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The Airplane Outfit: What to Wear on Long Haul Flights

This blog post was updated on October 25, 2018.

It can be a well-orchestrated move or one of haste and hurry. The airplane outfit is either the last item that we consider when packing for a long haul flight or something the traveler has down to a uniform. I have had my share of triumphs and pitfalls with the airplane outfit, but I have finally found my uniform that works for those hours on end on the airplane. With summer on the horizon, many of us are heading to far away lands for vacation. Those adventures require a long plane ride first and foremost. What you wear can largely dictate your comfort and patience levels to get through 10 plus hours. If you usually decide what to wear at the last minute, here is a simple guide to follow to compose the best airplane outfit.

Pay attention to your fabrics: That black shirt might seem like a good idea, concealing whatever grim befalls you on the flight, but it might be composed of a fabric that isn’t ideal for the airplane. Before I even start throwing down pant and shirt combinations for a long haul flight, I have to consider the fabric. A jersey or something with a bit of stretch that won’t stretch out is always a safe option as opposed to some other fabrics that don’t have any give to them. It is also important to consider the fabric from a wrinkle standpoint. No one wants to arrive looking like they just came out of a packed suitcase. Your fabrics for a long haul flight shouldn’t be prone to wrinkles.

Avoid jeans: Unless you have found the most comfortable pair of jeans, a long haul flight is usually not kind to jeans. After a few hours of sitting like a caged animal, jeans only get more and more uncomfortable. It is best to go with pants that are stretchy and giving. A knit pant can be a better solution to jeans. They still look the part of being put together once you touch down, but they lend the comfort of pajama pants.

Stick to shirts that fit loosely on the body:
If you have ever sat through a long haul flight with a shirt fitting tightly across the body, you know just how uncomfortable and constricting this can be. It is best to stick to shirts that fit loosely on the body. You shouldn’t notice the shirt when you sit down. Your airplane shirt should not require frequent pulling to keep in place.

Slip on socks and slippers: On long haul flights, I always bring a pair of fresh socks and slippers that could be confused for shoes. Long haul flight call for footwear that very well could function in everyday life. However, these additions to your feet don’t have to be uncomfortable like everyday footwear. A loafer type shoe makes it easy to slip on and off to get up and move around the plane. A nice pair of socks will keep your feet warm and off the dirty airplane ground when you are seated.

Pack a cozy sweater and scarf: Even if you are headed to a warm weather destination, you need to plan accordingly for the flight. I usually pack a cozy sweater or sweatshirt for every long haul flight, even in the dead of summer. If you don’t want the bulk in your bag, a large scarf can function as a blanket when you get cold on the flight.

What’s your go-to outfit for long haul flights?


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