The power of a soft pant can never be underestimated. Never, I tell you.
A comfortable pant arrangement is the ultimate for lounging at home or a casual out-of-the-home look but when it comes to travelling on an international flight, there simply is no better solution than styling up a soft pant.
Soft pant options for wearing on a flight are numerous. There are leggings, ponte pants, fancy tracksuit pants, drop-crotch pants, pleated modal pants, linen pants and cotton mix pants.
The fabric and style you choose will in part depend on your travel destination and how long you’ll be in the air or in transit. A personal preference for a particular style will also come into play.
The key common denominator in choosing a soft pant for flying is the comfort factor. It must be as high as the altitude you’re flying.
Most of us are squishing into a confined space for the duration. You don’t want to be fiddling about with how your pant might be sitting. And you don’t want uncomfortable zips and buttons digging into any part of you.
If you’re prone to swelling like I am then you want pants that adjust to said swelling. And you might want to wear compression tights underneath. I usually make do with just compression socks but am contemplating the full tight for our next long-haul trip.
The longer the flight, the more likely you’re going to feel the cold. Me? I can feel it on a two-hour flight. HAH. So even if I’m travelling to a warm/hot destination I’ll often wear long pants. The weight of the fabric in these may be lighter than if I were travelling long-haul and to a cooler destination but they will be pants all the same.
I’ve toyed with the idea of wearing a t-shirt dress but seem to always revert to the soft pant. Maybe a t-shirt dress and leggings would be a good compromise? Then you could remove the leggings at your (warm) destination.
The below 10 soft pant options for wearing on a flight offer something for most travelling Stylers.
10 soft pant options for wearing on a flight
1. Metalicus leggings $129.95 (leggings – like these and #2 and #3 – CAN be pants on a flight. Just wear a top that covers front and back bottoms)
2. Katies ponte pant $34.97 on sale (thicker than a normal legging weight, I like this style for long travel)
3. O2 Bamboo leggings $39.95 (lighter in weight than ponte, these are great for shorter flights or worn with a t-shirt dress)
4. wYse pleated pant $165 (the modal is these is super soft – you feel like you’re wearing pjs)
5. Sussan textured ponte jogger $89.95 (stepping into fancy tracky territory here. Great if you prefer a non-leggings look but still seek comfort)
6. Bohemian Traders drop crotch pant $139 (drop crotch pants may be polarising but there is so much to be said for their comfort. Keep your top half streamlined to balance out)
7. Bird Keepers chambray pant $69.95 (this lightweight fabric will serve you well onboard as well as at your mild weather destination)
8. Betty Basics pant $29.95 (when a tracky pant looks this good for this less you know you’re on to a winner)
9. Mela Purdie boot pant $309 (need to arrive at your destination looking pristine and ready for business? These are the pants for you. Comfort plus uncrushable style guaranteed)
10. Adrift cropped linen pant $89.99 (if heading to a tropical destination these are the pants for you so that you remain cool on arrival)
What to wear with your soft pant on a flight
It’s all in the layers. I start with a t-shirt or long-sleeve tee and then add a cashmere wrap or scarf and a jacket or cardi. The jacket is mostly for when disembarking as the wrap will provide the warmth in flight. If the scarf or wrap is patterned or dark in colour I find it hides all manner of inflight meal spills. Please tell me, I’m nto alone here in my inability to eat with coordination from a small tray?
On my feet, I wear FRANKiE4 Footwear sneakers. The NAT sneakers I can wear without laces because they have a gusseted tongue. They are easy to get on and off if required at security checkpoints. Bag-wise, I’ll follow the guide I wrote here.
So tell me, what do you wear on an international flight? Are you a fan of the soft pant? What style do you like best to wear?
PS. There are more how-to-pack tips, tricks and ideas in my new e-book: Confessions of a Reformed Over-Packer