Wear This Color On Your Flight And You May Receive Better Treatment

One of the best things about flying on planes is there are no stringent requirements dictating your wardrobe choices. Unless you go barefoot or wear clothing that airlines deem "inappropriate," no one will scrutinize you if you opt to show up for your flight clad in just sweats or pajamas or decide to dress to the nines. However, if your goal is to experience superior service from flight attendants, embracing a particular color could make a significant difference. And yup, you've guessed it: The color in question is none other than the ever-vibrant and eye-catching red.

Advertisement

Travel expert Stephanie Lee noted on Airline Tips that donning red clothing bolsters your ability to stand out and, therefore, increases your chances of getting noticed by airline staff. She claimed that because red is such a striking hue, flight attendants might assume you are "more important or of higher status," resulting in a more favorable service. While this has yet to be proven, Lee's theory is rooted in what scientific experts call "the red dress effect," which suggests that red clothing increases a person's attractiveness and, by extension, their perceived status. "It doesn't have to be a red dress or a sexy outfit," Adam Pazda, a psychologist at the University of Rochester, explained to Science. "It can be a red T-shirt."

Advertisement

There's merit to wearing the color red

Wearing red during your travels can also affect the overall impression you make on fellow travelers, not just flight attendants. The vibrant color not only draws attention but teases what your personality might be like.

Advertisement

"It's brave to wear something colorful, and it says you're willing to experience people's perceptions of you. It also shows an openness to new experiences," Jonathan Bricker, a psychology professor at the University of Washington, told The Points Guy. "Unusual colors or design? To be able to wear these kinds of things in a public place where you're going to be seen getting on and off a plane is a measure of extroversion." Psychologist Seth Meyers corroborated this, noting that the color red indeed sets you apart from everyone else. "The more unusual the color is, the more the person is looking for attention and to be noticed — especially red," he said.

Interestingly, the influence of red extends to the attire of flight attendants themselves as well. Former flight attendant Heather Poole shared the reason behind why many of them wear a bold red lip each time. Contrary to what one might think, it's not just about aesthetics; there's a practical reason for it. They wear red lipstick "so passengers can read your lips during an emergency," she noted (via Escape).

Advertisement

What else to wear for flights

Now, if you're not too keen on drawing attention from others and would rather keep to yourself, you can instead prioritize comfort when dressing up for flights, especially for long-haul journeys. Avoid clothing that restricts your circulation, like tight-fitting garments (such as skinny jeans), or anything that can compromise your level of comfort, like stilettos or other types of heels. Stick to pieces that allow for flexibility and ease, like athleisure, joggers, and cozy sweaters. For those prone to sweating, moisture-wicking fabrics can be a game-changer, helping to keep you dry and comfortable throughout your flight. "Remember, you are sitting in a piece of machinery with confined spaces, sharp objects and strangers," flight attendant Amy Caris told Reader's Digest. "Don't wear your best outfit, but wear something that is comfortable and can slightly stretch. Comfort can be stylish!"

Advertisement

You may not want to be overly casual, though, especially if you wish to be taken seriously. While looking polished and put together doesn't necessarily guarantee VIP treatment, it does say a lot about who you are. "I will say that when I see someone come on the plane and they're dressed nicely and their children are dressed nicely, I do take notice," flight attendant Kate Linder shared with The New York Times. "My personal opinion is that when you take pride in how you look, you take pride in how you act."

Recommended

Advertisement