Timeshifter: An App that won’t let you have Jet Lag
Like to travel, but hate the after-effects? Exhaustion. Insomnia. Stomach issues. Lack of concentration. Lying wide awake in the middle of the night, staring at the ceiling, and feeling like a hangover without drinking? These symptoms can ruin important meetings and the initial few days of vacation. They are effects of jet lag, the disturbance of the body’s quotidian rhythms that occurs to travelers when they travel across multiple time zones.
The good news is that – just like everything else – there is an app to overcome one of the biggest concerns with airline travel, jet lag. Backed by Harvard Medical School’s sleep expert, Steven Lockley, Ph.D., ‘Timeshifter’, also called as the jet lag app uses the circadian neuroscience and research in sleep to help frequent travelers combat jet lag.
The best part? Timeshifter creates a customized plan by adjusting the sleep and wake schedule for each user and trip one plans to take. If you sign up for Timeshifter, the app will communicate the following: to avoid light, the right time to look at a bright light to help you get accustomed, and when to take a nap or stay awake. By entering personalized data such as flight plan, sleep patterns, and chronotype, Timeshifter integrates an authentic “practical” feature to endorse instantaneous results. You can even take it a step ahead by activating optional features like pre-travel adjustment or inclusion of melatonin.
How does Timeshifter work?
The app first starts by asking you a few basic demographic details, like your age, chronotype – which means, whether you’re an early bird or a night owl. Once these details are recorded, you’ll need to fill in some information about your trip: Destination you’ll be traveling to, places you’ll be traveling between; number of halts you’ll be taking (if any), whether it is a one way or round-trip; and most importantly, your departure and arrival time and date. With the help of these details, you’ll be offered a timetable consisting of tailored schedule to follow not just the day you’ll depart or be in transit, but the other days surrounding it as well.
The algorithm behind Timeshifter is already benefiting top CEOs, entrepreneurs, elite athletes, and astronauts. The reason Timeshifter is being widely used world over is because it not only offers advice to ease the unsettling symptoms of jet lag like drowsiness and insomnia but discourses the primary circadian disruption by swiftly resynchronizing the “internal clock” to the new time zone, eliminating the effects of jet lag on the brain and body functions.
Timeshifter, which boasts a 4.8-star rating on the app store involves options of different in-app purchases such as annual plans and individual jet lag plans. Additionally, this app isn’t free. It can be downloaded for free; in fact, the first jet lag plan can also be developed for free; but post that, you either need to purchase individual jet lag plans as you travel, or opt for a yearly subscription that gives you access to different plans on the platform. The cost per jet lag plan on Timeshifter is $10 and $24.99 for an annual subscription. These prices aren’t exactly economical, but if you travel a lot and switch time zones frequently, then the offers on Timeshifter might be worth it. Timeshifter can be downloaded from Google Play or the App Store.
Who is Timeshifter useful for?
Everyone can benefit from Timeshifter – be it jet lag sufferers or frequent travelers. You might think Timeshifter would be helpful for flight attendants and pilots. Unfortunately, due to regulations on time off-duty and sleep, and the unpredictability of their schedules, the app may not prove to be of much use to them.
For those who feel that the app is only for long-distance flights, because of its quick turnaround feature, it provides great support for short-distance trips as well. Other methods to combat jet lag exists, but none provide a customized plan on your smartphone like Timeshifter. It’s safe to say, Timeshifter is slowing becoming or will become an important part of the future of travel, possibly, in the coming times we can all look forward to saying goodbye (!) to restlessness, drowsiness, fatigue, and stress.
Akanksha Shukla is a content strategist, writer by the day and reader by the night- all with the trusted companionship of coffee!