What Not to Wear to the Airport

Know what to wear if you want to pass through airport security stress-free

Great style shouldn’t be high on your priority list when dealing with airport security

At the airport, choose function over fashion to take the stress out of getting through security

Getting through airport security can be pretty stressful at the best of times, but wearing the right clothing can make the whole process a lot easier.

We would all love to arrive in style, but sometimes (yes, I’m talking to you, ladies) we must choose function over fashion to make getting through that long security lineup as painless as possible.

Don’t Wear to the Airport

  • Belts: Not only is it a pain to unbuckle your belt and put it through the scanner, but it’s even more annoying trying to put it back on afterwards. If you’re a business traveller and require a belt with your suit, keep it in your carry-on until you’re past security.
  • Jewellery: Jewellery isn’t the easiest thing to take off quickly, especially if it has finicky clasps. It’s best to stick to the basics, like a watch and wedding ring. If you want jewellery to wear at your destination, keep it in a separate bag inside your carry-on so that it’s easily accessible for security.
  • Fussy shoes: Don’t wear heels or sandals with more than one buckle. Keep it simple with comfortable flats that slip on and off. While I recommend looking put together while travelling, I don’t suggesting wear your heels at the airport. Even if you think they’re comfortable, they most likely won’t be by the time you get through security and all the way to your gate.
  • Gel shoe inserts: Think again if you plan on wearing gel inserts in your shoes. Gel shoe inserts are not permitted in your shoes through security or even in your carry-on luggage. But if you can’t live without the comfort of your insoles, pack them in your checked bag instead.
  • Layers: If you’re wearing layers, start removing them before you get to the X-ray machine. You don’t want to wear anything you’ll have to pull off over your head, like a pullover sweater or sweatshirt. Stick to a zip-up sweatshirt or cardigan, so that you don’t have to struggle to take it off or mess up your hair in the process.

Above all, be patient and polite. Being at the airport can be a stressful time for everyone, including security personnel and airline employees.

Claire Newell is the travel media expert for Global BC, host of the travel series Operation: Vacation, best-selling author, spokesperson, wife and mother of two.

Originally published in TVW. For daily programming updates and on-screen Entertainment news, subscribe to the free TVW e-newsletters, or purchase a subscription to the weekly magazine.