Here’s What To Wear On A Plane To Look Good & Be Comfy

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Post author SJ

Written by our local expert SJ

Sarah-Jane has lived in Croatia for 10+ years. SJ, as she is known, has been traveling the Balkans & beyond since 2000. She now shares her passion for traveling with her husband & kids.

Choosing the right outfit for a plane ride often feels like you’re trying to crack a secret code. Believe me, I know the struggle all too well – standing in front of my closet, feeling both overwhelmed and a little defeated more times than I’m eager to count.

However much trial and error (okay, maybe more error) over the last 25 years of flying, I’ve gathered some invaluable tips that strike that ideal mix of coziness and style while soaring through the skies.

So, on your next flight, get ready to master the art of looking effortlessly on-trend yet feeling supremely relaxed with my expert insights.

Croatia Travel Blog_How To Look Good & Stay Comfy On A Plane

What To Wear On A Plane

The idea for this article came to me when a friend reached out, expressing her frustration with constantly feeling restricted in her choice to wear jeans and dealing with swollen feet during flights. As an avid traveler myself, I understood her pain.

After countless hours spent exploring airports and enduring long-haul flights, I’ve honed in on the perfect formula for staying comfortable while still looking camera-ready without sacrificing style.

Now, let’s be clear: We’re not talking about designer suits or high heels here. We’re aiming for the perfect combination of functionality and fashion—the kind of outfit that makes you feel good but doesn’t leave you feeling like you’re trapped in a straitjacket.

How To Blanace Comfort & Style When You Dress For A Flight 

Two individuals with a suitcase, one holding boarding passes, contemplating what to wear on a plane to look good and be comfy.

When it comes to dressing for a flight, finding a place between comfort and style is key. I always aim to choose outfits that feel as cozy as pj’s but still look put together enough for unexpected layovers or post-flight meetings.


One of my go-to choices is mix-and-match loungewear. This combination keeps me snug during those long hours in the air without sacrificing my fashion sense. Not only do these pieces allow for easy movement, but they also ensure that I feel confident and fashionable throughout the journey.


Accessories are another important aspect of my travel attire. I love to bring along a cashmere pashmina or a stylish yet functional long cardigan.

They serve a dual purpose by keeping me warm in fluctuating cabin temperatures and adding an extra touch of sophistication to my overall outfit. Plus, they can easily be removed or added as needed, giving me flexibility in adapting to different environments.

Slip On Shoes

When it comes to footwear, comfortable shoes are non-negotiable. Easy-to-slip-on and off shoes like my trainers are my personal favorite. They make going through airport security a breeze while also allowing air to circulate around my feet and preventing swelling during those longer journeys.

By keeping these tips in mind, I hope to get off the plane feeling ready for whatever comes next, both in terms of comfort and style. Traveling doesn’t have to mean sacrificing either one.

Read on for more detailed tips for your next air adventure!

Always Wear Layers & Travel-Friendly Fabrics

Person in striped shirt and red pants, embodying the "Be Comfy on a plane" look while pulling a suitcase in an airport terminal.

When it comes to travel attire, striking the right balance between comfort and style is key. Layering and breathable fabrics are absolute game-changers.

I can’t stress enough the importance of getting these elements right. Trust me, they can make or break your travel experience.

No one wants to be caught off guard by the unpredictable, sometimes frosty temperatures on the airplane. That’s why layering is your best friend.

Start off with a base like a tank top or a lightweight tee, and then add on those cozy layers like cardigans or a soft, snug sweatshirt. This way, you can easily adjust to whatever the in-flight climate throws at you.

Now, let’s talk fabrics. The key here is breathability – choose materials that won’t make you overheat or freeze during the journey. My go-to choices are cotton and linen blends. They strike the perfect balance between keeping me comfy and ensuring I look smart and put together. It’s a win-win situation.

Here’s another perk of layering: It allows you to adapt effortlessly to different climates. You never know if you’ll be going from sweltering heat to a chilly breeze.

Pack A Scarf Or Shawl

That’s where a trusty scarf or shawl comes in. Not only does it take up minimal space in your carry-on, but it also acts as an extra layer when you need it most. It’s like having a versatile fashion accessory right at your fingertips.

Now, let’s address the comfort factor because, let’s face it, nobody wants to feel constricted on those long-haul flights. Opt for comfy pants like looser-fitting jeans or joggers.

These allow proper blood flow, which is crucial for avoiding discomfort and more serious concerns like deep vein thrombosis. Your legs will thank you, I promise.

Suggested Plane Outfits For Different Types of Travelers

Packing for a flight always feels like preparing for a fashion show with the theme “Surviving Long Hours in Confined Spaces.” I chuckle at myself as I toss clothes onto the bed, trying to find something between looking photo-ready upon landing and not suffering in silence because my jeans decided today was the day to wage war against comfort.

Business Traveler’s Comfort And Style

Traveler presenting boarding pass and passport at airport security checkpoint, ensuring to wear comfy attire for the journey - business outfit

For corporate travelers, looking sharp yet feeling relaxed on a plane poses a unique challenge. Opt for outfits that are both professional and capable of transitioning smoothly from an airplane cabin to a boardroom.

Loose pants paired with a blouse should be your go-to ensemble. This ensures you look polished without sacrificing comfort during the flight. A blazer serves as the perfect layering piece—it adds an element of professionalism and can easily be removed if temperatures fluctuate mid-flight.

Choosing shoes that blend practicality with style is also crucial; comfy slip-on shoes are essential. They help me breeze through security checks and keep my feet happy throughout the journey.

To round off the outfit, always wear flight socks. They’re not just for preventing blood clots; they also provide fantastic support during those long hours spent sitting in one spot, making them invaluable on longer trips.

Stay Comfortable On An International Flight

Woman placing a carry-on bag into an overhead compartment on an airplane, dressed in a comfy travel outfit.

Moving from the world of business attire to dressing for international skies requires a shift in focus. I pack my suitcase with an eye on blending comfort with style, something fashion editors and flight attendants always stress.

My go-to outfit usually features jogger pants and an oversized sweater, essential for those long hours sitting in cramped spaces. A cardigan or wrap comes in handy, too, not just for its versatility but because airplane cabins have their own unpredictable climate.

I never forget to wear a pair of comfy shoes. Having easy-to-slip-on shoes at security checkpoints is a game-changer—it’s all about making that travel day as smooth as possible.

Choosing outfits suitable for the destination’s climate also plays a big part in my packing strategy. Whether I’m stepping off the plane into the balmy heat of Bangkok or bracing myself for London’s chilly embrace, being prepared helps me transition seamlessly from one time zone to another without missing a beat on style or comfort.

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Airplane Outfit Vs. Stylish On Arrival

When it comes to figuring out what to wear on a plane to your upcoming destination, it’s crucial to consider the climate upon arrival.

Going To Cold Weather Destinations

Long haul flight shoes - wear shoes you can slip off

Packing for cold-weather destinations calls for extra layers and warm, snug fabrics. I always reach for pants that feel like second skin, topped with a cotton shirt.

Adding a cozy cardigan or a soft cashmere sweater over this base layer provides warmth without sacrificing comfort. It’s key to wear socks—preferably cotton ones—because keeping your feet warm can make all the difference during chilly flights.

For those frosty layovers or dashes through snowy streets upon arrival, carrying a compact yet insulated jacket in my carry-on bag proves indispensable. And let’s not forget about accessories: a knit cap and scarf double as accents and essential barriers against the cold.

Transitioning to warmer climates after landing means peeling off some layers, which is why packing items that fold down small is crucial. Next up are tips for dressing when headed to sunny shores.

Heading To Warm Weather Destinations

Light colors are my go-to because they don’t absorb heat as much as dark shades do. It’s all about feeling pleasant without compromising on looking holiday-ready.

I always pack a baseball cap and sunglasses in my carry-on bag, which are essential for protecting against the sun’s rays after landing (and hiding my messy hair). A lightweight scarf doubles as a quick wrap when moving from the blazing outdoor heat to air-conditioned indoor spaces.

Choosing clothes that can handle a bit of sweat without clinging uncomfortably is vital for any flight leading me to tropical climates. This approach keeps me comfy on the plane and ready to hit the ground running, ready to explore.

Essential Long Flight Fashion Items

I once thought that wrestling into skinny jeans for a flight was my ticket to high fashion at 30,000 feet—boy, was I wrong. My quest for the ultimate airplane outfit led me to discover items that marry comfort with style seamlessly.

Slip-On Shoes Or At Least A Pair Of Comfy Shoes

Woman standing with a suitcase at an airport, wearing comfy shoes for travel.

Choosing the proper footwear for air travel is a game-changer. Sneakers are my go-to because they strike the perfect balance between comfort and convenience. Imagine sailing through security checkpoints without having to fumble with laces or straps—bliss!

These shoes make it easy to kick off when I want to curl up in my seat, yet they’re stylish enough not to cramp my look.

Opting for materials like canvas or soft leather means my feet can breathe, keeping me chill no matter how long the flight. On travels where I’ve worn snug boots or heels, I always regretted my choice – as soon as my feet feel started to swell quickly after takeoff.

Now, wearing something that feels almost as cozy as slippers but looks infinitely better has become a non-negotiable part of my flying attire. Plus, slipping them back on upon landing makes transitioning from plane to exploring new territory smooth and swift – no pit stops required for shoe adjustments.

Stretchy and Breathable Travel Outfits

Moving from comfy footwear to what wraps around your body, stretchy and breathable clothing becomes a game-changer for wear on the plane. I always choose fabrics that feel like a second skin; think flowy plants and soft, airy tops that promise freedom with every move.

These pieces don’t just keep me comfortable during my flight; they also tackle the cabin’s often unpredictable temperatures. Sporting such attire means I can twist, turn, and even curl up in my seat without feeling restricted or overheated.

Dressing for comfort doesn’t mean skimping on style after all! 

Compression Socks

Flying socks for long haul flight_Depositphotos-bgremover_674782400_S

After discussing the comfort of stretchy and breathable clothing, it’s time to discuss something equally essential for your flight outfit: compression socks. I swear by these, especially on long flights.

They’re like secret superheroes for your legs, working tirelessly to boost blood circulation while you’re sitting cramped in that airplane seat for hours.

This not only helps keep the dreaded leg swelling at bay but also reduces the risk of blood clots and deep vein thrombosis (DVT), a severe condition you should be cautious about.

I make sure to pack a pair in my crossbody take on bag every time I’m flying. Slipping them on feels like giving my feet a gentle hug, ensuring they don’t feel too hot or uncomfortable during the journey.

Plus, wearing airplane socks is a travel tip fashion editors and flight attendants alike will recommend wearing. Trust me, this small addition to your travel wardrobe can make all the difference in how fresh and cozy you feel upon landing.

Wrinkle-Free Choices

SJ's feet on luggage sitting on the floor at an airport before a long haul flight.

Choosing wrinkle-resistant clothes for air travel is a game-changer. I always wear items made from blends that resist wrinkling. 

These fabrics are not only travel-friendly but also incredibly easy to care for, making them perfect for long flights or when you’re hopping from one place to another. I make sure my travel wardrobe consists of these miracle workers so I can jet off the plane looking as sharp as when I boarded.

What Not To Wear On A Plane

Dodging the ensemble faux pas of tight jeans that turn into your worst enemy mid-flight will save you from the classic travel discomfort saga. Keep scrolling to transform your next sky-high journey into a runway show with comfort at its core!

Leave Bulky Accessories Home On A Long Haul Flight

I learned the hard way that my love for oversized accessories doesn’t mix well with airplane travel. Hauling a giant tote bag stuffed with everything but the kitchen sink through narrow plane aisles felt like navigating an obstacle course designed to test my patience and arm strength.

Not to mention, trying to fit an oversized scarf thought it could double as a blanket – and a wide-brimmed hat into the overhead bin was like solving a puzzle for which I had no patience.

Sticking to essentials in a small carry-on bag is best.

Choosing what to wear on a long flight goes beyond selecting comfy airplane outfits; it also means rethinking those big accessories.

On my last overnight flight (from Europe to the USA), I swapped out large jewelry pieces for simple studs and left behind any accessory that didn’t serve at least two purposes or wasn’t essential.

Learning from past travels meant realizing that less is truly more when you’re flying. Slimming down on accessories not only saved me space but also spared me from unnecessary hassle during security checks.

Never Wear Tight Clothing Long Haul

Opting for restrictive clothing on a flight can make hours of sitting feel like an eternity. Tight jeans or fitted tops restrict movement and may lead to discomfort as we try to find that perfect position in our not-so-spacious airline seats.

I’ve learned the hard way that what feels good standing might turn into a nightmare at 30,000 feet. Breathability becomes a distant dream, with fabrics clinging too closely, making it difficult for skin to breathe and adjust to varying cabin temperatures.

High Heels and Flip-Flops

SJ's feet sitting next to luggage after a long haul flight at an airport.

Wearing high heels or flip-flops might seem like a good idea when I’m dressing for air travel, especially if I want to look Insta-ready the moment I land. However, these choices often lead directly to regret mid-flight.

Walking through vast airport terminals in heels feels like running a marathon in sandals—not ideal. Flip-flops leave my feet exposed and chilled from the airplane’s air conditioning, hardly what anyone would call a good time.

Switching gears to comfort doesn’t mean sacrificing style entirely. It just means picking shoes that won’t make me wish for teleportation abilities halfway through the terminal. 

Other Tips For What To Wear On An Airplane

Comfortable Undergarments

Pay attention to the undergarments you choose to wear on a plane. Opt for comfortable bras without underwires to prevent discomfort during long flights. Similarly, select underwear made of breathable fabrics to ensure maximum comfort throughout your journey.

Pockets And Versatility

Look for clothing items with multiple pockets to conveniently store small essentials such as your phone, passport, or boarding pass. Additionally, opt for versatile pieces that can be mixed and matched to create different outfits. Not only will this help you pack lighter, but it will also maximize your wardrobe options.

Pack A Change Of Clothes In Your Carry-On

Consider packing an extra outfit in case your checked luggage gets lost or if there are unexpected spills or challenges during the flight.

What To Wear On A Flight FAQs


What should I wear on a plane to stay comfy?

Imagine sitting for hours in tight clothes; it’s like being hugged by a boa constrictor but less exciting. Wear something comfy. Think of your outfit as your armor against the cold cabin air – a sports bra under a cozy sweater and a denim jacket as your shield.

Can I wear heels on an airplane if I’m traveling for business?

Wearing heels on an airplane is like bringing a knife to a pillow fight – unnecessary and uncomfortable! Opt for closed-toe shoes that won’t make you regret your life choices mid-flight. 

Is it okay to dress up when flying?

Sure, dressing up makes you feel like royalty among commoners, but remember: you’re sitting in a metal tube hurtling through the sky, not attending high tea with the Queen. Wear dark colors to hide any accidental spills and bring layers; think of every piece of clothing as part of an elaborate plan to outsmart the unpredictable temperatures.

Should I pack extra outfits in my carry-on bag?

Having additional outfits in your carry-on can be beneficial in case of unexpected circumstances. It is a wise decision, particularly if you want to be prepared for any inconvenience that might occur during your journey. For example, if there are unforeseen delays or mishandling of checked baggage, having spare clothes can ensure you remain comfortable and presentable throughout your trip.

How do I keep myself warm on flights since I’m always cold?

If “I’m always cold” is your mantra, layering is key! Wrap yourself in scarves or wear a cape that can be used as a blanket.

Final Word On A Comfy Airplane Outfit

Long Haul Flight - Cape
I love this cape that is also a good blanket

Finding the perfect balance between comfort and style for your next flight might seem challenging, but it’s absolutely possible with the right approach. Comfortable clothes don’t have to mean sacrificing fashion—stretchy pants, cotton tops, and layers can all be stylish.

Think about how you can apply these tips to make your journey more enjoyable. Relaxed travel doesn’t just happen; it takes planning and smart choices. Let this guide inspire you to pack smarter and fly in comfort, feeling confident in your travel-style game!

Now that you know exactly what to wear on plane trips, I am sure you will travel in comfort every time.

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