Inside the secret plane bedrooms where pilots sleep on long-haul flights

Passengers aren't the only ones who sleep on long-haul flights. Flight attendants and pilots need their rest as well — but you won't catch them snoozing in economy class.

Chloe Pantazi
Friday 24 March 2017 18:24 GMT

The INSIDER Summary:

Pilots have resting cabins where they can sleep on long-haul flights.

The cabins are usually located behind the cockpit and above first class.

The small sleeping area typically contains a lie-flat bed, reclining seats, and sometimes a TV and bathroom.

Passengers aren't the only ones who sleep on long-haul flights. Flight attendants and pilots need their rest as well — but you won't catch them snoozing in economy class.

While flight attendants sleep on bunk beds in tiny crew rest areas, pilots get their own separate sleeping compartments, where they can spend up to half of their time on a long flight.

Most fliers are completely unaware of these hidden sleeping quarters. Here's what they look like.

On most planes, the pilot's resting area can be found above first class and tucked behind the cockpit, as it is on this Boeing 777.


Pilots can access their sleeping quarters either by climbing hidden stairs or a ladder, like this one.

(Mal Muir/AirlineReporter)

Here's where they get to rest on Boeing 777s. Though the room's a little cramped, it contains two business class seats and lie-flat beds.



The sleeping berths look wide and comfortable enough, and there are curtains to help drown out the sound of the plane. There's also a phone in the room in case the resting pilot is needed

(David Parker Brown/Airline Reporter

Some pilot's quarters come with a sink or bathroom, similar to this crew bathroom on a Lufthansa Airbus A380. Essentially, it looks the same as any economy class bathroom but it's probably cleaner and there's less wait time.

(David Parker Brown/Airline Reporter

This pilot's resting area on an American Airlines 777 has a TV. The screen is definitely larger than the ones economy passengers are used to.

(David Parker Brown/Airline Reporter

On this Air New Zealand 777, the pilot's compartment is designed in the standard layout, with two reclinable seats and beds at the back.

(David Parker Brown/Airline Reporter

But the room's design differs depending on the plane and airline. This rest area on a Lufthansa Airbus A380 isn't quite as spacious as the Boeing model.

(David Parker Brown/Airline Reporter)

Pilots on this Condor Airlines 767 have far less privacy. They sleep in a compartment in business class. At the very least, there's a curtain.

(David Parker Brown/Airline Reporter)

Those flying a LAN Boeing 787 won't get to recline their chair in this seating area.

(David Parker Brown/AirlineReporter)


Singapore Airlines adds a touch of luxury to the pilot's modest dwellings, providing satin pillows in the rest area on its Airbus A380 planes.

(David Parker Brown/Airline Reporter)

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