On Long-Haul Flights, Does Our Crew And Pilot Sleep?

Have you ever noticed that someone from the cabin crew mysteriously disappeared into a cupboard on a long-distance flight? It’s the secret door to the rest areas, where you can catch those forty winks.

Due to the duration of the flights, it is important that the crew members rest during the duration of the flights. In order to get the proper rest, our crew members will typically retire to two designated rest areas on a flight from Australia to Los Angeles.

Due to the advancements in technology, flights have become longer and longer. For some long-distance flights, it can take up to 19 hours to fly.

Most of the time, passengers will need to sleep in order to get enough rest. The cabin crew members, on the other hand, will need to get some rest as well.

Depending on the plane, the rest areas for the crew members can be placed below or behind the passengers. They can also be made into bunk beds or designated areas in the cabin.

On A Flight, Where Does The Crew Sleep?

Although they’re not very glamorous, cabin crew members are very comfortable. They can also enjoy in-flight entertainment. Due to the rise of long flights, airlines have started enforcing rest times.

Large passenger planes can also have special crew rest areas. These areas can be located in areas that would otherwise be unused. For instance, on a Boeing 777, the cabin crew rest area features eight bunk beds.

The bunks are located on the roof of the passenger cabin. This design feature allows the crew members to enjoy a quiet environment while flying across the Pacific.

Two rest areas are located above the Economy and Business Class sections of the Boeing 777-300ER aircraft. They are designed to accommodate the varying needs of the crew members.

For pilots, the two beds above the Business Class section allow them to sleep while still enjoying the in-flight entertainment system. For cabin crew members, the rest area features eight single beds.

They can also change into pyjamas and set an alarm to wake up the rest area’s occupants at the right time. Before going to bed, the crew members hang their clothes outside their bunk to let the other crew members know where they are.

Being able to rest during a flight allows our crew to provide the best possible service to the passengers. This has earned them the title of Best Cabin Crew by various travel publications.


Having a certain amount of seniority allows flight attendants to schedule their schedules so that they can usually sleep at home whenever they need to. If you have long flights with stopovers, then you might want to consider using one of the following options.

During times when flight attendants work long hours, they often get a break of up to three hours. This is very valuable for them as they can sleep well.


For long haul flights, the airlines that you work for will typically cover the cost of a hotel. This is standard procedure in the industry and is also related to the travel expenses that you incur while traveling.

On long-distance flights, flight attendants have their own sleeping areas. Airplanes feature small crew rest areas that are designed to accommodate them. These areas are usually located behind the cockpit and are designed to hide the view of the public.

What Exactly Is A “Crash Pad?”

A crash pad is an unofficial accommodation facility that flight attendants can use to sleep before, during or after a flight. This can be found in various places such as hotels, rentals, and houses.

These are not the responsibility of the airlines. They are up to the flight attendants and pilots to manage. The quality of these facilities can vary depending on the location and price.

For instance, a flight attendant might pay anywhere from $150 to $500 a month for access to a crash pad.

During an interview, flight attendants talked about their experiences staying in basements during bad weather. They also stayed in great hotels.

These facilities can also serve as social and community centers for aviation industry workers. They can also become places where flight attendants can socialize and cook together.

On A Flight, Where Does The Pilot Sleep?

According to Inall, the pilot rest is located at the front of the aircraft and includes two bunks and two seats. For long-haul flights, the crew members of Japan Airlines and Virgin Australia have their own crew rests.

On planes without crew rest areas, a curtain covers the seating area to allow the crew members to eat their meals in peace. While pilots use the back of the cabin, the cabin crew members have a block of seats at the rear that are curtained off.

Although pilots are allowed to sleep during flight, there are strict rules that govern the practice. Most pilots would only sleep on long haul flights.

There are two types of pilot rest: controlled rest, which involves sleeping in the cockpit, and bunk rest, which is usually taken in the passenger cabin.

This practice is commonly followed in order to improve the safety of the flight crew. It ensures that they are well rested for their upcoming approach and landing.

Bunk Rest/ Sleep

While flying long haul, often the pilots and cabin crew sleep in hidden beds. These rooms are usually used to allow them to sleep out of view of the passengers.

Due to the length of the flight and the need for a suitable sleep/rest opportunity, some long haul flights require multiple pilots. These pilots are usually referred to as Heavy crew members.

Bunk beds are usually provided for both the pilots and the cabin crew. If no beds are available, the commercial passenger seats in first class are usually reserved for the rest of the crew.

After the plane takes off, the first pilots go to the bunks to sleep. The rest of the crew members are typically distributed among the pilots 1 hour before landing.

Controlled Rest

One pilot can sleep for up to 45 minutes at a time during low workload periods. This allows them to maintain a higher alertness level during periods of high workload.

The concept of controlled rest is to allow pilots to maintain a higher alertness and energy level. Ideally, this should be between 10 and 20 minutes. During this period, they should avoid falling asleep too quickly, which can leave them feeling groggy.

When taking controlled rest, there are some guidelines to follow, such as:

  • Both pilots should discuss and agree on controlled rest.
  • Controlled rest should be limited to a predetermined timeframe of 10 to 40 minutes.
  • Only one pilot should take controlled rest at a time, and he or she should do so in his or her seat, which should be pushed back away from the controls.
  • Once the sleeping pilot has been awoken, he should refrain from handling the controls for a period of time to ensure that he is completely awake and alert. They should also be awake for at least 15 minutes before engaging in any high-demand activities, such as starting the descent.
  • During a single-pilot operation, the resting pilot should ensure that the operating pilot is sufficiently briefed so that the other pilot can do their tasks.

In order to prevent the non-resting pilot from falling asleep, the cabin crew members are informed about the control rest being taken place.

Some aircraft also have a facility that will alert the crew members if the controls have not been touched for a certain period of time.

Pilot Sleeping Example

Two pilots are operating a flight from Manchester to Tenerife. The flight is scheduled to leave Manchester at 21:00 and arrives at its destination at 01:30.

The turnaround time for the flight is 1 hour, which means the return flight is scheduled to depart at 02:30. The pilots are then required to drive back to Manchester.

The pilots usually sleep on Sunday and would try to go back to sleep in the evening before going to work the following day. This would leave them with only one night of sleep.


Currently, flight attendants are required to spend at least 10 hours between long flights for rest. This doesn’t give them enough time to get to a hotel before going back to work.

Getting used to sleeping in different places helps flight attendants get the rest they need. They also have to be very disciplined when it comes to getting the proper rest.

Being a flight attendant is a lifestyle that’s totally different from most jobs. Aside from being able to commute to work in a jet, you also get to sleep in a small bunk bed while traveling at 35,000 feet.

If you’re thinking of becoming a flight attendant, then these links will help you get started. There are plenty of resources that will teach you everything you need to know.

Like everyone else, flight attendants need to take a break from their duties to recharge. However, unlike other airlines, Boeing has secret rooms that allow them to sleep.

James Newman

James Newman is an air travel fanatic. From the fear of flying, TSA regulations, and saving money on flights & airlines, James has extensive knowledge when it comes to air travel. He hopes to make your air travel experience a better one with his blog flyingcomfortably.com.

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