What to Wear on a Plane: 7 Tips To Stay Comfortable and Stylish

by | Last updated Dec 10, 2022 | Beauty, Fitness & Health, Gear, Luggage + Packing, Transport / Travelling

Air travel is often a mix of different climates. From a warmish terminal, to a hot tarmac, to an arctic air-conditioned cabin during the flight to a warm terminal again. And after that you have the local conditions at your departure point and then arrival destination to deal with. Then on the plane you may have to deal with an extended period in cramped conditions. With all these differing climates and different situations you will be asking yourself what on earth should you then wear while travelling on a plane? On any flight you will want to be comfortable and look stylish at the same time. Having flown all my life thanks to my dad who worked for an airline, I have learnt a lot about the art of being comfortable and stylish while flying. So without further ado here are my suggestions on what to wear on a plane so you will be comfortable and stylish.

The following items included in the post provide plenty of comfort and a touch of style, making them the best clothes and accessories for flying. Be the best dressed in the cabin with my guide to in-flight apparel. Please note if you purchase any of these items through Amazon, i receive a small commission without any extra cost to you.


7 Tips on In-flight Apparel to keep you Comfortable and Stylish while Flying


1. Wear Layers, Layers, Layers


My biggest tip is to wear layers of clothes when you travel on a plane. This way, you can take off clothes if hot and put them on if cold. Which in turn, helps you to maintain optimal comfort during your flight. You don’t want to freeze during your flight and end up arriving with a cold at the other end. Nor do you want to boil in too many clothes and be unable to cool yourself. Another advantage to wearing layers on your person means the less you need to pack in your luggage.

Your initial layer could be a pair of jeans or slacks or leggings with a t-shirt or shirt. Then add a layer of a jumper or sweatshirt or jacket. For added warmth maybe a shawl,  pashmina or scarf which can sort of double as a blanket or be folded up into a pillow.


2. Choose Clothes made from Breathable Fabrics


Try to choose clothes made from breathable fabrics. Cottons, linen or silk are great fabrics that breath. They allow air and moisture to pass through them providing you with more comfort. Basically if you wear fabrics that don’t allow air to circulate around your body they will hold sweat on your skin. This makes you feel dirtier and wetter faster and cause you to smell quicker. So breathable fabrics are a must during your flight to keep you comfortable. And you will stay stylish, unlike someone who hasn’t worn breathable clothing and gets off the plane all sweaty.


3. Wear Loose-fitting Clothing


Another thing to consider when deciding what to wear on a plane is to ensure you wear layers that are loose-fitting. Loose fitting clothing (pants, skirts and tops) help to reduce the risk of DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis) by not restricting blood flow through the veins. On long flights you may spend a long time in a cramped seat so feeling comfortable in your clothing is a must. You don’t want tight clothing to impede your movement. Being comfortable can help you sleep better on long-haul flights.


Read More: 10 Tips To Get Sleep on a Plane


4. Don’t Forget Your Feet – Wear Comfortable Shoes


Comfortable, simple shoes that are flat and easy to get on and off are a must for your flight. You will be standing, sitting, walking, etc. before, during and after your flight and so your shoes need to be comfortable. And if you need to take them off to go through the x-ray machines you need your shoes to be easy to get on and off. This is why I prefer a slip-on kinda shoe. They are also easier to get off your feet on the plane. If you are restricted by seats around you, you cannot always reach your feet to untie or tie shoe laces. Slip-on shoes are just easier.


5. Wear Compression Leg Wear


Although I have said it is advisable to wear loose-fitting clothes on your flight, it is highly suggested to wear compression socks/stockings during long flights. The socks or stockings help to promote blood circulation which helps to prevent swelling of the legs and DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis). Compression socks will also help to keep your legs warm. There are plenty of stylish compression leg wear out there, check out these.


6. Have Clothes with Lots of Pockets


As airlines can be very strict with their carry on luggage having clothes with pockets where you can store items for your trip can be useful. You could easily put your packet of tissues, lip balm, ear phones, etc. in to a pocket. This way you don’t have to keep accessing your carry on luggage for those little things during the flight. And if your luggage is weighed you may be able to avoid excess fees by having some things in your pockets. This is where cargo pants can come in really useful!


7. Don’t forfeit Style – Choose Something Stylish to Wear


Don’t throw all your fashion sense out of the window just because you are taking a flight. There are many functional clothes out there that are stylish and comfortable. And also loose fitting that you can wear on a plane. It is amazing by adding a scarf, some jewellery or a nice pair of flat shoes that you can be comfortable and stylish. And looking stylish can sometimes help you be upgraded. It won’t happen all the time but sometimes when flights have been overbooked staff are advised to look for stylish dressed people checking in to upgrade. True!


The Perfect Plane Outfit for Women


Check out these items and put together your perfect in-flight outfit. Add a t-shirt over a pair of leggings, jeans or skirt. Then add a shawl or cardigan with some comfortable shoes.


The Perfect Plane Outfit for Men


Put together your perfect in-flight outfit for your flight. Team a t-shirt or shirt with a pair of jeans or pants and add a light jacket or hoodie or blazer and some comfortable shoes.


Don’t forget a Bag for Your Personal Items


There are all sorts of bags available to carry your items. Many are now RFID security bags. Check out these.


Suits those travelling with a Laptop

Stylish bag with pockets

One of my favourites!

Are You Ready to be Comfortable and Stylish when you Fly?


So there you have it, my 7 suggestions of what to wear on a plane so you are comfortable and stylish at the same time. I hope you have found them useful and will implement them next time you fly. If you have other suggestions to add to my list I would love to hear them in the comments following. Happy Travels.


A Man And A Woman Standing At The Airport In Casual And Stylish Clothes.

Thanks for sharing!

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Sharyn McCullum Travel Writer and Founder Of Live Work Play Travel, Work Abroad, Work Online, Travel Blog Enjoying At Beer At The Coldstream Brewery In The Yarra Valley, Victoria, Australia.

Sharyn McCullum – Travel Writer / Blogger, Remote On-line Worker, sometime Digital Nomad and Travel, Live and Work Abroad Expert. Is a chocoholic, coffee connoisseur and lover of ’80s music. Been travelling all her life thanks to her dad who worked for an airline. Lived in London 4 years on a working holiday. Has holidayed in Hawaii over 15 times and currently calls Melbourne, Australia home. Is inspiring others to live work play travel around the world with this blog. Read more about Sharyn here.


  1. simplyjolayne

    Let’s just hope that we can be back to flying soon!

    • Sharyn McCullum

      Totally agree with you there. I’m looking forward to this pandemic being over. On saying that, Australia is covid free and we can fly interstate at the moment, but that can change!

  2. Natalie

    Great tips! I always wear tons of layers when flying, but that’s usually because I’m an overpacker and have to wear all the clothes that didn’t fit in my bags hahaha. I’m working on packing less though! Also, I usually end up needing to wear my hiking boots on the plane since they take up a lot of space, but I also take flip flops in my carryon backpack to change into when on the flight 🙂 Never tried compression socks, but I’ve been considering giving them a try. Thanks for sharing this!

    • Sharyn McCullum

      Thanks. I have been flying all my life cause my dad worked for an airline so I have massed a lot of tips for what to wear on a plane.

  3. Alison

    Such a great list. Hope I can use it soon!

    • Sharyn McCullum

      Thanks. I have travelled on planes a ver long time and you really need to be comfortable and hopefully stylish at the same time.

  4. Sanika

    Pockets are definitely my best friend when travelling!

    • Sharyn McCullum

      Pockets are my best friends too when travelling. Particularly secret pockets for valuables.

  5. Karen

    These are great tips. I am all for wearing layers because I vacillate between being very cold, and then being overheated once the plane is in the air. I also like to wear a very loose shoes so I can get them off easily.

    • Sharyn McCullum

      Glad you like my tips and that I’m not alone with wearing layers and loose shoes!

  6. Melissa - My Beautiful Passport

    Yes please with staying cozy when traveling! Love wearing layers. Definitely need to work on my flight style though

  7. Josy A

    Great tips! I totally agree about layers! I can never tell if I will be melting or freezing on flights, so it is always good to be able to adjust! I have to admit, I often have to forego comfy shoes as I often travel in my hiking boots so that i don’t have to carry them!

  8. Kez

    I always wear loose fitting clothes and slip on shoes! In fact, I’ve always wondered how people deal with wearing lace up shoes on flights. I mean, for me they would just be a pain!

    • Sharyn McCullum

      Sounds like you do a lot of travelling too and have thought how to be comfortable on a plane. Glad I’m not alone!


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