One of the worst things about traveling is having to go through security checks that require you to take off items of clothing or shoes. This is why wearing slippers seems like a viable option for many-you can take them off and put them back on quite easily without having to worry about holding up a line of anxious travelers. However, whether wearing a pair of slippers to the airport is appropriate or not is still up for debate, with some fully supporting it and others totally against it. Read on to find out whether you should be wearing this type of footwear on your next trip to the airport.
Can I wear slippers at the airport? There are no certain rules when it comes to your airport footwear, which means you have the option to wear slippers if you are so inclined.
However, keep in mind that you will still be required to place them in a bin as with any other type of shoe. If you have no socks on, this means exposing your bare feet to a dirty airport floor and potentially contracting nasty infections such as athlete’s foot in the process. If you must wear slippers, consider combining them with a pair of socks so that when the time comes for you to remove your footwear, you won’t be forced to walk around bare feet. You might also want to go for ones that have sturdy back straps to secure your feet without being too tight. Also, ensure that your slippers have good traction to prevent you from accidentally slipping as you navigate the airport to catch a plane.
Although wearing slippers to the airport is not restricted, not everyone is onboard with this type of footwear. Slippers come in a wide variety of sizes, styles, and shapes, as well as different price ranges. Among these diverse offerings, you are most likely to find slippers that would be ideal for wearing in the airport as long as you know what you are looking for. Keeping this in mind, here is a look at the features that might make a pair of slippers great for the airport.
Features of slippers that are great for the airport
1. A closed back
Even though they are easy on your feet, open-backed shoes such as slippers offer very little stability, and your feet are more likely to come in contact with the floor as you move around even when you have them on. Consider wearing slippers that feature open toes and a semi-open back with a back strap that will keep your feet secure without being too tight and uncomfortable.
Alternatively, it is also worth considering bootie slippers if you want to keep your feet warm. These slippers are essentially soft boots, so the perfect pair will adequately support your feet just like a pair of winter boots might but are relatively easier to slip off and off when it is your turn to go through a security check.
2. Good traction
Another concern that many people have regarding wearing slippers to the airport is that they lack traction. A slippery airport floor may prove difficult to navigate on a smooth soled slipper, especially when you are in a rush, and may result in a nasty fall accident.
Nevertheless, you can find slippers that offer adequate traction. Go for a pair that has a built-in anti-slip sole to help you stay on your feet even as you dash through the airport to catch your flight.
While the fluffy slipper is slowly becoming the go-to footwear for those who don’t want to be as comfortable as possible while at the airport and during their flight, you may want something more sophisticated in terms of style. There is a wide variety of slipper design options to choose from and what you go for will depend on your preferences. Just ensure that the pair you go for won’t require a lot of lacing and tugging when you have to remove it.
4. Consider a pair of socks
Just like with any other shoes, you will be required to remove your sandals and place them in a bin, if you don’t have socks on, that means you will have to walk on your bare feet on the airport floor. This is very unsanitary especially when you consider the high traffic that is typically found in airports. You may end up contracting athlete’s foot, a hookworm infection, and bacterial infections, to mention just a few. Furthermore, you are more susceptible to injury when you are barefoot, so you may end up stepping on a sharp object and consequently hurting yourself.
Other dressing considerations to keep in mind
Other than slippers, there are a number of other outfit choices that you may be better off avoiding when are heading to the airport
1. Avoid wearing clunky jewelry, piercings, or anything metallic
As you travel, you probably want to look your best, but an airport is hardly the place where you want to wear bulky oversized jewelry. While earrings, necklaces, and small rings are usually acceptable, you will want to avoid clunky bangles, hard-to-reach piercings, and even bobby pins. Such items will most likely draw attention during scanning and will result in further screening, consequently wasting your time. This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t bring your statement pieces – just pack them instead of wearing them, at least until you’re cleared by security. If your hairdo requires that you use bobby pins to keep it in place, go for plastic or wooden designs rather than metal ones to avoid running into trouble during screening. If you are wearing metallic body piercings that are hard to remove, you may be able to request a private screening instead of going through a pat down.
2. Pack your heels instead of wearing them
You might feel and look good with your heels on, but they are one of the last things you will want to wear when you are at the time. You may have to spend a long time on your feet, which means that your feet will start hurting even before you get on your plane. If they have a lot of straps, they may give you a hard time when it comes to slipping them on and off during security checks. Furthermore, you never know when you will need to run through the airport to catch your flight, and as you might know, heels are hardly the ideal shoes to run in.
3. Avoid wearing loose-fitting items
Tight clothing is uncomfortable to travel in particularly if you are going to be on an hours-long flight, which might explain why a lot of people go for loose fitting clothing. However, outfits that appear overly loose and bulky are likely to arouse the suspicion of airport inspection agents, and you may end up being subjected to additional screening. If possible, try to wear clothing items that are form fitting but still comfortably boxy.
4. Clothing that may be perceived as inappropriate
As petty as it may seem, a t-shirt or any other item of clothing that has images or slogans that may possibly be perceived as upholding violence and/or offensive or threatening language could raise eyebrows and result in the airport security giving you additional screening. Avoid items of clothing that depict guns, weaponry, or anything similar that could come across as aggressively confrontational. This also includes heels, purses, jewelry, and belt buckles that are designed to look like knives or guns, even if they are small in size.
5. Bulky clothing
Even if the temperatures are unbearably low in the airport, you will be required to remove excessively puffy coats, jackets, and other outwear and place them in a bin before you go through the scanner. This just adds time, so you are better off packing them or leaving them at home. Additionally, such items of clothing take up a lot of space, so you may be better off carrying a slimmer coat that is just as warm.
If you know you will be traveling, consider not wearing a belt altogether. This is because you will be required to unfasten it as you go through security only to put it back on a few minutes later as you attempt to gather the rest of your items. If you must wear a belt, ensure that your pants are not too loose to avoid potentially embarrassing yourself when your belt comes off. Otherwise, store it in your carry on, or simply rethink your outfit.
7. To wear or not to wear a hat
It is perfectly fine to wear a hat in an airport as long as you are ready to remove it before walking through the scanner. However, this is just one more thing that you will have to keep up with as you are being screened, so you may be better off packing it.
Wearing slippers in the airport provides the comfort you need if you expect to be on your feet for a while. That being said, consider slipper designs that feature closed backs, good traction, and adequately show off your sense of style. Also consider wearing socks with your slippers since you will be required to remove them at some point, and you definitely don’t want your bare feet on the airport floor.