Having a good travel pillow is like having good health insurance: you hope you don't have to use it, but you definitely don't want to find yourself without it.

Though in the past they could be a hassle to carry along with you due to their bulkiness, modern travel pillows are in fact lifesavers when trying to avoid the inevitable pain of uncomfortable seating arrangements or trying to catch some shut-eye during a long flight.

Since their inception, travel pillows have progressively improved, aiming to make travelers feel more comfortable during long flights. If you're an avid traveler, you've likely purchased one of the 30 million neck pillows sold each year in the global market. The basic, bulky U-shaped pillow we're all familiar with was once the only option for travelers, but nowadays, we have endless options.

If you're not sure where to start when purchasing the best travel pillow, don't worry. We've done the dirty work for you and highlighted the best pillows for long flights, based on price, reviews and Amazon ratings. These up-and-coming, unique, and distinct designs are guaranteed to offer premium comfort during long flights.

7. Ostrich Pillow

Price: $79.20
Amazon Rating: 3.6/5 stars

Undoubtedly the most uniquely-designed travel item on our list, the original Ostrich Pillow is cocoon-shaped and a revolutionary media sensation. This quirky pillow can be used anywhere, such as at your work desk, lounging on the couch, or, of course, during long flights.

The Ostrich Pillow covers your entire head, with an opening made for breathing, exposing your mouth and nose. This handmade pillow is made from a soft and high-quality combination of viscose and elastomer, stuffed with a microbead filling.

The Ostrich pillow.
Ostrich pillow.

6. Travelrest Ultimate Neck Pillow

Price: $25.95
Amazon Rating: 3.8/5 stars

Another uniquely-designed travel pillow, Travelrest Ultimate Neck Pillow is used as a sling and features an inflatable design with a patented ergonomic shape.

The Travelrest Ultimate Neck pillow can attach to the wings of an airline seat, headrest of a car, or can be worn messenger bag style, nestling against the head and neck. This pillow is great for both in-flight and on-the-road comfort, one of the only products offering full lateral support for the upper body.

Woman in plane seat wearing Travelrest ultimate neck pillow.
Travelrest ultimate neck pillow.

5. Cabeau Evolution Cool & S3 Travel Pillow

Price: $59.99/$39.99
Amazon Rating: 3.9/5 stars

Cabeau brand offers two distinct travel pillows: Evolution Cool and Evolution S3.

The Cabeau Evolution Cool Travel Pillow is both supportive and stylish, with its most innovative feature being its cooling air circulation vents. This memory foam travel pillow has side and back vents covered with a breathable mesh fabric, allowing for continual cooling air circulation.

The Cabeau Evolution S3 Travel Pillow stands out for its head support straps, the only travel pillow on this list with a Seat Strap System (S3) that attaches to the airplane seat wings and effectively prevents your head from falling forwards or sideways.

The Cabeau Evolution Cool travel pillow.
The Cabeau Evolution Cool travel pillow.

4. Trtl Pillow

Price: $29.99
Amazon Rating: 4.2/5 stars

We've written about the Trtl Pillow once before, and that's because its wrap-around support is making travelers ditch their old travel pillows and switch to this new and improved design.

The Trtl Pillow is scientifically proven, half the size of a normal travel pillow, and machine washable. The design features strengthened ribs for better neck and head support, and soft fleece and foam stretched to create a comforting hammock effect.

Woman wearing Trtl pillow
The Trtl Pillow. Wikimedia Commons

3. BCOZZY 360-Degree Pillow

Price: $29.97
Amazon Rating: 4.2/5 stars

BCOZZY is the ultimate chin-supporting travel neck pillow, keeping your head and neck comfortable in any sitting position. Lightweight and adjustable, BCOZZY features a 360-degree design that can be used in many different ways to fit personal comfort.

This particular travel neck pillow has a snap strap that can easily attach to a carry-on or backpack, a flat back that avoids pushing your head forward, and booster side cushions that help to maintain ideal positioning.

BCOZZY 360-Degree pillow.
BCOZZY 360-Degree pillow.

2. SmartDer Inflatable Pillow

Price: $15.98
Amazon Rating: 4.2/5 stars

The SmartDer Inflatable Pillow is a great option for frequent travelers, featuring a face window and armholes that allow travelers to place their heads downwards while comfortably hugging the pillow.

This pillow's unique design provides full support for the upper body, making it easier to fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer. The SmartDer pillow is one of the most affordable options, deemed a "best buy" based on its combined price and Amazon rating. The pillow's inflation nozzle makes it easy to compress and can be easily attached to luggage.

woman on plane burying her face in pillow
SmartDer Inflatable Pillow. Flickr / The Travel Manuel

1. AERIS Memory Foam Travel Neck Pillow

Price: $22.90
Amazon Rating: 4.3/5 stars

Frequently ranked as one of the best travel pillows on the market, AERIS Memory Foam Travel Neck Pillow comes fully equipped with a carrying bag, eye mask and ear plugs.

The AERIS Memory Foam Travel Neck Pillow features adjustable toggles that naturally avoid neck tugging, making for a comfortable and enjoyable long flight. The pillow's supportive memory foam has a patented ventilation design to promote airflow and reduce overheating while sleeping.

The AERIS memory foam travel neck pillow.
The AERIS memory foam travel neck pillow.

If you've got a trans-oceanic flight in your future and you're looking for a pillow to make it more comfortable, we hope we've given you somewhere to start. Happy trails!

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