Former Tour Leader's Airport Style Guide For Bluffers

Many of you might be travelling this time of the year. One of the best bits about travelling is the preparation, right? It's fun to dwell on clothes, too. In your imagination, you already see your selfies at Insta-worthy breathtaking sites.

The first day, travel by plane. How do you pick your airport outfits? Since it's a special occasion, full formal like a good girl? No no, that's very 70's. Refer to the airport styles of Deepika, Sonam, or Kangana? Oh acchaa, Ranveer Singh? Bravo!! …. Ooops, no no no! If we common people copy celebs, we'd burn our bums.

Like Victoria Beckham said "airports are my runway", celebrities wear unrealistic stiletto heels and tight skinny jeans for airport look. As fashion brands provide products to them, their airport style is like film costume and having photos taken is a part of their job. 
In the first place, they don't sit in Economy Class. Their seats would be huge and recline flat. In First Class, they're even provided loungewear.

Image of a girl in skinny jeans and stiletto heels in an airport


I used to be a tour leader. My job was to bundle the tour passengers at the airport in Japan, send them to the right gate, and once we reach the destination, assist their sightseeing/hotels/meals in tandem with the local guides, be a leader cum friend cum salesperson cum servant for the customers, solve 100 troubles, stage memorable experiences for them, and bring them back to the airport of origin without missing anyone.

In the plane, tour leaders usually get an aisle seat far ahead from the tour group. We unsocially indulge in rest, as stormy work is waiting for us from the moment we reach the destination. 
Some customers ask us, 'I didn't see you on the plane. Were you in Business Class?' ...Come On, remember how much (little) you paid for the tour!

After a long flight, the customers stagger out of the aircraft with bedhead, rumpled clothes, and exhausted faces. In contrast with them, the tour leader had better look smart and reliable, ideally with some luminous halo. Pretty often we'd never been to this destination country and were secretly nervous AF, therefore we HAD TO at least bluff with attitude and natty appearance. That's why we were careful about our outfits.
So what I am going to write is "survival airport look for bluffers" from such experiences. 

image of the inside of an aircraft

 


Key Requirements Of Airport Style
There are 3 points. No need to care when you're flying a domestic short flight, but for a long one, you'd feel a huge difference.

1. Relaxed
Matlab, don't squeeze anywhere of your body. Being crammed in an aircraft for more than 10 hours, Economy Class Syndrome is a real threat.  
If you’re a hardcore jeans fan, …good luck. But try to pick stretch jeans or wide ones.
"Compression socks" is apparently good for blood flow of legs.


Image of compression socksCompression high socks

 

2. Cold-Proof
It's terribly freezing in the planes. As terrible as in the Indian corporate offices.
I heard that it is for prevention of germs spreading, but is it true? We'd be perfectly ready to welcome cold virus in such a dry and cold place.

Not like "tanktop & down jacket", but layering thin items is better for adjusting your body temperature.
You sometimes feel a huge blanket scarf or a woollen shawl as God’s gift.
When you remove your shoes, it's better to wear socks/slippers to keep your feet warm.
To breathe in the dry aircraft without feeling fiery in the nose, I always wear a big mask with a wet handkerchief. It makes me look nice and suspicious, but my customers were sitting too far behind to see me anyway.

Image of Yoshiko with a woolen shawl to wear in the plane or during the tripWoollen shawl is a God's gift.

 

Image of a thin black cardigan to layer in the planeImage of artificial leather blouse to layer in the planeLayering game for thermoregulation and time pass.

 

3. Wrinkle-Free
But you don't want to look like a pyjama-partying teenager, nor cover all your body with pore-choking synthetic fabrics. Now, raid your almira again. This bit is important for bluffers.
I admire older women getting on the planes gracefully in sarees. In "English Vinglish", Sridevi was doing that. Sarees are suitable for planes in the sense "warm in the lower body", but wouldn't it get wrinkled in the bum??

 

And accessories play important roles, too.

Hats
Hats are bluffers' go-to item. They not only hide your bedhead but even make you look stylish even though you had been sleeping like a log till 10 minutes ago.
Wide floppy hat, beret, baseball cap, flat cap, wool cap... have fun styling with your outfit.
In this post, I could add hats only in 2 photos since I don't have varieties. I still don't know good hat shops in India. Making hats is in the bucket list of MIRCHI KOMACHI!

Bag
We tour leaders generally draped a small functional bag with multiple pockets across our breasts, plus carried a small travel bag as a carry-on luggage. In the bigger one, we put tour materials, documents, and least extra clothes so that we can work even if our check-in baggage goes missing. I used to make my luggage small so that I don't need to check-in anything.
I recommend you to make 2 separate carry-on bags like this so that the small bag with valuables never leaves your body.

In addition, when you happen to purchase something big in tax-free shops, Furoshiki would come in handy (check it out in my previous blog post).

Image of 'tour leader bag' to keep valuables during the tripOne of my 'tour leader bags' which survived numberless fierce battles.

 

Shoes
-  Easy to walk
   
Do you know the average distance a traveller walks in an airport? It’s about the same as Borivali-Churchgate. …OK, I lied. But a surprising distance.
   Also, if you are lucky, you get a rare opportunity to run for your life or enjoy the slide from the aircraft.
-  Easy to wear & remove 
   In some airports, you're forced to remove your shoes at security checks. If 
you’re in lace-up boots, you’d be the most popular person in the queue.
-  Rather loose for you
   
Your feet hit a mark in growth during a 12 hrs flight.

 

Now, Some Outfit Ideas!
Presented with my kindergarten-level Photoshop skill. Have a good laugh!
* These are not the outfits I used to dress as a tour leader. Mind you.

 Image of an airport style outfit idea with leggings, cotton parka, and a long white tunic

Yey, MIRCHI KOMACHI new item "parka jacket" is good for travels.
One-piece dress is basically the most comfortable item for air travels, but in India mostly you get very thin ones. Warmer ones are ideal for planes.
When you're in a dress, wear leggings underneath to keep your lower body warm. I am persistently repeating "keep warm" and now feeling like a very old grandma...
To shop our parkas, check out on our website.



Image of an airport style outfit idea with a denim jumpsuit, cotton blazer jacket, and a hat

I am not a good liar to say normal-length cotton blazers wouldn't get wrinkled during a long journey in a plane. But slip on in your carry-on luggage if you have some time at a transit airport or spend time gracefully in luxurious lounges. You never know where you get a fateful encounter, do you?
To shop our very light blazer jackets, check out our website.



Image of an airport look outfit idea with biker jacket, track pants, and a white lace tunic

Celebs wear leather biker jackets often, but biker jackets by MIRCHI KOMACHI are way lighter.
These track pants are a bit too loose for me (or my legs need much more muscle), so your track pants should be more slim and stylish.
To shop our biker jackets, check out our website.

 

image of an airport outfit idea with hooded t-shirt, oversized blazer, and a military cargo pants

Ahahaha looking pretty shady with sunglasses, ain't I?!
Sportive look is super comfortable, but you want some style as well. Then a blazer jacket comes to your rescue. This one is an oversized plain blazer (personal).
To shop our blazers, check out our website.

 

Image of airport style outfit idea with a hat, denim jacket, message kurti, and a palazzo

Chaloooo reached the dream destination! Hide your bedhead, bluff like you're straight out of the dressing room.
When your outer and bottoms are plain, how about adding a message T-shirt, or a Message Kurti with proudly-Indian fabrics? Add some fun and energy.

 


Writing this post has gotten me itchy feet. Aaaaahhhhh!! Unless you are a person who reaches orgasm every time you pass Passport Control of foreign airports, you would never become a tour leader whose work is damn heavy at the lowest pay. I am one such freak.

For the lucky people who're soon to take off, I'd be very happy if this post has reminded of valid points. Have a safe and awesome trip. And please accompany a MIRCHI KOMACHI item or two!

Bonus video:
Cute video of an airport staff recorded from a moving aircraft.
Wish your travel be full of such funny moments and great people.


 

 


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