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If there’s one thing I know well; it’s how to dress for international travel! I have literally circled the globe countless times in the past twenty-five years. And, I must admit I’ve honed the perfect airplane outfit.
I can hardly wrap my head around it…I’m leaving Manila in a few days. It’s time to embark on yet another pan-Pacific journey back to America. In fact, I may even be in the air now if you are reading this post fresh off the press. If so, could you send up a prayer for God’s protection?
It’s not lost on me that I’ll experience something firsthand that few other people in the world will ever see. I am flying across the world during a pandemic…through empty airports and wide-open skies.
Why am I flying now? It’s time to go home…
I’ve been quarantined in my apartment for eleven weeks and now, I’m busting out in an epic way! Frankly, the thought is surreal and I have wondered if it would actually happen. In fact, I’m flying on one of the only international carriers still running flights out of our city.
The Perfect Airplane Outfit
While comfort and function are essential for long-haul airplane travel, that doesn’t mean you can’t look put together at the same time. The perfect airplane outfit has the following characteristics:
- Dark fabric – You never know what you will end up spilling something on a long trip, not to mention what a flight attendant might actually spill on you (yes, it happens).
- Stretch fabric – Airplane seats are uncomfortable enough. You don’t want to deal with restrictive clothing. But, beware of heavy or tight spandex for long flights.
- Long top – Look for tops that fall well below your derriere. You may also want to go for short sleeves if you are hot-natured, then you can easily layer on a light jacket.
- Light drape sweater- I bought this travel sweater years ago. It has a long front and short back. It’s amazing how many temperature shifts you have to deal with on a typical flight. I often start off warm and then freeze during the middle of the night. Some airports have the temp set on arctic blast, while others are set just above sweat.
- Small cross-body purse – You don’t want to deal with your big purse on a long flight, nor do you want to lug it through an airport. Narrow down your essential items: lip balm, pick or comb, pain killer, moisturizer, passport/id, a small wallet with credit card & money, socks, and lozenges.
- Comfortable shoes – Slip-on shoes are your best bet. Trust me, you don’t want to deal with laces…more about that later.
I think we all have an idea about comfort, but let’s talk a little more about function. I layer on a drape sweater for a very functional reason. Airplane bathrooms are small by any standard. The long ends of a drape sweater can be tied up before you enter, which makes sure nothing touches the floor…enough said.
Let’s also talk about shoe choice. You want to stay away from laced shoes if possible. Many security points require shoes to be removed and it’s already hard enough to wrangle your luggage and remove your electronics without having to worry about the shoes.
Actually, I would not typically wear ballet slippers on a long-haul flight. Why?…because I often like to take my shoes off when I am at my seat. I like to pack no-show socks in my bag and put them on after the flight is well underway. I prefer to fly in slip-on loafers that are roomy enough to slip my socked foot into for a trip to the restroom. No, this look is not particularly attractive, but it gets the job done with the least amount of hassle.
There you have it…twenty-five years of travel knowledge packed into one perfect travel outfit! Not only is this travel outfit comfortable and functional, but it’s cute enough for meeting whoever is waiting for you on the other side.
“The Lord bless you
and keep you;
25 the Lord make his face shine on you
and be gracious to you;
26 the Lord turn his face toward you
and give you peace.”
I hope this post allows you to dream about a future day when travel is a possibility again.