Full size pillow or travel pillow on airplane

Can You Bring a Pillow on a Plane? [2024] 🛫 Updated

Long flights with comfort, hard to imagine without travel pillow.
Can you take your pillow on a flight?
You can bring pillows on an airplane as a personal item, as long as they are in a range of allowed sizes. But there are some special cases where the pillow policies are different. We have the latest pillow policies for popular airlines. We also have some quick tips for you about bringing pillows on your flight.

Can You Bring a Pillow on a Plane for Free?

You definitely can bring a pillow on a plane for free, as long as it adheres to the airline’s guidelines and size restrictions. Most airlines allow pillows that can fit in your carry-on or personal item, without additional fees. However, it’s important to note that bringing a full-size bed pillow may require checked baggage, which may incur additional fees.

Types of Pillows Allowed On The Plane

which Pillows you can bring On The PlaneTravel neck pillows are always allowed on airplanes since they do not take up much space and count as carry on. Standard bed full size pillows are allowed on some airplanes, but they either need to fit under your seat or be stowed in your carry-on bag. Inflatable pillows that can fold down small while deflated could also potentially be brought on board as long as they meet airline restrictions when packed.

Can I Bring a Neck Travel Pillow On The Plane?

Most airlines consider a neck pillow to be a personal item, along with a purse, briefcase, laptop bag, or small backpack that can fit under the seat in front of you. You can typically bring one personal item in addition to your carry-on luggage that fits in the overhead compartment. However, airline policies can vary, so it’s best to check with your specific airline to confirm their guidelines. 

Can I Bring a Full Size Pillow On The Plane?

Bed Pillow On Plane Full-sized pillows are generally permitted on planes, either in checked bags or as carry-on items. However, if packing a full-sized pillow in your carry-on luggage, you need to ensure it follows the airline’s size and weight restrictions. Airlines differ on whether they count pillows toward your carry-on allowance or if they can be brought as a personal item. Small, travel-sized pillows usually do not have any restrictions and can fit under airplane seats as a personal item. But larger, full size pillows are often treated as a carry-on by airlines. Before flying, always check with your airline to understand their specific policies, fees, and size limits for bringing any pillows on board to avoid extra headache. The easiest option is to pack pillows in checked luggage to avoid carry-on restrictions. And having a smaller, compressible pillow can make getting through airport security and fitting it inside the airplane cabin much simpler.

Does a Neck Pillow Count as a Personal Item?

In most cases, small travel-sized or inflatable pillows can be brought onboard as part of your free carry-on allowance. However, full-sized bed pillows often exceed airline carry-on size and weight limits. You’ll need to check if your pillow meets the specific restrictions of your airline to avoid problems. If your pillow is too big, pack it in your checked baggage or a carry-on bag rather than carrying it separately. While the TSA allows pillows through security as they don’t pose a threat, the airlines determine if you can actually bring it onboard. To maximize comfort on your flight, consider investing in one of the best travel pillows that packs down small so you can use your own pillow without hassle. To travel smoothly with your own pillow, it is the best to check airline policies on what counts as a personal item or carry-on.

How To Pack  Your Pillow For Flight?

How To Pack Pillow Before Flight

Start by ensuring your pillow is clean and completely dry. If it’s machine washable, wash it and let it air dry before packing. Then, fold or roll the pillow tightly to reduce bulk and fit it conveniently in your luggage. Consider using a compression bag, bands, or a tight wrap to keep the rolled pillow compact and secure during travel. It’s also wise to place the packed travel pillow in a separate protective case or bag to shield it from dirt and germs.

For ultimate portability, use a travel pillow case with a handle or strap so you can easily attach it to luggage and keep your hands free during transport. Inflatable travel pillows should be fully deflated, then rolled or folded into their storage pouch or bag. Neck pillows often have removable supports to flatten for packing efficiency. No matter the pillow type, utilizing folding and rolling techniques can significantly minimize size and bulkiness.

Proper travel pillow packing not only maximizes luggage space, but also provides padding protection for other packed belongings when moving. Use enough soft pillows and blankets to safely cushion fragile items in boxes and suitcases. With some advanced preparation, you can make travel – whether a simple overnight or a cross-country move – more restful, convenient and stress-free.

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Are Plane Pillows and Blankets Clean?

Airline policies on reused blankets, pillows, and other linens vary widely. Some airlines, like Southwest, reuse items like blankets after re-folding them, only supplying fresh blankets on an aircraft’s first flight of the day. Others, like Nippon Airways, remove all used linens after each flight to be commercially washed, sealed in plastic bags, and supplied fresh on the next flight. American Airlines states that every blanket is washed and re-wrapped before being given to a new customer. So policies range from reuse with limited washing, to washing and sealing between each use, to guaranteed washing before each reuse. Ultimately, how airline blankets and pillows sanitized depend on each airline has its own procedures regarding providing fresh vs reused pillows, blankets and other linens. It’s similar as how are hotels sanitizing pillows, but since there are people flow going, the rules of leaning pillows is different. While some airlines refresh these items after each flight, others choose to reuse inventory in order to save costs, which may leave some passengers uneasy about the cleanliness of the items they are provided.

Can You Take a Pillow Home From a Flight?

Take Pillow From PlaneJust like with blankets, pillows offered during your flight are for in-flight comfort, not freebies to take home. Those items are not yours to keep after the flight. Taking blankets and pillows can considered as theft. As a general rule, you can keep the blankets unless a flight attendant tells you otherwise, with either a spoken or written notice. Airline blankets in particular get gathered at the flight’s end. You can’t take pillows from flight, even in business class (unlike pajamas, which are gifted to passengers). Some airlines, especially U.S. carriers, will allow you to purchase blankets if desired.

Policies By Airline

Planning a flight requires considering the pillow policies of different airlines. Some provide free pillows, while others charge or don’t give any. Delta Air Lines gives complimentary pillows and blankets on most international flights, American Airlines charges $5 for a set in economy class. United Airlines offers no pillows on domestic flights but provides them on international ones. Passengers can plan ahead and bring their own pillow by researching these policies beforehand.

AirlinePillow Policy
RyanairPassengers are allowed to bring a travel pillow on board. Strict carry-on allowances for basic fare ticket holders, limiting them to a backpack or small bag under the seat. Some passengers have used a travel hack by filling their pillowcases with extra clothes. No official response from Ryanair about this trick.
Wizz AirAllows passengers to bring a pillow or blanket in addition to their permitted carry-on bag. The carry-on bag must meet size and weight restrictions (40 x 30 x 20cm, 10kg). Oversize bag fee (approx. 25 euros) if the carry-on bag exceeds limits at the gate. The pillow/blanket does not count as the one carry-on, providing additional comfort without violating carry-on limitations.
United AirlinesPermits passengers to bring pillows, including full-size pillows, as one of their standard carry-on items. Flight attendants may ask to store large pillows during take-off or landing for safety reasons. No issues bringing pillows in either carry-on or personal bag, making tight airplane quarters more hospitable.
LufthansaNo restrictions on travel pillows. Passengers can bring pillows, including full-size pillows, on board flights. Oversized pillows must fit into the maximum allowed size and count toward the carry-on allowance. Typically, passengers are allowed one personal item (purse or backpack) and one standard carry-on bag. Consider that bringing large pillows may take up space that could be used for other carry-on items.
Turkish AirlinesPermits travelers to carry their own pillow onto the airplane. Additionally, Turkish Airlines provides pillows for passengers to use on some flights. Extra pillows are available on specific routes, and passengers can ask flight attendants for one to enhance comfort during the flight.
Note: It’s always advisable to check with the respective airlines for the most up-to-date information on their policies, as they may be subject to change.

Ryanair Pillow Policy

The Ryanair pillow policy allows passengers to bring a travel pillow on board. The airline’s strict carry-on allowances require basic fare ticket holders to only bring a backpack or small bag that must fit underneath the seat. While the policy permits pillows, some passengers have used a travel hack by filling their pillowcases with extra clothes to bring more items on board without incurring extra baggage fees. However, Ryanair has been made aware of this trick and has not officially responded with a rule about it

Wizz Air Pillow Policy

Wizz Air allows passengers to bring a pillow or blanket with them in addition to their permitted carry-on bag. The carry-on bag itself must meet Wizz Air’s size and weight restrictions – it cannot exceed 40 x 30 x 20cm in dimensions and 10kg in weight in order to fit underneath the seat. If a carry-on bag is found to exceed these limits at the gate, an oversize bag fee of approximately 25 euros will be charged. So passengers can bring a pillow or blanket on top of their one permitted carry-on bag that follows the size and weight rules. The pillow/blanket does not count as the one carry-on. This allows passengers some additional comfort with a pillow or blanket without exceeding the strict carry-on limitations.

United Airlines Pillow Policy

According to United Airlines’ policy, passengers are permitted to bring pillows,  full-size pillows as well as long as they fit to dimension criterias , on flights as one of their standard carry-on items. Just be aware that flight attendants may ask to store large pillows during take-off or landing for safety reasons. But overall, there should be no issues bringing pillows in either your carry-on or personal bag. They can make the tight airplane quarters more hospitable.

Lufthansa Pillow Policy

Lufthansa has no restrictions on travel pillows, passengers are permitted to bring pillows, including full-size pillows, onboard flights, exception is oversized pillows must be fit into maximum allowed size. These pillows would be counted toward the passenger’s carry-on allowance, of which passengers are typically allowed one personal item such as a purse or backpack and one standard carry-on bag. Just be mindful that it may take up space you could otherwise use for other carry-on items.

Turkish Airlines Pillow Policy

Turkish Airlines permits travelers to carry their own pillow onto the airplane when they fly. 

In addition to letting passengers bring their own pillow, Turkish Airlines also has pillows available for passengers to use during some flights. On certain routes that the airline flies to specific destinations, Turkish Airlines keeps extra pillows on the aircraft. If you are taking one of these flights, you can ask a flight attendant for a pillow from Turkish Airlines to make your flight more comfortable.

Can You Hide Clothes in Pillows to Avoid Fees?

There is some warning that carrying a large, burdensome pillow through multiple airports for connecting flights could become annoying and difficult. A creative alternative suggestion is packing small essential items inside a travel pillow instead of bringing a full-sized pillow. Overall, passengers should check their specific airline’s baggage allowances to ensure bringing a pillow aligns with permitted carry-on dimensions and items. Thinking pragmatically about the pillow’s potential weight and awkwardness through airports can prevent frustration mid-travel. The key is balancing innovative packing ideas with following each airline’s individual rules.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Can you bring a pillow pet?

Pillow pets can be brought on a plane, however, they are likely to take up more space than a travel pillow. For this reason, ensure that they can be stashed under the seat before boarding to avoid any extra baggage costs. If you don’t mind placing your pillow pet in a suitcase, that is an option. But if you want them to see everything going on during the flight, be prepared to carry them, or, depending on their size, you may be able to place them in a small carry-on suitcase or backpack. Just keep in mind that pillow pets tend to be bulkier than a typical travel pillow, so make sure you have room for them and any potential extra baggage fees before packing them in your carry-on.

Can you bring a blanket?

You can bring a blanket on a plane, as airlines generally allow blankets on flights. In fact, some airlines provide blankets for passengers on long flights. However, you can also bring your own travel-sized blanket for additional comfort and hygiene reasons. It’s always a good idea to check with your airline for any specific restrictions or guidelines regarding blankets.

Can you bring a nursing pillow?

Nursing pillow usually has no restrictions on a plane, as long as it meets the airline’s guidelines. However, it is recommended to check with your airline’s specific guidelines before traveling, as rules can vary. You may be required to place the nursing pillow in a separate bin during security screening. Bringing a nursing pillow can make traveling with an infant more comfortable for both you and your baby.

Are airline pillows clean and worth using?

Airline pillows are often reused and not cleaned after each use, so they may not be the most hygienic option. Some airlines offer pillows wrapped in plastic for increased sanitation, but you can’t guarantee their cleanliness. Bringing your own travel pillow is a more comfortable and potentially cleaner option, allowing you to have a comfortable flight without worrying about hygiene concerns. Consider purchasing a compact travel pillow that can easily fit in your carry-on bag.

Can you bring a seat cushion?

Cushion on a plane is allowed on most of airlines, as long as it fits within the airline’s carry-on luggage size restrictions. Some airlines may also have restrictions on the type of material the cushion is made of, so it’s best to check with your airline before bringing a seat cushion on board. Bringing a seat cushion can make your flight more comfortable, especially on long flights where you’ll be sitting for extended periods.

Conclusion

In most cases, bringing a pillow on an airplane is permitted, but policies differ between airlines. It’s best to check with your specific airline prior to traveling to ensure compliance with their guidelines. Certain types of pillows, like travel or neck pillows, are typically allowed but may have restrictions. If permitted, packing the pillow properly in your carry-on baggage or personal item is advised. While some carriers provide pillows and blankets, their cleanliness may be concerning, so bring your own for comfort if desired and space allows. Additionally, stowing clothes inside a pillowcase can conveniently avoid extra baggage costs. In summary, bringing your own pillow onboard is very often allowed and can enhance comfort, as long as you verify policies, have adequate space, and don’t mind transporting it.

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