Family Vacation: What NOT to Wear

What NOT to wear on vacationWhat NOT to wear on Your Family Vacation.

There are so many options for wardrobes and countless articles on how to pack – especially how to pack a LOT of things in a small suitcase. But…after seeing some really crazy photos and articles I think it is time to discuss what you should NOT wear on your family holiday!

Family Vacations: You Should NOT Wear

1) You should not wear flip flops on vacation.

Big set of colorful pairs of flip flops, illustration in flat design style


Three reasons NOT to wear flip flops:

* You can’t move quickly in flip flops. What if you have to hurry to catch a flight? What if you need to hurry to exit an airplane in an emergency? A study backs this up!  You move slower and take smaller steps with flip flips than in closed toe shoes.

* Germs! Think of the kids! When kids wear flip flops they will walk across the floor in security with bare feet. Do you realize how many bare feet walk  across the floor all day long?  Ew! The germs that can live on the floor are creepy – staphylococcus, athlete’s feet, and the wart causing virus (HPV). Protect those kids’ feet and make them wear shoes!

*Future issues – Flip flops make you hang on with your toes which makes toes work extra hard – so hard that bunions and hammer toes and ouchy feet can be the long term result. Repeated pounding of the heel can cause bone spurs.

2) You should not wear pants with words across the behind.

Ok, I’m aging myself here, but mercy sakes. Who came up with this crazy fad anyway? How about a little decorum? Can you not just be satisfied with looking ‘juicy’? Must you announce you are juicy by writing that description across your posterior?

3) You should not wear too much perfume.

You should not wear perfume in close quarters.When you are going to be in close quarters like a train, plane or automobile, please go easy on the perfume. Not that you don’t smell wonderful, but if you and 30 other people are all smelling super duper wonderful a the same time ….that is a toxic mix.

4) You should not wear only 1/2 an outfit.

You’ve seen her. She is wearing a dress so short it might really be a blouse. Those shorts? Barely longer than her panties. That top? Do we need to see both her bra and her belly button in the same outfit at the same time?

You’ve seen him. Gentlemen…under arm hair is to be seen at the beach only. Plumber’s butt?

When traveling listen to what your momma taught you and dress nicely.

5) You should not wear expensive jewelry.

You should not wear expensive jewelry on vacation.

Unless you are traveling with a security detail, or want to spend way too much time looking over your shoulder, leave the family jewels at home. Wear costume stuff or small jewelry or none! That will give you room to bring some back as a fun souvenir.

6) Grown ups should not wear Pjs on vacation.

Kids get a free pass here as they can totally pull off pjs anytime, anywhere, because they are cutie patooties! They can also pull off cowboy boots, tutus, and a superman cape at the grocery, too, all a the same time, but you can’t! Save the pjs for when you arrive!

What  you SHOULD wear on your family vacation:

1) You should be comfortable.

Other lists will tell you that sweat pants and tennis are a no-no, but those get the green light from me!  I say be comfy!

2) You should wear sturdy shoes.

Happy feet mean happy travelers. Go for sturdy and supportive shoes along with good socks for  long days of standing and walking. Don’t let ouchy feet ruin your trip. Even ONE person with ouchy feet will impact the entire group. Read more here about good shoes and socks.

3) You should wear modest clothes.

Sometimes you have to cover your knees or your shoulders or your head to see a site. Be prepared and dress modestly. Don’t go all the way to your destination, where you will mostly likely never be again, and then miss out on a wonderful sight because you weren’t dressed appropriately. And don’t even think about being that goofy traveler with a map wrapped around her knees trying to convince the security guards to let her in. Geez!

4) You should wear a hat.

Wear a hat

OK – should might be too strong a word, here but in my humble opinion, a hat is a must. I’m a huge believer in a hat! No hair worries, no sunburn worries, and you are covered if you need to visit a church with a head covering rule. Super easy and a great way to look younger. UV rays from the sun are responsible for 80% of aging like wrinkles.

5) You should wear layers.

Layers are easier to control than dressing for the extreme heat or cold. Airplanes are often freezing cold or, if you are stranded on the tarmac waiting for your turn to take off/fix a mechanical issue/de-ice it is often boiling hot. Weather can be unpredictable and layering means you are prepared no matter what.


Dress well, feel good, and look amazing while on your family vacation!

Happy and comfy travels,

Natalie, The Educational Tourist

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16 Responses

  1. francaangloitalian says:

    I never carry pjs with me when travelling but I do have flip flops in my backpack, I use them inside, when I’m in hostels sometimes or at the beach.. they are super light and don’t take any space in my bag so I don’t mind them!

    • NatalieTanner says:

      We use them, too, for slippers in the hotel or going to the shower, but just not as regular shoes. They have a purpose! 🙂

  2. Jen Morrow says:

    HAHA, I always pack a pair of flip flops when I travel. They are perfect for going to the spa, beach, or wearing around yucky hotel rooms. And in tropical climates, they are a wardrobe staple. As for the modest clothes, that really depends on where I am travelling. Modest is a relative description anyway.

    • NatalieTanner says:

      You are so right about modest being a relative term! I just read something the other day where a woman in pants had to put a sarong over her pants while at a church abroad because someone at the church thought they were too tight!

  3. An interesting list of ideas! I don’t wear flip-flops when catching flights and on the move but I always pack a few pairs to relax in! Perfect for hot weather 🙂 I always make sure I bring a hoodie or cardigan for flights too!

  4. Kathy - Walkabout Wanderer says:

    I do love wearing flipflops but I can completely understand what you are saying. They do make your feet work harder and can be very unhygienic. Also they do not give your feet much protection.
    I love the part about words written across your bum. This is one of my biggest hates!

  5. valisesetgourmandises says:

    This article actually made me chuckle, as I could relate to a few points. I also hate when people are wearing too much perfume!
    Whenever I travel, I wear yoga pants with a long tshirt over a long tank top and a vest (even in summer in can get pretty cold because of the AC), sneakers and socks. Comfort is my top priority, but I also want to look nice 🙂

    My husband and I are thinking of going to Sri Lanka for our honeymoon, and I’m wondering if I should leave the bling at home. I have quite a few diamonds on my wedding ring and band and would be devastated if it got stolen! Any thought?

    • NatalieTanner says:

      Congrats! What a fantastic honeymoon spot! Everyone has their own comfort level for wedding rings and bling. I personally leave the bling behind on trips abroad because it is one less thing to think about, BUT I think that would be especially hard for a honeymoon as you are celebrating your marriage!

      • valisesetgourmandises says:

        I think I may be too nervous if I bring it… It will be our first time in Asia. So far the only “different” place we’ve been to was Morocco. I don’t know, I might end up feeling super safe in Sri Lanka but.. better safe than sorry I guess. I was thinking of buying just a cheap band to put on my fingers so people know I’m “spoken for” haha 🙂

        • NatalieTanner says:

          That would put your mind at ease! Great idea. Actually, you can find some really fun things on Etsy and have matching ones made just for travel. 🙂

          • valisesetgourmandises says:

            This is such a good idea! I’ll check it out, thanks! 🙂 This trip couldn’t come soon enough!

  6. Tyler says:

    I only wear flip flops in hostel bathrooms. I wouldn’t use them outside because they are flimsy and break easily. Great tip about the hat!

  7. Ivy says:

    Haha awww but I always wear flipflops everywhere. Especially on tropical islands because i t’s just too hot to wear anything else. I always wear layers though! So that cancels out the flipflops right? 😛

  8. Diana Chen says:

    YES – great tip about the flip flops. I always wear close toed shoes while traveling because you just don’t know what you’ll run into. And why anyone ever wears pants with words on the butt is beyond me!

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