-inflatable pillows can be difficult to carry and too much of a hassle especially if you’re already carrying a lot of stuff.
And in terms of quality, the inflatables are not far off anyway so you really have nothing to lose.
Travel Pillow Conclusion
As to which of the travel pillow products above are the best, the answer is they should all make for a nice travel companion.
Some might prefer one over the other, but regardless which of these you pick you can expect a more comfortable time whether you’re on the road or on flight.