Travel Blog » Is It OK to Take Your Shoes Off on a Plane?

Is It OK to Take Your Shoes Off on a Plane?

    Take Your Shoes Off on a Plane

    It is expected to have sore feet during long-haul flights. You have walked from terminal to terminal with heavy luggage and now have to sit with your feet on the floor for hours. So, you must make yourself as comfortable as possible, starting with getting yourself comfy shoes like cushion slides to relieve the pressure on your feet.

    Sometimes, however, being comfortable on a long-haul flight means wrapping yourself up in a blanket and wearing no shoes. But is taking your shoes off on a flight the proper travel etiquette? Well, people have different thoughts about this, and we’ll share ours.

    Why you may take your shoes off?

    The easy answer is CONVENIENCE. Keeping your shoes on throughout the flight might be self-punishment unless you wear ergonomic footwear.

    Many airlines support taking your footwear off during the flight if it makes you feel more comfortable. However, you are required to put on shoes when boarding and disembarking.

    If you’re on a long flight and need to de-shoe, go for it! There aren’t really any rules against taking your shoes off during long-haul flights. 

    But before you de-shoe, remember that not everyone likes to see bate feet. And obviously, do not put your feet on the armrest or god forbid headrest. Avoid doing anything that’ll make your fellow passengers uncomfortable or gross them out. If you have to de-shoe, keep your feet out of sight of everyone on that flight. 

    A fast-acting deodorizer will also come in handy if you have sweltering feet. 

    Why you better not take your shoes off

    The plane isn’t exactly a haven of good hygiene. The cabins are generally not clean enough for you to be barefoot anywhere on it.

    Many airlines clean each cabin before any flight, but how well and how long? If they had to make a quick turn in 15 – 30 minutes, there wouldn’t be enough time to get rid of the dirt and germs on that cabin.

    To be fair, there isn’t much they can do within that short timeframe. So, they just get rid of the trash and wipe down regularly touched areas. Generally, many airlines’ deep cleaning could occur once every three to six weeks. 

    While deep cleaning is done occasionally, some areas, particularly the carpets, do not get the proper attention. When liquid or food is spilt on the carpet, the cleaning crew tries to make it less visible instead of sterile clean They quickly wipe it away or scrub it slightly but do not disinfect it – this may cause germs to spread more rapidly.

    Flights become increasingly unhygienic unless you know exactly when the “deep cleaning” has been done and book your flight right after. Otherwise, keep your shoes on as much as possible, especially when visiting the lavatory. Flight attendants aren’t obligated to clean them mid-flight, so you’ll expose yourself to viruses and bacteria if you go there barefoot.

    If you must take your shoes off during a flight, keep your socks on. You will be protecting yourself from germs and other sticky items on the floor, and of course, it’s a bit better sight for your fellow passengers. But we still recommend wearing comfy shoes during the flight.

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