Taking an overnight flight to Europe never seems like a bad idea. Yeah, the sleeping conditions are miserable, but at least you get something. When you hit the ground, both you and the day are getting started. Though not ideal, it works pretty well.
If Iceland is on your itinerary, forget everything you know about traveling to Europe. We took off from Boston (after shuttle from New York) at around 9:30pm, and the flight to Reykjavik is only 4 1/2 hours. Yet, there is a four-hour time difference. So, it felt like 2am when we hit the ground, even though it was 6am. It took close to an hour to get to the hotel– after customs, baggage claim and waiting for the bus (fyi: I love Reykjavik Excursions)– which meant we were checked in and ready to go at 8:30am. This is roughly when I would be on the ground and checked in if I were in Paris. But, Paris offers a flight of at least six hours; you actually get some sleep. En route to Reykjavik, you’re lucky to get four hours of sleep, and that’s assuming you’re conked out from climb to descent.
My first day in Iceland has been an absolute blast. But, if you are kicking around this sort of trip, know that you will be tired your first day.