A complete guide to the best travel pillows in 2017

Shree Ravi

Searching for the most comfortable and best travel pillow out there? Let us help, with a rundown of all the best neck pillows for air travel and more!

Sleep is essential, irrespective of whether you are in a car, on a train or on a plane. Some folks tend to sleep very well within a matter of seconds, whilst others require a comfortable setting. However, some issues can make travel uncomfortable to any person. The issues that are commonly faced by all types of sleepers can range from having a stiff neck, pain in the back, to even posture issues later on if you happen to be a frequent traveler. So how can one negate all these issues?

Comfort and sleep often go hand in hand, if you are comfortable, then you are well on your way to having a good rest, as well as a painless experience. Travel pillows can provide that extra bit of comfort you need, even in tight spaces, to give you a painless sleeping experience. We’ve compiled a comprehensive list of all our favorite travel pillows. You can find everything from neck pillows, silky smooth microfiber pillows for kids, to hug-able inflatable pillows. Some solutions can appear strange but the benefits most definitely transcend the awkwardness!


1. Total Pillow 2017 – Microbead Travel Pillow


Provides: Neck, Back and Knee Support

Type: Microbead tech

Key Features:

  • Firm Feel
  • Malleable
  • 2 to 3 year (daily use)
  • Relatively easy to clean
  • Great value for money

If you are looking for a great mixture of comfort and versatility, then the Total Pillow is the one for you. This pillow is ideal for long flights, where you might change positions multiple times. The Microbead tech allows the pillow to flex and twist, so that it can support your spine, and ultimately ease tension. You can use it in multiple ways. I.e. As a car seat cushion, back brace, neck rest etc.

The surface material is a combination of nylon spandex and fleece fabric that is extremely soft on the skin, whilst having a good amount of rigidity to support the spine. The dimensions are 13.7x11x2.8 inches. With this pillow you can have a comfortable flight, without any sore shoulders or neck aches. The pillow is extremely durable and can last you many years.


2. Aeris Memory Foam Set


Provides: Neck Support

Type: Memory Foam, Microfiber Exterior

Key Features:

  • Very high-quality memory foam
  • Washable exterior
  • Portable
  • Can’t double up as a spinal support
  • A+ Customer support

The Aeris pillow set offers amazing comfort for the frequent flyer. The super quality Visco elastic- memory foam can be easily shaped to suit your neck. Typically, a memory foam pillow is known to heat up, but the Aeris memory foam has ventilation holes that prevent this from occurring.

This pillow is perfect for sleeping on planes, buses, trains and even reading by the pool or on the beach. The pillow displays amazing compression, with the way it bends into the carry bag. The eye mask and the foam ear plugs make for a complete and stress-free sleeping experience.


3. J-Pillow


Provides: Chin, Neck and head support

Type:  Polyester Fiber filling

Key Features:

  • Machine Wash & Dry
  • One side support only
  • Ideal for window seats
  • Lightweight

A key feature that we love about the J-Pillow, is that you can pop it into the washing machine and it’s just fine. This is a super hygienic option for those who accidentally drool on airplanes in their sleep. A minor drawback is that it can be a bit hard to carry at times, despite its light weight. If you are someone who sleeps pretty still, and is comfortable with leaning on one side for a long duration of time, then this solution is ideal for you. If you move around a lot, then you might have to pick up the j-Pillow and shift it to the other side.

This design is probably more suited for short flights, car drives and for reading on the couch comfortable. The chin support also ensures your head doesn’t fall forward a lot.


4. Trtl Pillow


Provides: Neck Support

Type: Polyester (synthetic) fleece

Key Features:

  • Extremely Compact
  • Ultra soft neck support
  • Washable
  • Weighs a mere 128 grams
  • Suitable for people older than 16 years of age.

Pronounced “Turtle”, this is probably the best travel pillow for tall people. We like the fact that the Trtl keeps your neck in a comfortable position at all times, and you can even place the scarf partially over your mouth too to prevent spreading of germs. The U shaped memory pillows might not be great for tall people, but the Trtl travel pillow gives you great support without strangling your neck.

Most airlines will give you a basic pillow during your flights. You can use the basic pillow along with the Trtl to get even better results. A cool and comfy design to prevent stiff neck among frequent travelers. This pillow is best suited for a seated position only, and might not be comfortable if you are lying down. You can place the “supported side” in the front or the back to give you all round support.


5. Travel Rest – Ergonomic Neck / Lean in type pillow


Provides: Full lateral support

Type: Inflatable,  Memory Foam

Key Features:

  • Ideal for people suffering from Chronic Pain
  • The memory foam is thermal sensitive
  • A+ portability
  • Microfiber cover

Attention Side sleepers! This one is the pillow for you. As far as inflatable travel pillows go, this option sets the bar pretty high. The Travelrest is one of our favorites among the best travel pillow options available. We like the idea that a person can use this pillow however they like. You can deflate the pillow easily so that it conforms to your liking. A great/ hug-able solution for folks who love to have a nap in the flight, cars, trains, wheelchairs, or even an office chair.

It’s highly portable too, and barely a quarter of the size when deflated. Natural alignment and posture are important when sleeping, and the ergonomic design prevents your head from falling forward. Luxurious cover Add-ons are available too.


6. Cabeau Evolution


Provides: Full lateral support

Type: Memory Foam

Key Features:

  • Phone/ Accessory pouch
  • Can’t use with Noise Cancelling headphones
  • Ideal for long necked people

The Evolution Memory Foam pillow is a great choice for those who like to fall asleep whilst listening to music. The neck aid is pretty good, but is not suited for petite people as it may cover a large part of the face too. The Cabeau travel neck pillow does a great job of not letting your head move forward and cause neck pain. The pillow comes with a water resistant bag, and you can compress it to 1/4th the size, when you are on the move. The outer surface is an incredibly soft velour, which can be removed and washed. Our favorite feature was the phone pouch as it allows you to fall asleep and stay hands free.


7. Daydreamer Neck Pillow


Provides: Neck Pillow

Type: Inflatable

Key Features:

  • Luxury softness
  • Push-button inflation
  • Highly durable
  • Super lightweight

One of the best inflatable travel pillows in the market. We were pleasantly surprised by the effectiveness of this U-Shaped inflatable design. It is an extremely soft pillow that offers great relief for neck pain. The characteristic we loved the most, is that you can inflate and deflate this with a simple push of a button. You can wear the pillow the entire time, and inflate it from scratch in about 45 seconds. You can adjust the firmness by deflating the pillow, based on your preference. It weighs a mere 8.8 ounces, and rests blissfully on one’s neck.

It comes with an ultra-soft micro velvet cover, which can be machine washed, as well as a compact pack sack.


8. The Ostrich Pillow by Studio Banana Things


Type: Flexible fabric with micro balls.

Key Features:

  • A very “different” design
  • Super comfy
  • A bit pricey
  • Can’t be machine washed or dried

The wacky, yet surprisingly comfortable ostrich pillow is perfect if you want to disconnect from your surroundings. It’s suitable for people older than 16 years of age. An opening is provided for ventilation near the mouth.

P.S: If you are having a long day, the top customer reviews section on the product page is a real treat.


9. Grand Trunk Hooded Neck Pillow


Provides: Neck assistance

Type: Memory Foam

Key Features:


  • Adjustable hood
  • Pocket for iPods and small devices


  • Heat retention
  • Not easily washable

If you don’t like it when other people watch you sleep, then this travel pillow is suited for you. The addition of the hood to the high-quality memory foam provides a great level of comfort. We feel like this pillow is ideal in cold environments, where the hoodie will keep you warm. If you are in a warm car or train then heat retention might be too much.

The pillow is about 9 inches high and 11 inches wide, which is ideal for small to average sized folks. A pair of ear plugs along with this option is perfect for an undisturbed and comfortable sleeping session, on a long flight.


10. Skysiesta Travel Pillow


Provides: Head Support

Type: Polyurethane foam

Key Features:

  • Double-sided head support
  • Value for money
  • Much better than high odor plastic inflatables

This pillow is fantastic for reducing the stress on your neck, especially if you like to twist and turn your head on all sides when you sleep. The major advantage this has over other innovative designs, is that it has two foam pads. In most other solutions different to the u-shaped designs you either have to sleep to one side or move the pillow when you turn. With the Skysiesta you don’t have to worry about any of those. The pillows also muffle engine noise, if you happen to be seated by the window. You can sleep comfortably for a long time, thanks to the head support and the soft velour cover. You get an adjustable eye mask and a nylon bag that can be attached to any carry-on suitcase.


11. Disney Frozen Travel Neck Pillow


Provides: Neck support for kids

Type: Microfiber/ Polyester (based on the design)

Key Features:

  • Perfect for 2 to 7 year olds
  • Frozen themed pillow for girls
  • Partly machine washable
  • Extremely soft

A fun neck pillow for children to wear on long trips. Can be used easily in cars so that your children can cosy up whenever they want to. The dimensions are 14x10x1 inches. The size makes it extremely portable. Overall, a super cute design that we are sure fans of frozen will love.


12. Kinder Fluff Kids Travel Pillow


Type: Polyester cluster fiber interior / 100 % cotton exterior

Key Features:

  • Resistant to bacteria
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Washable & durable
  • Value for money

Safety and comfort are often at the top of the list when we look for a pillow for our kids, and the Kinder Fluff delivers both. Since the pillow is not treated with any chemicals used in processing regular cotton, it is a healthy option for children. The fibrous interior ensures that the pillow is not too fluffy or flat, and maintains a nice balance.

The product weighs a mere 6.4 ounces. The dimensions are 18x3x13 inches, and it can be taken on board a plane, placed in the crib or used in the back seat of a car. This pillow is awesome for toddlers who like to roll around and sleep in multiple positions. The fabric is extremely soft and silky too! Your kids will love it.


13. JetComfy Travel Pillow


Provides: Head & Neck Support

Type: Memory Foam, Foldable

Key Features:

  • Ergonomic design for comfort
  • Compact
  • Optimized for arm rests.

The best way to remove stress from your neck, is to take the weight off through supporting mechanisms. JetComfy was specifically designed for this purpose. It doesn’t have too much of an effect on the spinal posture though. You can adjust everything from the height to the tilt. The JetComfy was designed to latch onto almost all arm rests, including the ones you find in cars.

If you are really unlucky, and have a person in the next seat on the plane who likes to hog the arm rest, then this solution might pose a problem. The fold-able design makes it very compact, and it is much easier to carry, when compared to a non-inflatable pillow.


14. HoodiePillow


Provides: Neck Assistance

Type: Inflatable

Key Features:

  • Sweat shirt material hoodie
  • Great price
  • Small size enabling more neck movement
  • Ultra-light weight

A cheap inflatable pillow for those looking to sleep peacefully during their travels. The hoodie is made from 80% cotton and 20% polyester and offers some privacy to the wearer. The adjustable strings come in really handy when head sizes differ. We didn’t much like the fact that we needed to manually blow to inflate the pillow. The HoodiePillow offers amazing value for money, and is appropriate for people who are okay with their neck bending by small amounts.


15. Zuwit Bendable Neck Support Pillow


Provides: Neck, Hand and device support

Type: Memory foam

Key Features:

  • Bendable design supports multiple postures
  • A slightly heavier option weighing in at 1.3 pounds
  • Not ideal for airplanes.

This is a unique offering that features a soft memory foam surrounding a flexible metal. The case on the foam can be detached and washed easily. Unlike other travel neck pillows, this is not suited for flying. It is more suited for the home/ office environment or even on trains. The bulky design can cause some discomfort, especially if you are stuck in an aeroplane seat. Even though multiple positions are advertised, we think that it is effective when used in the normal position, and not as a back or chin brace. A huge plus is the smart stand that holds anything from tablets to books without adversely affecting your neck. The durability of each piece needs a bit of work too.


16. Skyrest Travel Pillow

Type: Inflatable

Key Features:

  • Takes up large amount of space
  • Multi- purpose design
  • Not ideal for people over 183cms
  • Perfect for forward leaning sleepers

Moving on from minimalistic options, to a bulky one, for those who like to trade in some space for that extra bit of comfort. The inflated dimensions are 14” width, 12” depth and 17” at the furthest point. The Skyrest travel pillow is one for the huggers, as well as, a hygienic alternative to the tray table. We touched on the importance of posture earlier, and it might be best to use the Skyrest pillow with a standard pillow tucked onto your lower back area. This keeps your back from moving too much.

This inflatable pillow is a super option for the car or train too. When you are not sleeping you can use it as a book stand whilst you read, without having to strain you neck. The Skyrest is surprisingly portable for its size, once deflated of course. One drawback for us was that you need to use your mouth and blow, to complete the inflation process.

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There is 1 comment

  • Very nice article informative content thanks we liked it.

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