Before the days of Uggs, sweatpants, ripped jeans, and flip-flops, air travel was anything but casual. Flying used to be an occasion, and one that you most definitely dressed up for.
While it's fair to say that the elegance once associated with flying has dwindled (I wish Champagne and five-star meals were still a part of every flight), there's one thing that should never go out of style when it comes to travel: good manners.
Frequent flier and editor Sophie-Claire Hoeller wrote an essay for Business Insider in which she revealed that a flight attendant recently praised her for wearing a pair of over-the-knee boots with heels on a flight from New York to Los Angeles. According to Hoeller, the flight attendant thanked her for dressing up, saying, "It means a lot to us flight attendants, and no one does that anymore."
But beyond creating a more pleasant and respectful work environment for flight attendants, there's another important reason to avoid dressing like a slob when traveling, according to Hoeller's sources: You're more likely to get an upgrade (hello, first class!). She writes:
When AirFareWatchdog.com founder George Hobica asked a gate agent directly whether they'd be more likely to upgrade someone who was dressed well, the answer was, "Yes, the better dressed you are, the more likely you are to nab that seat. I am not going to put someone wearing flip-flops up front with our best customers."
Furthermore, in terms of practicality, dressing up for a flight also makes a lot of sense. If you want to avoid all those checked baggage fees, wearing your nice clothing (think suits, blazers, sweaters, and boots) will save a lot of space in your suitcase.