March 25, 2016 - Austin Grandt
If you are like me, you have a terrible time sleeping on planes. Between the movement of the plane, cramped seating, and thin pillows provided by the airline I almost always find myself getting minimal amounts of sleep when flying. I have tried everything from the standard neck pillow to even bringing my own pillow, but nothing seems to work. A regular pillow is too bulky to carry and neck pillows leave me with a sore neck.
I recently came across a Kickstarter campaign called Woollip, which is an inflatable pillow to help travelers sleep on the road. Specifically, it looks like the optimal use case is on planes, where you can rest the pillow on the tray table in front of you.
Every day, 10 million people are flying domestically or internationally. Among those, less than 5% are business or first class passengers. The rest of us have the choice between a sleepless flight or stiff neck.- Franck, founder of Woollip
I was really interested in seeing how the team took it upon themselves to design a new type of pillow. There are many different types of travel pillows on the market and it seems like everything has been thought of. Personally, I find that the problem with most pillows on the market is that they are bulky to travel with or they don't provide enough support. I think all of us have woken up from a nice nap, only to realize that we can no longer turn our head due to sleeping in an awkward position.
After scouring through the main video and supplemental videos on the page, I began to notice some differences. The key difference I noticed between the Woollip and other pillows is:
I think this is probably the biggest selling point. The pillow itself is big enough that you can put your arms around it and it will hold your entire head on it. Currently, you have to settle for either size or comfort but this seems to be an interesting middle ground.
The way they tackle the size vs comfort dilemma is having the user inflate the pillow once they are on their mode of transport. In the video, they show a woman pulling the pillow out of a very small purse. This is great because you no longer have to strap your neck pillow to your bag and fumble around with it as you walk through the airport or try to walk down the isle of the plane.
Here is a video of inflating the pillow. It seems easy and shouldn't be too awkward to do once you are sitting in your seat.
I also liked that the creators planned for multiple sleeping positions. If you aren't on the window seat, it can be difficult to sleep if you can't sleep by leaning back into your headrest. The Woollip pillow has support for multiple positions, which should help most people find a comfortable position for their liking.
Right now, the Woollip pillow is going for ~$30 on their Kickstarter and prices are only going to increase. Check them out and let me know your thoughts in the comments below!