What to wear on a flight to Canada?

Updated: Oct 23, 2020 | Tags: Flying to Canada, Canada Tourism

Travellers who are taking long-haul flights to Canada can benefit from learning about how to dress appropriately and comfortably for their journey, both to the airport and when on the plane. This article reviews a few considerations for travellers when it comes to dressing smartly for their long trips to Canada.

Consider weather conditions at your destination and layering your clothes

Take time to think about the weather conditions at your arrival city rather than the weather conditions at your departure city. If you are travelling from a hot country to a cold one, you should be prepared for the lower temperatures on arrival. Pack additional layers if you are travelling from a warmer climate to a winter environment. Thin layers are easier to take off before, during and after your flight, especially in confined spaces where dressing rooms or toilet cubicles may not be available. An ideal way to wear multiple layers is to have a base layer, such as a thin thermal layer, followed by a fleece or sweater and then a jacket or winter coat. Have three layers allows you to adjust your body temperature as needed. You can also bring an extra sweater in case you need an additional layer, which can also be used as a pillow or throw when sleeping on the plane.

What types of fabrics should I wear onboard?

Safety is another consideration when it comes to your travel clothes. Synthetic blend fabrics, in particular, might be an attractive option due to their lack of wrinkling when sat for a long time, but they are also prone to fire. They ignite very quickly, shrinking then melting, and this is not a risk that you want to have to take when on a plane. Any evacuation situation on a plane could be hindered by your safety hazard clothing, even things like friction burns from an escape slide.

Clothing that is made from natural fibres like cotton, denim, leather, and wool can offer the best protection during an evacuation or fire situation. Natural fibres also enable your body to "breathe" more easily and are less likely to become sticky in the heat. Things like jeans and a sensible sweater can prove to be a good combination, and as it is also important not to leave large areas of your body uncovered. Shorts and miniskirts leave bare legs, which you do not want to be exposed in an emergency or in cold conditions.

The outfit that you choose needs to be non-restrictive; not necessarily baggy and cumbersome, but certainly not skin-tight. This is purely for freedom of movement and circulation purposes when up in the air.

What about footwear on board a plane?

To prevent a wide number of injuries, you should wear suitable footwear in the airport and on the plane. Things like open-toed sandals and high heels are not going to give you the protection that you need, both in an emergency situation and in a more general sense. Airplanes can be a crowded space, with lots of feet covering the same ground. You don't want to suffer from misplaced steps from others on to your almost bare feet. A good quality pair of sneakers or boots are far more appropriate. Your shoes should also be comfortable. If you need to take them off in-flight, you run the risk of struggling to put them back on again because our feet can expand at altitude.


If you can remember to dress for your destination or be prepared to change by adding or taking off clothes, wear non-restrictive, body-covering clothing and have the footwear to be able to cope with any kind of situation, then you are ready for your flight to Canada.

Get started on your eTA application

If you hold a passport from a country that is eligible for the Canada eTA such as the UK, Ireland, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, or many other eTA eligible countries, you will need to obtain an approved eTA before your tourism, business or medical visit to Canada. Get started on your application, otherwise, visit the eTA requirements to learn more about the Canada eTA

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