What is a red eye flight? how to find a red eye flight ? Modern centuries require that people often travel away from homes to places outside their usual environment. With the advent of commercial aviation in the early 19th century, people are obliged to travel in today’s world, be it for business or holiday purposes. Hustling and rushing with the mindless energies of worker bees, human lives have become super busy. Often people are carried along by the momentum moving through commercial flights pumped by the invisible yet omnipresent giant heart, which makes the flights pulsate like no other means of transport in the world. As aviation supports rapid transportation networks worldwide, travelers prefer air transport over other mediums, statistically.
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Having said that, have you ever traveled on a flight with red eyes? Either to escape the hectic check-in lines or at the immigration counter, not to mention the boarding gate, or to reach the intended destination somehow, people opt for a red-eye flight. But what exactly is a red-eye flight? Waking up uncomfortably, with red lines appearing on your eyes and dark circles underneath, why do people still choose red-eye flight? What are the benefits of red eye flight? Are red flights cheaper?
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In general, a red eye flight can be understood as an overnight flight scheduled to take off at night and arrive the next morning at the destination. In other words, it is the flight whose duration is not long enough to allow full night sleep for the passengers. It’s where you fly at the back of the clock, which means you are still flying after midnight. The majority of red eye flights depart late at night after around 9:00 pm and arrive early in the morning, about 5 or 6 am.
In many cases (especially fights to head to Europe), red eye flights may be the only option available. In the USA, (1) the term ‘red eye flight’ indicates West Coast to East Coast flights. Red eye flight denotes the airplane flight, which deprives the passenger of sleep. People usually try to sleep on the flights, and when they get off the plane, if not having a good rest, they end up having red eyes of sleeplessness. The term ‘red eye’ pretty much sums up how you feel when you can’t get to sleep peacefully at the aircraft at such a high elevation.
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An example of a red eye flight can be the flight from LAX taking off at 11 pm and landing at JFK at 7 am. Or it could be the night flight from the Maldives to Singapore with a total flight duration of 4 hours 45 minutes.
The red eye flights are increasingly on the demand spike as airlines are keen towards operating the flights on the night, which allows passengers to beat up the peak hour hefty traffics and save on hotel charges. The number of passengers who use red eye flights has leveled up as they don’t have to compromise heavy traffic reaching an airport and entering the city. The purpose of red-eye flights is to prevent ‘losing the day’ due to changing time zones. In addition, there’s not much traffic on the night as compared to the day. Travelers can reach their home city or hotels before dawn and rest before heading up for work during the day.
But not all airlines and airports provide red eye flights. The airports must be equipped with essential infrastructures to handle such flights.
The body clock of the pilots and cabin crew differs from ordinary people. They are prepared to fly at any hour of the time. So it is not a big surprise if they are using the effervescent approach to light their way back to sanity. Their working hour serves as a dam holding back the reality of the consequences of not having a well-timed sleep.
Now let’s discuss the advantages of red eye flight offered to the passengers. Had there not been perks for grabbing such a flight, people would rarely have compromised giving up their precious sleep or choosing the day flight instead.
Advantages of red eye flight
Avoiding hectic traffic
Often red-eye flights are not fully capacitated, meaning the aircraft fly below capacity. The airport is empty most of the time when you go to check-in: no hassles, no traffic on the way to the airport, no significant waits, no crowd. You can avoid all the anxiety and wait.
Red eye flights Cost-effective
Red eye flights save people money on accommodation since they spend a night on a plane, not a hotel. Fall asleep on the plane and waking up at the destination. Without paying for the hotel, charges seem cost-effective for the travelers.
With few passengers boarding on the aircraft, the passenger will have more overhead bin space, and with fewer pieces of baggage rushing through the baggage carousel, one can claim his\her baggage easily.
Taking a red eye flight will save your travel time as you don’t need to use vacation days. Arriving early in the morning means you get a full day to explore and more time to enjoy the traveling day.
More choice of seats on Red eye flights
Passengers have more options of getting empty seats next to them or getting the seats they want (window, aisle, or emergency exit rows), or the possibility to stretch themselves and take a nap on vacant seats on red eye flights, in case the aircraft is not fully booked.
Red eye flights tend to be on time. Airports are generally less busy at night so that you will have a quicker and more seamless check-in than at the daytime. On the other hand, there is little chance of flight delay, cancellation, or diversion since not all airlines offer flights at night. The late-night flights are usually punctual and arrive and depart at scheduled times.
Another essential perk of red-eye flight is time adjustment, but it also depends on the distance and direction of flight.
Red eye flight is beneficial not only to the passengers but the airlines as well. Airlines are profit-oriented companies which means they try to maximize their earnings through the inventory they possess. Maximum utilization of the aircraft ensures they outsmart the break-even points and run in profit. Less time on the ground means more time on-air, and more air time represents more revenue for airlines. Airplanes do not make money by lying on the grounds. So airlines try to keep their planes in the air on as many flights as possible. As daytime flights are usually booked to their capacity and are regular, night flights give airlines additional revenue. The other benefit is that nights are much quieter and there is less air traffic at night.
Many airlines can save up their costs by flying on the non-peak hours, lessening the airport costs and time by waiting on the queue of busy runways. There will be more flight time and less tarmac time.
Cons of red eye flights
Just as coins have two sides, red eye flights and these advantages have disadvantages too. Passengers traveling on these flights will typically experience fatigue stimulated by the lack of sleep, which will be the reason for the passengers’ eyes to turn redder. The other disadvantages are as follows:
Difficulty falling asleep
There’s a complication trying to sleep on a flight. Even if you manage to sleep well on them – it can be tiring on the body.
Jet lag on Red eye flights
It can take more than a day to get your sleeping roaster regulated if you are crossing many time zones to arrive at your destination.
Resting on a flight is not comfortable than being at home. So most people find it hard to relax their bodies on aircraft. It can be more disastrous if they are on the same flight with kids running off restlessly and causing tantrums.
Lesser flight options
Since not all airlines provide night flights, the number of flights taking off at night is lesser than in the daytime.
Fewer food places
Not all parties for your travel are waking up late to serve. Few places are open to offering food for traveling passengers.
To add up, night flying challenges your natural sleep rhythms and changes your body metabolism.
Given all those pros and cons, it can be concluded that if you don’t mind sacrificing few hours of sleep, then red eye flights can be worth it.
Another question linked with red eye flight is ‘are red eye flights cheaper?’ The answer is yes. Why is it so? It is because of the late-night departure or early morning arrival. Late-night flights are less in demand. This makes red eye flight tickets cheaper than morning or mid-day flights on the same route. Sometimes prices play such significant roles that the fear of getting fatigued and red eyes doesn’t seem to be daunting.
As per the passenger’s convenience, red eye flights can be booked. One can enjoy the perks of red eye flights if they have no objections to getting asleep onboard the flight.