Why You Should Wear Flight Socks Even If You Are Not The Pilot


Why do Pilots and other Flight Crew Members wear Flight Socks?

Even in our modern world traveling on long-haul flights can still be physically taxing for most healthy people and even more so for individuals with pre-existing medical conditions.

Being in the confined quarters of an airplane during a long distance flight can not only be boring mentally but also physically.

The leg muscles that normally aid in pushing the blood back to the heart become inactive from hours of sitting, causing the blood circulation throughout the body to slow down considerably.

In a worst case scenario, this can create a situation where the blood flow becomes so slow that potentially dangerous blood clots can form in your legs.  This potentially life threatening condition is also known as deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and especially for air travel it has been given the curious term “economy class syndrome” although it can affect people anywhere on a plane.  Deep vein thrombosis (blood clots in the deeper veins) is a condition that can affect people of all ages whether they are physically fit or not.

Pilots and other in-flight personnel are very much aware of the potential health hazards associated with long hours of flying while standing or sitting relatively immobile.

Many flight crew members routinely wear flight socks or pantyhose on the airplane, which is special hosiery featuring graduated compression to promote blood circulation in the legs, to protect themselves against the incidence of DVT and prevent swelling of the legs.


Do you have to wear Flight Socks or how can you protect Yourself?

To protect yourself in a similar fashion as the flight crew you don’t necessarily have to wear “flight socks”.

You can simply choose any comparable type of compression socks, stockings or pantyhose to achieve similar protection. The important part is to choose compression hosiery with graduated compression. 

You may ask – “Why is that important?”

Graduated compression is important because it boosts the blood circulation back to the heart by applying the highest pressure at the ankle from where it gradually decreases going up the leg to the top of the compression stocking or support hose.

Studies conducted with airline passengers have shown that wearing graduated compression socks or compression stockings can indeed successfully prevent the occurrence of blood clots during long-haul flights.

You should be aware as well that deep vein thrombosis can also still develop after a flight, which means that it may be beneficial to keep wearing compression stockings for several days after a plane trip.

If you experience any of the following symptoms you should seek immediate emergency medical treatment:

  • Severe swelling of the thigh, calf or ankle
  • Pain and tenderness in the affected leg
  • Skin feels very warm to the touch or
  • Skin shows discoloration

A blood clot in the deeper veins can break lose and travel up through the heart to the lungs where it can become lodged.  This condition called a pulmonary embolism can be very dangerous to the point of being fatal.

For additional tips we also recommend following the link below to read our post titled…

Tips for Preventing Economy Class Syndrome or Coach Class Syndrome as a Result of Long Distance Air Travel


Finally a Word of Caution.  Before you try any type of compression hosiery or flight socks, check with your physician to ensure you have no underlying conditions such as diabetes, arterial disease or phlebitis (just to name a few) that would or may prevent you from wearing compression socks or stockings.


If you liked this post please let us know by clicking the Facebook like button or the G+1 button below. We also appreciate any comments and personal experiences you have to contribute.


  1. Anonymous says:

    I heard that compression socks can help maintain circulation while you’re flying and guard against blood clots.

  2. Blay says:

    I really like your blog. Awesome.

  3. D. Kartye says:

    This is very beneficial.

  4. Clark L. says:

    I’m enthusiastic about “Why you should wear Flight Socks even if you are not the Pilot”, I read your post and had to subscribe.

  5. Myra K. says:

    Dead on content material, thanks for the information.

  6. Necole G. says:

    Awesome blog! Kudos!

  7. Anonymous says:

    Fantastic web site. Lots of useful information here. Thanks for your effort!

  8. Erick D. says:

    WOW just what I was looking for. Came here by searching
    for economy class syndrome.

  9. Brant B. says:

    Right to the point. Thx :)

  10. C. Hirshberg says:

    Very interesting, thank you.

  11. Gregory says:

    Please check with your primary care physician or specialist on how long you should wear compression socks or stockings. Thank you for your comment.

  12. Orla says:

    Have suffered a PE so am checking on compression socks, when and how long to wear them post flight return.

  13. Jaime F. says:

    Wow, nice post you got here. Will recommend friends to this website for sure. Thumbs up!

  14. Andre M. says:

    Great post!

  15. Anonymous says:

    This is a wonderful and inspiring post. I like it indeed.

  16. A. Wonser says:

    “Nice Post. It’s really a very good article. Thanks”

  17. Anonymous says:

    Excellent site. Plenty of helpful info here. Thank you for your sweat!

  18. Eduardo says:

    Your website contains truly useful information.

  19. Anonymous says:

    Hello! This post could not be written any better! Thank you for sharing!

  20. C. Chugroc says:

    This is an amazing site. I will definitely be checking back.

  21. Dagmar says:

    Great Post. Please keep helping us with your good articles.

  22. Chris says:

    Awesome blog…love to read it, thanks for all.

  23. Anonymous says:

    Usually I do not read blog posts, however this write-up compelled me to do it! Thank you, very nice post.

  24. Cinira says:

    Writing is not an easy thing to do, it takes creativity and good sense, and you’ve got it!

  25. Anonymous says:

    Kudos for this blog post. I think your blog was really absorbing. I look forward to more very soon.

  26. Anonymous says:

    Hi there to all, it was genuinely nice for me to pay a visit to this site. It includes precious information.

  27. C. Rodar says:

    You inspire me.

  28. S. Churchwell says:

    I really liked your blog article. Awesome.

  29. Anonymous says:

    If you continue putting up well written articles just like this then I will always keep coming back to your web site. Magnificent material.

  30. Janae S. says:

    Really enjoyed this blog post. Thank you!

  31. Anonymous says:

    This was a very nice post.

  32. kocioł says:

    i love the information, thanks for posting!

  33. Julee says:

    I had to stop and leave a comment for you on your blog. I absolutly adore it! You are such a great blogger. Thank you for all of this information, it has helped me out more then you know. Smile – I will definitely be back. Keep up the good work! Thanks again.

  34. Anonymous says:

    Truly enjoyed reading.

  35. Angelena P. says:

    This is a great and useful piece of information. I’m happy that you shared this with us. Please keep us up to date. Thank you for sharing.

  36. Anonymous says:

    Usually i don’t provide feedback to blogs, but yours has some rare content hence wanted to thank you.

  37. H. Bouknight says:

    You should take part in a contest for the most effective blogs on the web.

  38. Anonymous says:

    Great information! Keep up the good work!…

  39. T. Colarossi says:

    First time at your site and I really enjoyed reading it. I will come back again in the future to check out some of the other articles.

  40. Anonymous says:

    This short article is completely great, with thanks for that sharing.

  41. Mohammad L. says:

    I agree with your points, fantastic post.

  42. Roxane P. says:

    Hi I recently found your webpage via Bing.

  43. Fitzerald says:

    I just added this webpage to my feed reader, great stuff. I also share that site at Oneview :-)

  44. Aubree says:

    Pretty insightful. Thanks!

Leave a Reply