Editor's pick

Airport Style for Vacation Comfort

It’s vacation time, which means it’s time to consider what you’ll be wearing to survive airports, airplanes, layovers, and transportation – all while not looking like a slob. Modern air travel is largely a miserable experience, and it’s hard to resist the urge to do what you can to make yourself as comfortable as possible. Most of the people you see on airplanes and in airports will probably be wearing sweat pants or workout pants of some variety, and frankly, considering the tiny seats, flight delays, violent flight attendants, and lost baggage, I can’t fault them for that.


Jacket

Pockets, pockets, pockets. Gum, chapstick, wallet, passport, boarding pass – all of these will have to go somewhere, and I absolutely hate carrying things in my hands through airports, because I’m certain I’ll drop something without noticing, or set something down and forget to pick it back up. Internal pockets are key, as is a cut comfortable enough to allow you to wear it all flight long or place luggage in the overhead bins.

 


Shirt

There’s something about airports that makes everyone look like a slob. Things spill. Things wrinkle. If you’re the kind of guy who usually wears a crisp white tee and feels good, you’ll probably end up looking like you just rolled out of bed after a cheeto binge. A collar, or at least a button placket, keeps this effect at bay. Oh, and white is not a great shirt color choice – nothing stays clean on an airplane.


Pants

Yes, pants. If you opt for shorts, you run the risk of finding yourself freezing when the aircraft air-con kicks into hyperdrive. Additionally, I haven’t worn denim on a plane in years, and can safely say that even slim jeans are terrible airline pants. Instead, opt for a breathable, woven trouser of some kind (or at least a loose-cut twill) that will keep you comfortable when you’re sitting on the tarmac and the AC’s not on, as well as when you’re in the air and it’s blasting. As long as the cut is comfortable, the fabric shouldn’t matter that much – as long as it allows at least some airflow.


Shoes

Slip-on, slip-off. You know this, don’t you? Loafers, slip-on sneakers, or slippers are all good choices – shoes that you can remove and put on while the seatbelt sign is on are worth their weight in gold. Anyone who’s ever experienced the horrible feeling of trying to stuff swollen feet back into laced shoes or boots after a long flight knows how truly hellish an experience that is, so keep in mind that after hours in the air, even the walk to baggage claim is going to make your feet feel as tired and uncomfortable as if you’d been walking all day.

 

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7 replies »

  1. Ok, I’m just gonna come out and say it – I don’t understand this whole taking off your shoes during flights thing. I don’t remove my shoes while sitting in the office for 8 hours, why would I do so when sitting on a plane?
    Granted, I’ve never experienced feet swelling, regardless of 1 or 12 hour flights, maybe ignorance is bliss?

  2. A thin scarf is key — if you get cold it warms you up by about 10 degrees (f). Or use it as a pillow.

    Also recommend sunglasses and disposable foam earplugs for napping. Or put a knit cap over your eyes.