Have you ever been so busy doing last-minute packing for your vacation that you forgot to figure out what to wear on the plane? If you’ve had it with rushing off to the airport in uncomfortable pants and a frumpy top, then you’ll love these easy ideas for how to travel in style. Here’s what to wear to look cute and feel cozy on an airplane.
1. Wear Comfy Pants
When it comes to travel outfits the number one thing to think about is pants. When you’re going to be sitting for hours in a cramped airplane you need to make sure you are wearing soft, comfy pants that are a little bit loose or have some good stretch to them. There’s nothing worse than stiff, tight pants that squeeze your thighs and dig into your crotch as you sit stuffed into a tiny seat.
If you want to wear jeans, then the best kind are the ones with a relaxed boyfriend cut, or if you like skinny jeans be sure they have some spandex in them. When your pants are too tight, and you are sitting for a long time, you run the risk of getting Deep Vein Thrombosis – blood clots in the leg which can lead to sudden death. Compression socks can also help keep the blood flowing and improve circulation.
Another option- casual, loose, silky wide-leg pants in a cute print worn with a stretchy colored t-shirt.
2. Leggings are Ideal for Planes
Leggings are my favorite things to wear, especially on long flights. They’re soft, flexible and you can even buy the kind that wicks away moisture and let your legs breathe. Just be sure they aren’t flimsy, and wear them with a long top, tunic or a short dress that completely covers your bottom and partway down your thighs. It’s only polite in such a crowded space that you cover up a little, and a longer top creates a more flattering look too.
3. Choose a Relaxed Top
A soft, light top is what you need to feel comfy and stress-free. It can be cotton, silky material, or a thin knit. The only thing to stay away from is any top that so crisp it wrinkles because guaranteed it is going to get wrinkled!
I like tops with long sleeves or 3/4 length sleeves because I find airplanes can get very cold. If your body temperature fluctuates between chilly and burning up because of midlife hot flashes, then layering a camisole under a longer sleeved top is a good idea.
4. Never Get on a Plane Without a Scarf, Wrap, Jacket or Cardigan
Hot flashes aren’t the only reason to wear layers when you are traveling on a plane. There are many other conditions that are out of your control which can make you feel overheated, like being delayed for takeoff and having to sit on the runway for an hour! On the flip side, it can be hard to get rid of that deep-seated chill you often feel on a plane when the air conditioning is blasting, and the airline blankets are as thin as toilet paper.
I find a big scarf or a light cashmere wrap essential. I always take one. You can layer it over your top, or use it as a blanket. When you don’t need it, roll it up into a pillow, use it as an eye cover when you sleep, or just toss it into your carry-on. A long cardigan is good too, or even a thin, light jacket works well. A boyfriend jacket is ideal because it is soft, slightly oversized and meant to be rolled up at the sleeves.
5. Ditch Your Heels
The amount of walking you have to do in airports these days is crazy. Can they make the walk from the ticket check-in to baggage drop off, to the customs, then security and finally to the plane any longer? It always feels like a marathon, and I don’t think there’s any sense pretending we can do it in heels anymore. It’s just not worth it to hobble along in pain and wreck your feet. There are too many cute flats, sneakers or low wedges out there these days for that.
6. Closed Toe Slip-ons are Best
Did you know that closed toe shoes are the best kind of shoes to wear on a plane? A flight attendant once told me that in the event of an airline emergency like a fire or crash, closed toe shoes make it easier to escape because they protect your feet from fire and falling debris. No one likes to think about these things, but it’s true!
There are other practical considerations when deciding what shoes to wear traveling. Slip-on flats or sneakers are the easiest to remove when you have to go through airport security. However, you know us gals. Sometimes style trumps practicality. If you’d rather wear sandals than sneakers or ballet flats, be sure to pick sandals that you can easily wiggle your foot in and out of. Bring socks if your feet get cold on the plane.
7. Dark Colors Make it Easier to Travel (for Most)
Dark colors and neutrals are popular for traveling because they don’t show the dirt as much. Airplanes are tight, crowded spaces, and you do have to be careful. Some people find it impossible not to spill stuff or rub up against something that gets their your clothes dirty. Dark colors are helpful if you are traveling with young kids, who often spill drinks on planes or even throw up!
I like to wear neutrals with a pop of color, like a bright top. That’s more my style. Happy colors make me feel like my vacation is already starting. On short flights less than 3 hours, such as to Florida, I will even wear white jeans. I think a lot of the fear factor about white pants is in your head. I don’t find when I’m an on a plane that white gets any dirtier than any other color. But that’s me. If you are worried, stick with darker tones.
8. Take a Bag that Gives You Freedom
There are two ways you can go here. Many women like an efficient cross bag with a long strap that leaves their hands-free for suitcases and carry-ons. I prefer a big lightweight tote.
My kids and husband are always asking me to carry their keys or sunglasses or gum, or whatever, but I have stuff I need to carry too, like my earphones and magazines. I need a lot of space, so I carry a large, lightweight tote that has everything in one spot. That’s much better than carrying my purse, plus a bunch of little small things in small bags.
Finally, I’d suggest you stay away from bags or accessories with hardware such as studs, and chains. They can weigh down a purse – too heavy, and you want to travel light. Also, you don’t want to be swinging them around in a packed plane because the hardware may get scratched, or worse, you could knock someone out!
Have a good flight!
P.S. Flying to Europe? Check out these euro chic looks for the plane.
Tags: What to wear when traveling on a plane, what clothes to wear on a plane, what is a good outfit to wear on a plane
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