Best travel pillow! A product review.

If you are anything like me finding a good travel pillow is essential. I have been traveling for years and for years I have suffered from pillows that were too firm or didn’t have enough support. I didn’t want to travel with my full sized pillow from home so I had to find an alternative.

The criteria.

It was important that I found a pillow that was not only supportive, yet soft but could also be packed away for easy transport. I am after all a carry-on traveler. It was also important that the pillow was an actual pillow, just maybe a smaller version. Not a neck pillow or a pillow roll. 

The contenders.

I scoured the web for travel pillows that would fit the above criteria and I found three which I’ve tried and would probably recommend depending on how much room you have and what your preferences are. The three I’m reviewing are the Memory Foam cervical pillow from Sooft Bedding, the Hyper-lite air core pillow by Cocoon, and the Camp pillow by Kelty. 

The Hyper-lite air core pillow by Cocoon. 

I purchased this from REI before a trip to Europe two years ago. I bought it because it packs down to nothing! Its designed as an inflatable pillow, you use your own air to blow it up to the desired firmness. The pillowcase is made of silk which lends to an enjoyable sleep experience. This pillow was the most expensive of the 3 coming in at $32.95. 


Here are some of the things I love about this pillow. First and foremost is it’s packability. It packs down to fit in the palm of your hand so you can toss it anywhere in your personal bag or your carry on and it won’t take up any space. As I mentioned earlier the pillow is customizable to your desired firmness which is a bonus and the silk pillowcase has a great feel.

Now for the bad. Mind you some of these are personal preferences and might be a pro for others. Firstly and I think the most annoying thing about this pillow is that you have to inflate it. I don’t like to blow up my pillow, but that’s me. Next, because the pillow is an air bladder it makes a crinkling noise, anytime you move. If you’re a light sleeper, this aspect of the pillow might keep you up. Lastly, if you are someone who tends to run cold this is not the pillow for you. Cold air tends to get trapped in it and I found myself waking up shivering. However, if you’re a warm sleeper this might be the pillow for you. 

Memory Foam cervical pillow from Sooft Bedding

I came across this pillow in my search on Amazon. It’s moderately priced at $23.99. Since it was a memory foam pillow, (an actual pillow!) that packs down I thought I would give it a shot. 


Ok, so I was pleasantly surprised by this pillow. The memory foam cradles your head and neck providing support while still being comfortable. I slept like a baby on this pillow and I woke up in the same exact position as I fell asleep. I woke up rested and revived. The memory foam has breathe holes throughout which allows for a comfortable temperature regulation. 

Now to the bad. The packability isn’t great. Yes, it packs down to about 1/3 the size but 1/3 the size is still the size of a big neck roll. If you were to try to fit it in your carry on or personal bag it would take up too much space, way too much space. However, if you wanted to you could hang it off your bag. 

The Kelty Camp Pillow

Ultimately I settled on the Camp Pillow by Kelty. It retails on Amazon for $15.99. Although it is the least expensive I think it’s the best for what I was looking for. The pillow packs down to the size of a pair of rolled jeans. It doesn’t take up a ton of room. If you’re someone who needs more firmness or loft in their pillow, Kelty incorporated a sleeve into their pillowcase. By adding your jacket or sweater to the sleeve you can give your pillow added firmness. 


For me this pillow provides the right amount of support and softness. It’s the perfect size to use on a plane or virtually anywhere. It is easy to roll up and slip into the accompanying stuff sac. It’s an actual pillow, it doesn’t need to be inflated! 

The bad, for me the only thing I would change is if it could pack down smaller. However, if it was able to do that it might not provide support.

The wrap up.

For me the winner was the Kelty Camp pillow. It’s the most affordable and the most authentic pillow. I love that now I won’t have to fight with my pillow to make it softer or go without a pillow all together.

Which pillow would you choose? Do you have a favorite travel pillow you bring with you on your adventures? Let me know in the comments below. Until next time. 


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