Flying can be a good experience or a terrible one. If you prepare well in advance and are comfortable, you might find that the plane isn’t as bad as you expect, even on long flights. This month will see me on a 10-hour flight from Portland to London, and then a return flight a bit longer a few weeks later. It’s not my first long-haul flight and won’t be my last, so I make it the best I possibly can by first starting with my travel outfit.
I always want to be comfortable. That’s my number one priority, but I also want to look decent. I’m sorry, but I shame people who wear pajamas or straight-up athleticwear on the plane. I live in Columbia Sportswear country here in the Pacific Northwest, and while a lot of their clothing looks like you’re going out hiking in the woods, more and more of their clothes are versatile and give you the feel of outdoor clothing, with the look of normal casual pieces.
I’m one of those people who never leave without a bra on. I also wear lightweight, and often, then shirts when I travel, so I don’t want to risk people seeing things I don’t want them to see. Usually, I wear a regular bra when I travel, but they can be super restrictive, especially when you’re trying to get some sleep in a confining space. A sports bra gives me support, coverage, and I don’t feel like I’m being strangled. I know a lot of ladies have already figured out this method of comfy travel and I’m jumping on board. There are a million different ones out there, plus they can do double duty if you’re one of those people who enjoy an exercise routine when you travel.
Short sleeve shirt
I pick a breathable fabric for a shirt on a long flight. You don’t want to find that the shirt you’re wearing is making you sweat and also holding odors. I usually choose a lightweight, loose, moisture-wicking shirt, like this one from Columbia. It gives me good coverage and is long enough to not ride up, plus it doesn’t wrinkle, so I’ll be looking put together when I arrive in London, and then Edinburgh.
The first rule of travel is being comfortable. The second rule of travel is to layer. You want to be comfortable whether it’s hot, cold, or somewhere in between. I like to be able to take something off if I’m too warm, or put something on if I need to keep the chill out. A good cardigan, that goes with all your clothes, is a must. It’s a nice addition to your airplane outfit and it’s great to have at your destination, whether you want to bum around your room, or you need that extra layer while you’re out.
Loose pants or pants with stretch
I don’t travel with yoga pants or leggings. I don’t like the look of them and I don’t feel like drew take you seriously if you’re looking for an upgrade. I often travel in stretchy jeans or jeggings, which are very comfortable and don’t cut off my circulation, but I have since found a great pair of Columbia pants that are a hybrid of travel pants and leggings. They are stretchy, comfortable, can be worn in a business setting or a nice dinner if needed. They’re moisture-wicking and also have pockets.
They are similar to the ones above, but I purchased them in black, so they’re more versatile than pants in colors, and look professional when they need to, but they also don’t show dirt or stains if I drop food in my lap. They’re perfect for the plane, and then can be rotated into my travel wardrobe when I get to my destination.
Your heaviest shoes
When you’re trying to pack light, I always suggest wearing your bulkiest shoes on the plane. Not only does it save space in your carry-on, but if they plane is cold, they will also keep your feet warm. If they are too bulk, though, I am a fan of taking off your shoes for a flight (but don’t just rock out with bare feet, because that’s gross!). You don’t want your tight shoes creating problems for you, like making your feet and ankles swell, especially if you’re short like I am and your feet don’t really touch the floor.
Slippers or slipper socks
As someone who likes to get comfy on a flight, I like to take off my shoes and settle in. As a person who also has bad circulation in my hands and feet, my feet get cold very easily. I have some great short slippers that can give me freedom and also keep my feet warm, plus I won’t be squicked out if I put my feet on the dirty plane carpet.
I once went on a long flight and wore boots, thinking they were lightweight and would be fine, but my lower legs swelled and I was never able to get them back on my entire trip, so I’m glad I had other shoes. If I had been wearing compression socks, I wouldn’t have had that problem. Sometimes the plane is hot, sometimes the plane is cold, so I don’t want to have to wear too many layers that can’t be removed. I often pack compression socks and wear compression sleeves on the plane. It helps the blood flow in your legs and keeps your lower legs happy.
You never know when you’ll need that extra layer of warmth and you don’t want to pull out your big coat. I have this great Happyluxe wrap that I always travel with. It can be worn as a scarf, unfolded into a blanket (I often use it as a lap blanket in my room), or a wrap. It’s one of my favorite things to have in my carry-on. You can even throw it over your head if your seatmate has their fan on full blast and you don’t want it blowing directly into your eye for 10 hours. I love it, and many times will wrap it around my purse strap and take it with me on days out.
So, now you know exactly what you’ll be seeing me wear in travel pictures on my airplane days. What do you like to wear on the plane to be comfortable?
Disclaimer: this post contains affiliate links that may result in monetary compensation for me if you make a purchase through them. This helps me keep this blog running, so I thank you in advance.