Do airplane passengers who dress better get more perks? One traveler we read about says yes. For example, he bought an economy ticket on Air Canada. And when he checked in, he was handed a first class upgrade for free. Even though he wasn’t a frequent-flyer. And the flight was half empty, so no upgrades were necessary. So why’d they do it? The manager noticed how well dressed he was – and upgraded him. 

So, what’s going on here? For many years, airline employees were required to dress nicely if they were flying as a passenger. Women had to wear a skirt and blouse. And men had to at least wear a sport coat and tie. And they weren’t allowed on board if they were wearing jeans or sneakers. 

Most airlines have relaxed their dress codes, but a lot of employees still remember the old days. And they’d rather see passengers in first class who don’t look like they’re headed for the gym. 

Of course, flying can be uncomfortable. So you might prefer to wear running shoes and something comfy with an elastic waistband. But consider this: When a flight is oversold and the airline needs to upgrade someone. Who do you think they’re going to choose: The passenger in the tank top, or the one wearing a nice dress or suit?