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Travel Pillows

My question of the week! And yes I've already checked the forum for this topic with no updated comments.

Looking for recommendations for an inflatable or memory foam travel pillow. One that will deflate small enough to stuff in pack. I do not want to hang on the outside of my pack. We are only carrying 40L packs.

Your thoughts/recommendations are welcomed!

Posted by
479 posts

I actually use a small down pillow. I take it out of the case, and then it just compresses into the top of my carry-on. Its handy as well if you end up in a hotel with enormous pillows. We have two of these, use them all the time, still excellent. For us were worth the extra dollars.
https://www.stgeneve.com/product-page/travel-pillow

Posted by
8434 posts

I've given up looking for a good one. I consider them to be disposable now.

Posted by
6288 posts

Here's one from 8 months ago that has some relevant links you can start on - I'm sure there will be others. I myself gave up on pillows - they don't help me and I'd rather just use a sweater or jacket. https://community.ricksteves.com/travel-forum/packing/travel-pillow-advice

I've given up looking for a good one. I consider them to be disposable now.

Ha, Stan, so true! I tried one of those banana-shaped pillows that are supposed to work. It didn't and I left it draped on my seat when i left the airplane.

Posted by
73 posts

I received this one for Christmas but I have not tried it out for a trip as yet. My requirements were (1) light, preferably inflatable (2) removable & washable cover (3) back has to be narrow (4) have a tie or buttons in front.

I have used this for the last 4-5 years (I do a lot of trans-Atlantic and trans-Pacific flying) and while it is good for sleeping, I don't like how bulky it is, even in a cinch sack.

Posted by
8135 posts

I've got a Rick Steves inflatable pillow for the flights. I've used it for years and years.

Posted by
237 posts

I got a TRTL "pillow" on Amazon before Xmas and planned on trying it out when I flew home for the holidays.

Ended up not taking it because I filled up my tote bag with extras because of the cold and couldn't fit it in. Wanted room to put my jacket in the tote once in the airport. I also usually put whatever I'm using as a purse in the tote.

I have tried it out on the couch. Seems okay if you get the positioning right and it's tight enough. I have a short neck. Seems like it might get a little warm in the summer or on a warm flight. It has a removable, washable fleece cover and fastens around your neck with velcro.

I've used an inflatable before. It loses pressure once in the air. I don't like having to inflate it in flight. And with COVID still around, I wasn't going to remove my mask in flight anyway.

Flights weren't that long and I had a book to read.

Posted by
3961 posts

I have purchased a couple of travel pillows that have multiple purposes: Air travel, road trips, camping and backpacking. They come in beautiful designs and are made with full 9 ounces of shredded memory foam for comfort. They are not inflatable, but can be easily be cinched to create a smaller profile and firmer pillow. They weigh under 12 ounces. They are very well made and are machine washable. They also make a wonderful gift due to the many designs. https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=&ved=2ahUKEwib0uqfsuH8AhXUGDQIHVzPD24QFnoECBEQAQ&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.etsy.com%2Fshop%2Fcampincomfort&usg=AOvVaw2a-1lGEeDYwRvZEwSVVYjF
Edited to add: The designer does custom orders as well.

Posted by
10214 posts

Many years ago we got the Rick Steves inflatable pillows and didn’t like them at all. Since then we have bought other types that make one trip and we find we don’t like them and try another. A couple of years ago we were in Edmonds and went to the Rick Steves Europe headquarters, where they have every item they sell on display. We were able to see and touch the new (to us) inflatable pillow and decided to give them a try. We went to Europe twice last year and we were happy to have them.

https://store.ricksteves.com/shop/p/travel-pillow

Posted by
3107 posts

If you are flying KLM Economy, be sure to bring either a pillow or a squashy jacket to use as one.
They don't have pillows anymore.

Posted by
1 posts

I've also just about given up. I liked the Bucky inflatable, but the vinyl developed tears. Would love to have a pillow on the plane (good to know about no pillows on KLM economy, BTW) I've heard some folks use a Thermarest camp pillow. It's very lightweight, but still rather bulky when compressed. The guarantee on Rick Steves' products is reassuring and his inflatable pillow looks good, but alas is currently out of stock. OP, keep us posted.

Posted by
471 posts

We don't take pillow anymore. It's just one more thing to schlep around. If it works for you, go for it.

Posted by
26 posts

I haven’t found any travel pillow to work for me. I can’t seem to get the inflatable ones to the right firmness and I don’t want one clipped to the outside of my bag, getting dirty. Consequently, I haven’t bothered with one for a while.

I did read of a packing hack that uses the zippered cover of a travel pillow stuffed with clothes. I actually can fit a knee length down coat in my Bucky cover! It’s quite stuffed, but if I decide I need the coat on our next trip, I might use the Bucky cover as a “stuff sack” for my coat and use it as a pillow if I have room in my back pack.

Posted by
3961 posts

I recall reading years ago that the RS Civita Bag can substitute as a pillow. It can be stuffed with a jacket, etc. The bag is microfiber, washable and lightweight.

Posted by
14 posts

For years, I've been using a previous version (without strap; newer version has a strap) of the Sea to Summit Aeros Premium Traveller Pillow: https://seatosummit.com/products/aeros-premium-traveller-pillow. I've taken it on multiple flights. It's comfortable enough; easy to inflate, deflate and adjust the amount of air in it; and packs down very small. (I see they have an even smaller Ultralight version, with strap, that I might have to try as well.)