Should I Wear Compression Socks on a Plane? – Tips from a Travel Expert

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), traveling by plane can increase the risk of developing Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) – a potentially dangerous condition caused by blood clots that form in the legs. For this reason, many travelers are turning to compression socks for added comfort and protection during flights. But just when should you wear compression socks on a plane, and how can you make sure you’re selecting the right pair? Here, I share my personal tips and experiences as a travel expert with over 40 years of experience.

The Benefits of Wearing Compression Socks on a Plane

Compression socks are tight-fitting, form-fitting hosiery that are designed to support your veins and muscles as they work to keep your blood circulating properly. By wearing these specialized socks on a plane, you can reduce your risk of developing DVT, as well as reduce swelling and improve circulation in your legs. That being said, there are a few important considerations to keep in mind before you purchase a pair.

Tips for Choosing the Right Compression Socks

When selecting a pair of compression socks for travel, it’s important to choose one that is specifically designed for air travel. Make sure to look for a pair that has graduated compression, meaning it’s tighter at the ankles and gradually looser toward the top. This helps promote healthier circulation in your legs by pushing blood back up towards your heart. Additionally, it’s important to make sure the socks are comfortable, so be sure to try them on before you purchase.

It’s also worth noting that there is some debate as to whether or not compression socks are actually necessary on a plane. While there are some benefits to wearing them, it’s ultimately up to each individual traveler to decide if they’re necessary or not. As travel expert David Smith explains, “Every traveler has their own unique needs and comfort levels when it comes to long-haul flights, so it’s best to go with what works best for you.”

Frequently Asked Questions

To help travelers make informed decisions about whether or not to wear compression socks on a plane, here are some commonly asked questions about the topic:

Q: Do compression socks really help on a plane?

A: Yes, compression socks can help improve circulation and reduce the risk of DVT on a long-haul flight. However, they may not be necessary for everyone, so it’s important to consult with your doctor before making a decision.

Q: When should I wear compression socks on a plane?

A: Generally, it’s best to put on your compression socks before your flight and keep them on until you’ve arrived at your destination. This will help ensure that you’re getting the most benefit from them.

Q: How often should I wear compression socks on a plane?

A: The frequency with which you wear compression socks on a plane will depend on how long your flight is and how frequently you travel. If you’re taking a long-haul flight, it’s best to wear them every time. However, if you’re taking a shorter flight, it may not be necessary to wear them.


As a travel expert with over 40 years of experience, I believe that wearing compression socks on a plane is a smart decision for many travelers. Not only can they help reduce the risk of DVT and improve circulation, but they also provide added comfort and support. However, it’s ultimately up to each individual traveler to decide whether or not compression socks are necessary for their specific needs. I always recommend consulting with a doctor if you’re unsure.

If you’re looking for more travel tips and advice, be sure to check out my free travel checklist. Or, if you’d like to share your own tips and experiences, please join the conversation in the comments section below!

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