Helicopter Clothing: Packing for Doors Off Flights

Helicopter Clothing: Packing for Doors Off Flights

(Updated August 2019)

While planning a trip to Hawaii, the last thing on your mind is most likely what to wear on a helicopter ride. But then, you come across breathtaking open-door helicopter tours, and your packing list quickly changes.

If ‘what to wear on a helicopter ride’ seems like a silly question to ask, you should first consider what a doors-off helicopter tour involves. You may be surprised that a helicopter ride isn’t as simple as hopping into a bubble with your street clothes on.

Safety protocols dictate that you wear a certain type of attire while flying. The primary reason is to keep you safe. But, it’s also because we want you to be as comfortable as possible while riding on the hottest helicopter tour on the planet—literally!

For example, Tropical Helicopter’s Doors-off Lava & Rainforests Adventure flies over gushing lava to the lush rainforest, making for a drastic climate and visual change. For this reason, comfortable and versatile clothing is needed.

Thankfully, you likely aren’t reading this article while the helicopter blades spin overhead. That means you have a bit of time to plan! Keep reading for everything you need about clothes while on the tour of a lifetime.

What to Wear on a Helicopter Ride

First, Check the Weather

Before you pack your suitcase or even lay out your outfit, check the weather! Knowing the weather forecast for the day of your flight will make planning much easier.

Will it rain? How about the humidity? Should you bring sunglasses if it’s a sunny day?

Some of our tours take you through several types of climates and ecosystems. The temperature can change rapidly in these flights, from flying over lava to feeling a misty spray from the rainforest or waterfalls.

As a general rule, it’s important to wear versatile clothing that can adapt to the various climates planned on the tour itinerary.

Choose Durable Over Delicate Materials

It may go without saying, but choose durable over delicate materials!

Consider wearing jeans instead of sweatpants or shorts. They are strong enough to prevent your legs from getting too cold and restless. Also, exposed legs can get chilly from the moisture or wind while in the air.

In addition, we recommend you carry an extra scarf or jacket with you. Not only do they protect you from the cold, but they also have extra pockets to store snacks and water.

When it comes to shoes, closed-toe is your best bet instead of options like sandals or flip flops. Sandals run the risk of falling off your feet and into the tropical abyss below.

Pro tip: Choose dark-colored clothing over lighter clothing! Bright colors reflect light rather than absorb it like dark colors. In this case, light colors will obstruct the view.

Dress for Comfort: Forget the Selfie

Most people like to document the beautiful Hawaiian landscapes with a selfie or two—this is understandable! Hawaii’s unique environment is one that you won’t find anywhere else. Nevertheless, we don’t want to compromise your safety on the helicopter for a few selfies.

Even so, riding in a doors-off helicopter can make the logistics of being photoready a bit more difficult.

It’s not all about fashion and selfies when you’re hovering over an active volcano. Even if lava isn’t flowing on the day you fly out, it’s still smart to beat the heat with appropriate attire.

In any case, selfies only capture your shoulders and face! Take this opportunity to pair your favorite top with a pair of durable jeans and closed-toe shoes.

We get it—the perfect selfie can help you remember this once in a lifetime experience! Nevertheless, prioritize safety over a fashion-forward selfie.

Know What to Wear on a Helicopter Ride?

Hopefully our tips have helped you pick out the most comfortable yet presentable clothes to pack for your adventure.

Remember, these Doors Off flights aren’t just about rules and fashion choices. We want you to have a good time! We encourage taking as many pictures as your phone allows, and we want you to look good in them, too. Luckily, darker shades or sturdy jackets won’t spoil any of that. In fact, due to the way the light hits, you may end up looking better in darker clothing instead of lighter items.


These general helicopter clothing guidelines are meant to keep you safe and happy. If you have specific questions about our tours or apparel suggestions, don’t hesitate to contact us. You can also head over to our Frequently Asked Questions to see if your question has already been answered!


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