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Do you sleep well the night before a flight, or get keyed up about expected problems?

Do you sleep well the night before a flight, or get keyed up about expected problems?

Oct 5th, 2007, 05:24 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 25
Do you sleep well the night before a flight, or get keyed up about expected problems?

I have traveled to all 50 States and to over 40 foreign countries, but still get nervous before I go on a trip. I am also claustrophobic and afraid to fly on occasion. I also get keyed up before we arrive at the airport about the whole thing. Now a days there are so many things that could go wrong:

Parking lot full, I get sick on the bus to the terminal from motion sickness, long lines to check in, security lines, delayed flight, stuck on tarmac, turbulence, passport problems, taxi driver will not understand my request in a foreign city, terror attack, noisy hotel room, hard uncomfortable mattress at the hotel, my ATM card will not work, flight cancelled. I could go on and on.

Do you worry about your flight/trip the night before as you try to get to sleep?
distant_traveler is offline  
Oct 5th, 2007, 05:36 AM
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I always try to expect the unexpected, and Yes, I do get keyed up about "things."

One night before a flight to Australia, I took melatonin, and that helped me sleep.

Same problem on the plane. I'm all excited about going to Europe, I can't sleep, and unfortunately, that is a night flight. Too bad coming home is not a night flight, the end of a vacation is a bummer, and I could probably sleep then.
wally34949 is offline  
Oct 5th, 2007, 06:52 AM
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You sound like a fun travel partner!! LOL - I'm just kidding.... Several of the people that I work with have the same issues, and we work on an international program and have to travel alot - to places you would never want to go.... Here's what I have told them: First, arrive early at the airport, usually the lines are shorter, and you never get into a panic about missing the flight (how early depends on day of week, time of flight and time of year); Get a ride to the airport if possible - it is just plain worth it to take a cab or a ride so you don't have to deal with parking, and then hauling your luggage around..; for foreign taxi drivers - always have your hotel write out the name of the hotel in the local language, and if you want to go somewhere, have them write that out as well; flight problems - make sure you have long layovers in between connecting flights. If you're flying out of the country, consider arriving in US exit city the day before; Passport problems - make sure your passport is current, with over 6 months left on it (covers you for anywhere in the world) - the rest - you'll have to deal with, it could all happen in your home town... I tend to not sleep the night before I travel because I'm going over what I have to be sure to bring - and if I have a 6:00 am flight, I'm afraid I'll oversleep the 3:00 am alarm, so I end up not sleeping at all.... If you still are as nervous as you sound - go to a doctor and get some medication to relax you - one of my best friends does that (she doesn't travel much at all, and definitely needs a bit of a tranq before she gets on the plane).... I am also claustrophobic - and I always sit in an aisle seat. I saw your post about the single aisle planes being too small, and to be honest - they're just fine. I fly them all the time for very long distances, and if you're sitting on an aisle, it's all good....
Debi is offline  
Oct 5th, 2007, 07:21 AM
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This is another one of distant traveler's "interesting" posts. Click on the name. Beginning to think Distant traveler exists only in someone's creative memory.
fmpden is offline  
Oct 5th, 2007, 03:37 PM
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You mean after packing all night? Or is it before?
FainaAgain is offline  
Oct 5th, 2007, 07:32 PM
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My concern is I'll oversleep if it's an early flight. Makes it impossible for me to get any sleep.
andrews98682 is offline  
Oct 5th, 2007, 09:50 PM
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I have never really had this issue until planning a trip to africa. Its 4 months away but im terrified our flight will be delayed for longer than a day and ill miss seeing the gorillas i have planned. Im scared my camera will break or the electricity wont work in a 3rd world country so i wont be able to charge batteries. Im scared there might be a bomb while in nairobi...Maybe cuz this trip is so expensive and important to me, but i cant help be be really stressed out. Im even on antianxiety meds, but it doesnt help for this stuff!! if im this stressed now, i dont even want to know how im gonna feel the night before!
jenbertoni is offline  
Oct 6th, 2007, 03:18 AM
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I think if I had all those issues, I'd just stay home.
Carrybean is offline  
Oct 6th, 2007, 05:11 AM
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I worry not at all about the trip - I worry about home. Did I stop the newspaper, will the cat feeder show up, will the water heater spring a leak.

I have finally realized that there is little that can not be fixed while on the trip with a passport, credit card and some humor or flexibility.

And who sleeps before trip anyway - I always seem to book 6 AM flights and don't begin to pack until the night before.
gail is offline  
Oct 6th, 2007, 12:55 PM
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Yes I sleep well before a flight and no I don't get keyed up abut expected problems, or unexpected problems for that matter.

I do worry about you though, lol. From all of your posts these last few days I wonder why you even bother to travel.
LoveItaly is offline  
Oct 6th, 2007, 03:31 PM
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Claustrophobia doesn't bother me any more, but with the heavy use of planes and the short turnarounds, I know they don't have time to adequately clean them, and as a result the seats are rife with bacteria and even insects. Further, since the planes fly so high, they are well above the protective atmosphere, and with no shielding built in, they expose us to a high level of radiation, the consequences of which are often delayed. And the lavatories are quite unsanitary.

When I had claustrophobia, I wore reflective sunglasses with the lenses reversed, which made the surroundings look bigger.

I take a large sheet of heavy plastic and wrap it around myself to protect against the bacteria and insects, and I place a double layer of heavy duty aluminum foil, wrapped shiny side up, on my head to protect against the radiation. I carry a plastic urinal I lifted from the hospital so I don't have to visit the filthy lavatories. Its worked so far.
clevelandbrown is offline  
Oct 6th, 2007, 04:11 PM
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I just realized I haven't responded to this thread started by distant_traveler!!! I was missing out on the action!

But let me try to answer this seriously.

For me, it depends on the nature of the trip and who I'm traveling with.

For example, last Christmas, I was flying with my parents to London, then with a airport change and connection to Ryanair to Italy. When I started learning about the "fog problem" BA is having at LHR, I start worrying. But I did not panic.

I thought about alternatives, and got to IAH early, with no checked bags, spend our precious President's Club coupons to get inside the lounge, and have the agent there put us on the very top of the waitlist for the earlier IAH-LGW flight.

Everything worked well, and we had some extra hours in London to walk around town, which was great. I worried about all that and pro-active did something because I know our trip would be ruined if we would miss our Ryanair flight to Italy. Or at least very very messy.


But when I fly to Hong Kong by myself for vacation to see family and friends, I often wish I had problem on the flight. I would welcome a night of stay at Newark, New Jersey if they would offer me a big voucher. And if the plane would have to diver to some exotic place in Northern Canada, Siberia or Mongolia - well, that would only add to my adventure.

I also have little regret in life and no young kids to take care of, so I don't fear death either...

So, there you go. My answer.
rkkwan is offline  
Oct 6th, 2007, 04:50 PM
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No. I don't worry about that stuff. The only thing I ever think about is that I might not wake up in time to get to the airport.

Never missed a flight because of that so I've stopped worrying about that too.

Well, one time I was about half way to Pittsburgh when I realized I was supposed to be going to Cleveland. Still made it.
SamH is offline  
Oct 6th, 2007, 05:03 PM
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clevelandbrown, I think I'd worry about sitting next to you!
Momliz is offline  
Oct 6th, 2007, 05:22 PM
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"I carry a plastic urinal I lifted from the hospital so I don't have to visit the filthy lavatories"

OMG Clevelandbrown, do you really conduct your business right there in your seat??

Never mind, I don't want to know. amp; Let's talk about me instead:

On the outbound I do get keyed up and I barely sleep. I think of everything that could possibly go wrong. But once I get to the airport and get checked in, I'm perfectly OK.

Coming home I don't worry so much. If I get delayed or diverted, then darn the luck, I'll have to phone my boss and tell her I'm stuck in Paris/London,etc for the night. Oh poor me, having to entertain myself in such a place while the airline pays my hotel bill.

rkkwan, if you do not fear death, then why have you vowed never to fly on the same plane as me?? heehee.... ;-)
P_M is online now  
Oct 6th, 2007, 05:36 PM
Join Date: Feb 2004
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P_M: Hm... Good point.

Anyways, you read my post about the IAH tour, right? On a tour that I did not go on, the participants can try to open various emergency doors, and they see a demonstration of a FA going down the slides.

Then they went to a cabin simulator converted from an old 737-100 and they experienced a main gear collapse during landing, and then smoke filled the whole cabin!!!

Next time, I'd try to get on that tour. Do you want to join me?
rkkwan is offline  
Oct 6th, 2007, 05:46 PM
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Ummm, no thanks, been there done that. Let's hope it was a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
P_M is online now  
Oct 9th, 2007, 02:49 AM
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 371
I get keyed up the night before and day of a flight becuase it's normally for a vacation and I can't wait to get there. Zanax really helps with this. My wife & I have had some words before flying because my excitment makes everyone nervous, her words not mine. Did I mention I have adult ADD. For return flights I will set alarm clocks, the cell phone and a wake up call. I don't mind getting to the airport early, less stressfull, and after that I don't worry. If I miss a connection then I get an extended trip!
Pulley is offline  
Oct 9th, 2007, 06:04 AM
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I find sleeping the night before difficult BUT not because i worry about what (might) go wrong. I'm just excited about going on holiday and find it hard to turn off.

I would say stop worrying so much, some of the things that worry you are just life and all its hassles..

Look on travel as an adventure and remember we all have the same worries and irritations its about keeping things in perpective..
AnnRiley is offline  
Oct 9th, 2007, 08:13 AM
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I sleep very little due to excitement, not worry, except that the alarm won't go off. I don't mind staying up and making sure everything is ready and try to save my sleep time for when I get on the plane.
Wednesday is offline  

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