Updated April 2020.
It’s a very special What I Wore Wednesday! My recent trip to Qatar gave me a little bit of a packing challenge: what to pack for heat and humidity well over 100-degrees Fahrenheit that provides enough coverage. The solution was linen, light cotton, and some interchangeable pieces. Here’s what I came up with, and hopefully it can serve as a guide for your own trip to the Middle East and more conservative countries around the world!
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On the Plane
Comfort is key, but I also needed to be appropriately dressed upon arrival. I chose linen pants and a flowy, cotton top, along with sandals for maximum comfort. It’s nice to have pockets when I fly, so pants were the better option instead of a skirt.
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A typical summer outfit for me is a sundress. That does not fly in the Middle East! So I needed to find some appropriate-length sleeves for the trip. I ended up with a lot of blue and white, but that’s ok with me because I look good in blue!
Skirt and Pants
Skirts are wonderful for hot and humid trips because you have non-stop airflow! And the linen capris are cool and go with all three tops I brought with me. I always recommend bringing clothes that can be worn in as many combinations as possible.
Swimwear and Activewear
It’s not all deserts and camels in Qatar! There are also beaches, making it a unique destination in the Middle East. But a regular bathing suit wasn’t going to work, so I ordered a rash guard, like surfers wear. I really like it! And I had a pair of baggy black athletic pants already, so I paired it with those. I wore a sports bra and bathing suit bottoms underneath.
I am pretty careful about my feet since my foot surgeries a few years ago, so I always take good shoes for the activities I’ll be doing while I’m traveling. I know we’ll be swimming at the beach, so water shoes are a must. We’ll be walking a lot, probably in sand dunes a day or two, and I will probably try to work out while I’m in Doha, so my running shoes are going to come in handy. And I know we’ll be going to mosques, shopping in town, and going to museums, so my favorite supportive walking sandals are perfect for all of that!
You really shouldn’t go anywhere without a scarf, and especially not to the Middle East! I did plan to get a scarf (or a few scarves) on my trip, but I wanted to be prepared with one right off the plane if need be. And earrings are the best accessory–so easy, and so small, they’re the perfect finishing touch to take with you on travel!
I might have gotten pajamas on the flight, but I’m not sure, so I packed these cute ones my mom got me for my birthday one year:
I flew on Qatar Airways for this trip because it was a far better price and a much better route than any other airlines could offer–if you got to choose between 12.5 hours nonstop or 30+ hours with 3 or more stops, which would you choose? Unfortunately, Qatar Airways is not part of the TSA Pre-check program. That meant I needed to be a little more diligent about my liquids and where I put them. So here they are:
- Contact solution
- Deodorant Wipes (to keep with me during the day–I have a feeling I’ll need to refresh!)
- Body Glide anti-chafing stick (found this recently, and it’s incredible for thunder thighs like mine)
- Clinical-strength deodorant
- Extra contacts and q-tips
- Coconut oil
- Contacts case
- Facial cleaning wipes
Must read: Ultimate Guide to Solid Toiletries
Want to know more about clothing in the Middle East? Check out What Men and Women Wear in the Middle East! Want all my packing tips, including how to pack the perfect carry-on? Check out my Packing Page!
And of course, you’ll find everything you need to know and more on my Qatar Page!
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