Choosing an outfit for a long-haul flight can sometimes be overwhelming. There’s just so much to consider. What items of clothing will see you through upwards of 12 hours of sitting, eating, drinking, and sleeping, also taking into account the journeys to and from the airport at either end (in destinations that could be in opposite seasons)?
15 Outfits To Wear On Long Flights
There is nothing quite like loading yourself into a single, poorly padded seat for multiple hours, which can soon lead to some major discomfort. But don’t let that stop you from exploring! You can survive a long-haul flight if you pack some airplane essentials and know a few tips for what to wear on a long flight and what seat to pick!
Here’s a list of outfits that will save you the stress of thinking about what to wear on long flights for comfort and ease, according to frequent flyers.
1. Ribbed Top With Matching Ribbed Pants and Fanny Pack
According to Nana Agyemang, the CEO of EveryStylishGirl and a social media editor who travels long-distance once a month, a comfortable set is a must for in-flight comfort. “Comfort is my top priority [when I fly], so I try to pick clothes that don’t restrict me and give me freedom and space to move,” Agyemang says.
Even more crucial, though, is a fanny pack, which Agyemang considers to be the ultimate travel companion: “They fit so much in them, and since mine is literally attached to my hip, it’s easily accessible.”
2. Compression socks
Compression socks are worn to help prevent blood clots and deep vein thrombosis. You might also pack a pair of cozy socks to keep your feet warm if you suffer from poor circulation.
3. Slip-on shoes
“Bringing a pair of hotel slippers or light slip-on shoes for the flight is always handy. That way, you can pop them on if you’re heading to the bathroom on the aircraft and keep your socks clean.” Says Chris Tucker.
4.Wool Coat With Sweatshirt And Wide-Leg Sweatpants
Let your top layer act as both your style enhancer and an extra carry-on, Coscarelli suggests. According to her, a pocket-rich coat lets you sneak in stuff that doesn’t fit in your bag, and it doubles as an extra pillow. Win-win.
5. Crew-Neck Sweatshirt, Matching Joggers and Oversize Blazer
“Since I prioritize comfort over style with the outfit, I like to accessorize with a cute, trendier bag if I can,” Coscarelli says.
6. Quilted Jacket With Leggings And Rain Boots
“I always feel better being covered up on planes,” Coscarelli says. An easy outfit recipe for doing so is a quilted jacket that can double as a pillow, cozy leggings that aren’t too constricting, and chunky rain boots that would otherwise take up a lot of space in your luggage. One big tip is to avoid clothing that has too much skin.
7. Blanket Scarf or Travel Blanket
A cute blanket scarf will make your outfit look more put-together. Plus, it can serve as a good travel item to wear during your trip. You can even get a travel scarf that has a hidden pocket for your passport and such.
Packing a blanket, scarf or travel blanket is the best way to keep you warm and avoid germs because you can’t be too sure if the blankets provided on your seat are clean.
8. Hooded Sweatshirt, Yoga Pants, Big Bag and Sporty Sunglasses
Crew-neck sweatshirts are great and all, but according to Coscarelli, the real in-flight must-have is a sweatshirt with a hood: “I always need a hood—it doubles as an eye mask when you need to sleep on a long flight. Plus, it’s just extra cozy.”
9. Wool Coat With Crew-Neck Sweater, Short-Sleeve T-Shirt And Baggy Jeans
Jeans aren’t your travel-day enemy—tight, constricting jeans are. By opting for a baggier, more worn-in pair, all the aforementioned issues with denim go out the window.
10. Long-sleeved maxi Dress With Trench Coat And Sneakers
Don’t be afraid to wear a dress on the plane. If that’s more aligned with your style and comfort zone, you should wear one. If you do, though, pick something that’s soft, stretchy, and void of any “pokies.”
11. Trench Coat with Claw Clip And Big Tote Bag
“The big claw clip is another travel staple for me,” says Agyemang. “I hate having my hair in my face when I travel, and the clip just keeps everything intact. I feel like it actually maintains the volume in my hair when I travel. Therefore, by the time I arrive at my destination and take my hair down, it’s still full of body and bounce.”
12. Plissé Top With Plissé Pants And Retro Sneakers
Agyemang is adamant about not wearing jeans or heels on long flights. “They’re so restrictive and painful, in my opinion,” she says. Try something like a plissé set paired with retro New Balance sneakers—Agyemang’s go-to brand—instead.
13. Oversize Sweatshirt With Baggy Sweatpants And Sport Sandals
“I try to wear anything without what I call ‘pokies,’ which are things that can poke you when you’re sitting for long periods of time: buttons, snaps, too-tight waistbands, hooks, itchy tags, etc.,” says Alyssa Coscarelli, an editor and stylist who traveled multiple times per month pre-pandemic.
14 Fitted Turtleneck With Quilted Jacket And Track Pants
Since you never know what the in-flight temperature might be on your plane, layering can make or break your travel experience. Freezing for 13 hours sucks, but so does sweating the entire time. “I like to wear layers so that I’m bundled up when I need to be but can peel off the layers if it gets warm,” Coscarelli says.
15. Shirt with Cardigan or Hoodie
“I love to wear soft T-shirts when I fly. I love to pair my black leggings with a white T-shirt but keep in mind that white does show stains. If you’re prone to spills or traveling with little ones, you might want to wear dark tops or shirts with a print.” Kim Tate.
Long Flight Tips To Stay Comfortable
The first tip has to do with seat choice.
- If you have long legs, consider splurging on an extra-legroom premium seat if available. Just be sure that the premium seat includes extra legroom; some premium seats do not have more room and only offer early boarding or forward seat location perks. If you’re not splurging on premium seats, then check the seat map, and don’t be scared to pick a farther back row. People love to sit closer to the front, so those rows fill up faster.
- Keep in mind where the bathrooms are located. Sometimes extra legroom seats are also near the lavatories and if you’re in an aisle seat on a big plane with middle-plan lavatories you may have people next to you often, not to mention the smell and noise.
- Choose a window seat if you like to sleep. “I often choose aisle seats to prevent claustrophobic feelings; however, I never sleep well with people constantly bumping my shoulder or elbow or grabbing my seat back as they walk past.” Selecting a window seat allows you to lean against the wall or window and snooze away undisturbed.
Hopefully, now you’re ready to relax on your next flight. Picking the perfect outfit for a long flight and knowing a few of your favorite flight tips should help you survive your next long flight.