9 Things You Should Never Wear When Flying

These may seem obvious but you’d be amazed at the sort of ridiculous get-up some people throw on to go travelling.  When you’re 35,000 feet up the rules are different and comfort trumps style every time.

Here are my rules to make it plane (lol) sailing.


High Heels

9 Things You Should Never Wear on a Plane


This might seem blindingly obvious but I’ve seen plenty of girls (and even the odd bloke too) tottering along the concourse in THE most laughable footwear: stilettos, platforms, patent leather thigh-high boots – you name it.

Your best bet is a slip-on loafer or lightweight comfy trainer, preferably with no laces for ease of removal at the scanning machines (though careful about odours annoying the passenger in front on you!)

Non-Breathable Fabrics

Fabrics That Don't Breathe


Shun any fabrics that lack breathability, such as nylon or leatherette.  Add your rubber raincoat or waterproof jacket to this list as well (though not high-quality waterproof or ski jackets made of Gore-Tex for example).  Less breathable fabrics hold sweat on the skin as well as prevent air circulation.  You won’t feel very good leaking away in too-tight, synthetic clothes if your plane suffers delays on the hot tarmac.

Tight Clothing

tight clothing

Ever heard of DVT?  Deep vein thrombosis occurs when dangerous blood clots form in veins.  Those blood clots can lead to a pulmonary embolism – not nice.  According to the University of Washington Medical Center, sitting for long periods of time can increase the risk of DVT, as can constrictive clothing.  They warn: “Avoid tight clothing, nylons, or socks (especially the type that are too tight at the top and/or leave marks on your skin) that might restrict blood flow through veins.” Compression socks are a good choice for travellers interested in taking further steps to reduce the likelihood of DVT.

Complicated Clothing


Aircraft lavatories are tiny contrivances, probably the smallest human containers on (or off) the planet.  So manoeuvering in and out of your under- and outerwear can be, well, tricky.  (That’s why someone invented Claspies: neat little idea).

Lest you drop your phone in the toilet or trip and knock yourself out, wear something that isn’t likely to cause difficulties in the loo.  Avoid catsuits and dungarees or complicated wrap shirts or dresses, as well as long trousers or unwieldy skirts that may graze the unsanitary (and often disturbingly wet) surroundings.

Contact Lenses

Contact Lenses


Not something I’d know about, but according to travel gurus at Frommer’s, “The air in plane cabins is so dry (usually 10 percent to 20 percent humidity, sometimes as little as 1 percent, compared to the Sahara desert’s 20 percent to 25 percent humidity) that your health is challenged every time you fly.”

Contacts can become uncomfortable to wear if your eyes lose too much moisture in the arid cabin, so either avoid them altogether or bring a pair of glasses to change into.



Avoid this one for the good of your fellow passengers.  Strong-smelling perfumes, colognes and body sprays really shouldn’t be worn in the confined environment of the aircraft.  Some passengers may simply find your CK One offensive, but others might actually suffer an allergic reactions to synthetic fragrances.

If you really must smell of the finest department-store perfumery counter upon arrival at your destination, pack a sample size and apply it once you land.

Too Warm/Too Cool Clothing


The key here is layers.  It’s fine to wear lightweight fabrics on a plane; it may even be a smart strategy if you’re flying to or from a sweltering climate; but planes are often very cold – and blankets aren’t exactly thick, or even freely distributed on many flights these days.  So fight the air-conditioned chill by layering up.

Getting too warm?  Remove a few layers, bundle them up and use them as a pillow.

Bonus: The more layers you can pile on your body, the fewer items you need to stuff in your suitcase.

Loud Jewellery


It will set off the metal detectors.  It will draw attention to you.  You’ll probably just look daft.  especially if you’re a bloke.  😉

Offensive Or Inappropriate Clothing

Offensive Or Inappropriate Clothing


Carriers typically leave it up to flight attendants to judge whether a passenger’s garb is inappropriate for wear in the air.  So how do you know if your outfit is appropriate?  Learn from history: passengers have been removed from planes for wearing everything from low-cut dresses to baggy pants to T-shirts splashed with expletives or offensive (well, depending on whom you ask) political messages.

Rule is, if you can’t wear it to church or dinner with your mother-in-law, you shouldn’t wear it on a flight.

Read more about airline dress codes in Are Airline Dress Codes Too Extreme?




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s