Your Say: Do you wear Heels or Flats when you drive? Do you change your shoes for driving or walking?

by Paris B on · 82 comments

in Discussions,Musings,Shoes

shoes Your Say: Do you wear Heels or Flats when you drive? Do you change your shoes for driving or walking?

When I was a kid, I used to go to school with a classmate of mine whose mother would drop us off in the mornings or afternoons, depending on which session I was in. For some reason, her mother stuck in my mind because when we got into the car, she would immediately remove her heels shoes and switch to a pair of flats or slippers that she kept in her car for this purpose.

When I got older, I asked her why she did this, and she said it was because she could not drive in heels. In fact, she would sometimes drive bare-footed! When I picked up driving, the first thing I told myself was that I wouldn’t do this. I would train myself to drive in whatever shoes I was wearing at that time. And I have icon smile Your Say: Do you wear Heels or Flats when you drive? Do you change your shoes for driving or walking?

The downside of course, is that my heels have the tell-tale wear of a woman driver. The base of the heel rubs off and wears off quite quickly. It is no wonder that Tod’s has something called driving shoes. The sole folds up the back of the heel so when you rest your foot on the mat, you don’t get that wear on the heel of your shoes. I would love to own a pair icon razz Your Say: Do you wear Heels or Flats when you drive? Do you change your shoes for driving or walking?

I have also noticed sometimes that some people switch their shoes after leaving the office, either to flats or to a more comfortable pair of shoes. Do you do the same thing?

When I go wandering after work, I wear whichever pair of shoes I’m wearing for the day. I try to buy a pair of shoes that I know will be comfortable enough for me to walk in. However, if it happens to be a nice pair of shoes, but one that I couldn’t walk in for long periods of time, I have a spare pair of flats in my car for this very occasion icon smile Your Say: Do you wear Heels or Flats when you drive? Do you change your shoes for driving or walking?

In terms of driving, I have read that it is dangerous to drive in heels or very thick platforms because you may not be able to gauge the distance and pressure needed to brake, if necessary and your heels can catch in the carpet. So when I drive in heels, I’m a little vigilant about this and by now, its almost sub-conscious for me to adjust my feet accordingly.

That said, my commute to work and to wherever I want to go is by car so I don’t have the hassle of walking long distances to catch public transportation. If I lived in a city where I would commute by public transport, then I might of course think quite differently icon smile Your Say: Do you wear Heels or Flats when you drive? Do you change your shoes for driving or walking?

What do you do? If you drive, do you switch over your shoes in your car? Or can you drive in heels or flats at will? Or do you don’t drive, do you switch your shoes when you leave the office and go walkabout?

Paris B

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[ 82 comments… read them below or join the discussion ]

Hasegawa Ayane March 4, 2012 at 8:42 am

If I’m driving, I usually pick shoes that are comfortable enough to drive in. If I happen to be wearing shoes that have soles too thick or high heels, then I’ll change into a more comfortable pair for driving then change back later on because I do find that it makes quite a difference— I really can’t feel the pedal :P

I have a friends who always drives barefooted and makes it a point to keep her pedals ‘clean’ haha XD

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 2:57 pm

The only time I can’t “feel” the pedal is when I’m wearing platform heels… but that hasn’t happened in a while :)

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beetrice
Twitter:
March 4, 2012 at 9:09 am

I’m one of those barefoot drivers! :P It’s become second nature for me to slip off my right shoe the minute I get in the driver’s seat (unless it’s not my car). As for changing to different shoes outside of work, I usually wear flats or Fitflops to work and then change to heels for meetings simply because of the amount of walking and balancing (in the MRT) required in Singapore – I’ve always wondered how women who wear skyscraper heels and take public transport manage.. :O
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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 2:58 pm

I tried it once, driving barefoot. I can’t remember the circumstance, but I do recall that it felt hot! If I lived in SG or anywhere I had to commute to work, I’d definitely switch shoes too. I am always amazed when I see people walking around in heels all day and up and down subway stairs!

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LeGeeque March 4, 2012 at 9:31 am

You’re actually prohibited from driving in flip flops or high heels in Victoria! I found out inadvertently when I was carpooling to Ballarat one day with a group of guys. They looked at my heels in horror and demanded for the carkeys. It is understandably a safety issue and I have a pair of flats just for this reason.

As for switching shoes after work, I have done it a couple of times but it’s mainly because of the wretched weather that I switch to my wellies. Like you, most of my heels are comfortable enough for long days

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Myranya March 4, 2012 at 5:08 pm

It’s a myth that driving barefoot is illegal in Australia. (or in US, UK, Canada, for that matter). See this form thread, post halfway down by SirLex, he wrote each territory’s traffic dept and found proof it’s not illegal. Yes you should be in control of the vehicle, but that goes for any kind of footwear, or other clothing for that matter. If a loose scarf blows in your face with the window open and causes you to lose control of the vehicle, you can get a fine too; that doesn’t mean scarves are illegal! http://phorums.com.au/archive/index.php/t-146990.html Also in this Courier Mail article, an insurance research director says “Shoes with thin soles and low heels are safest when driving. However Mr McDonald said driving barefoot was safer than wearing bad footwear.”

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:00 pm

Well I didn’t know that! I do agree that sometimes, it can be quite dangerous driving in heels because the angle of your foot can be off when it comes to emergency braking. But what’s the rationale with flip flops?

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rinnah
Twitter:
March 4, 2012 at 10:10 am

When I first started driving I had slippers in my car and used to change. Later on, I learned how to drive with heels. :P but if I’m driving long distances, I prefer flats as it’s more comfortable.

Never did learn the art of walking long distances in heels though so if I’m walking, flats or very low heels it’ll be.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:01 pm

I have a bad habit where if I have a comfy pair of work heels, that I can wear and walk around in, I wear them to death. Its quite silly because then I have to go hunt down another pair of comfy heels! :P

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rinnah
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:04 pm

So when you find that pair of comfy heels… buy a backup (or two! or three!) :P
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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:45 pm

Problem is – good comfy heels = $$ :P

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rinnah
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:52 pm

Haha, true true. Wish there were good comfy yet reasonably priced heels. :P

(Feel like Rockport, priced like Bata!) :P
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Applegal March 4, 2012 at 10:22 am

I used to drive to work in my heels but I got the same wear problem! I’ve switched to wearing slippers in the car when I drive. It’s a lot more comfortable. Funnily enough I can drive with sport shoes and my dressy high heels (that one was out of desperation, was late and had to speed to get to a wedding), but I can’t seem to drive with my work shoes :P The worse I think are thick platform shoes. I’ve heard of people not being able to feel the difference between the brake and the accelerator because of those shoes!! :P

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:03 pm

Actually, I don’t like driving in slippers but flats are better for me. Maybe I should get one of those driving moccasins :D I remember about the platform shoes warning that was given a while ago. I do agree with it in a way, because it does become hard to estimate pressure and pedals if they are too high and too thick :)

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Yiying March 4, 2012 at 11:06 am

I can drive in either heels or flat but I still change to slipper when I wana start driving as I dun like my base of right shoe wear off so quickly. it looks different frm the other.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:04 pm

Haha yep! That wearing off of the heel is starting to bug me. Maybe I should start practising this :)

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Sam
Twitter:
March 4, 2012 at 11:58 am

I drive in either. For very high heels, I usually bring a pair of flats though. I also have a pair of trainers in my car for long walks or unexpected shoe breakages!
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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:04 pm

That’s a smart move! I better keep a pair of flats in my car for such emergencies. I used to have a pair but I’m not sure where they are now :P

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Swati
Twitter:
March 4, 2012 at 12:08 pm

I always prefer flats to heels so its flats for me anytime :)
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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:06 pm

Another vote for flats! :)

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Kari
Twitter:
March 4, 2012 at 12:13 pm

When I first started out I drove in only flats, but lately changing has been a hassle (I’m always in a hurry). I invested in pretty flats, but when I want the height, I’m okay with driving in wedges! As for heels, I still do change them when I get in the car :)

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:11 pm

Teehee but why do you change heels and not wedges? :)

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Kari
Twitter:
March 6, 2012 at 12:33 am

for some reason, wedges feel more stable to me even when driving! haha :D

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Michelle Beh March 4, 2012 at 12:23 pm

I will just stick to whatever shoes I wear that time while driving unless the heel shoes are hurting my heel..haha!!

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:17 pm

If my heels are hurting my feet, I can still drive in them, but walking is a totally different matter altogether! :)

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Jenn
Twitter:
March 4, 2012 at 12:23 pm

I take off my shoes too when I drive… I feel more comfortable that way! :D As for changing shoes after work, i will change into flats or slippers if i know i will be doing alot of walking (eg. shopping spree). Otherwise, I just wear whatever I wore to the office.
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Jyoan March 4, 2012 at 1:15 pm

I don’t drive. But yes, we were taught that it is dangerous to drive in heels. And I think I would change out into flats or drive barefooted, because of safety reasons.

Also, I think that would take of some stress of having to tilt my foot in that angle of the heel for long.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:18 pm

Actually, I don’t get uncomfortable driving in heels – maybe I’ve just gotten used to the angle and adjust accordingly. Sometimes, I find it more dangerous driving in slippers because the flat back can slip and get “stuck” so I usually still prefer driving in a closed back shoe

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Giddy tigress
Twitter:
March 4, 2012 at 2:52 pm

I drive in whatever shoes I wear. However, I hv experimented with barefoot driving and found that I don’t like it. Not sure why…maybe the effect of shoe on pedal is not there.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:19 pm

I found my feet got very hot and uncomfortable driving bare foot. Had to do it once, but can’t make it a habit :)

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ishi March 4, 2012 at 4:24 pm

Years ago, due to work and for practicality reasons I started wearing flat shoes like those Rockport brogues and ankle length boots, all in black. After years of these flat shoes I found that I cannot wear high heels anymore, because the flexor muscle just would not stretch. As the brogues and boots are comfortable for walking, standing and driving, there is no need to change, which is not such a bad deal because although they are expensive, I save quite a bit by having half as many shoes.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:20 pm

That’s interesting Ishi. I have heard of people who wear heels so much that their muscle can’t stretch the other way, so they are stuck wearing heels forever! A friend told me about a lady in her 70s who had to wear heels even in the house!

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lovelygirl March 4, 2012 at 7:24 pm

When driving i will take out my shoes….barefoot that is (pls don’t laugh), easy and comfortable to handle the pedals.

I choose heels and wedges….. High of confidence when wearing them….. No,no,no to flats.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:21 pm

Not laughing :) You seem to have a lot of company in barefoot driving! :D

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Rin March 4, 2012 at 8:12 pm

Hi! I can drive in whatever shoes I wear. Be it flats, flip flops, heels or boots. Everything is fine. Except if they’re kinda high than the usuals that I wear, I’ll always hv a pair of comfy shoes to change to.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:21 pm

You sound pretty much like me Rin :)

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Hanny Daforcena
Twitter:
March 4, 2012 at 8:57 pm

If I’m wearing my “Mega-Tower” heels (my Forever21 platform heel sandals), I’d wear my slippers while driving in the car. However for heels 3 inch and below, I usually drive with them hahaha.
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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:22 pm

Yeah I don’t drive in my platform wedges either because I can’t feel the pedals. But then I don’t wear them anymore so its pretty much a moot point :)

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lazeny March 4, 2012 at 9:18 pm

I always wear my Birkenstocks when driving. I always bring a pair every where I go and then just change to high heels. If I have to walk long distances I wear my Birkenstocks and just bring my shoes with me. It can look funny especially when I’m wearing a dress but I don’t really care now. High heels wreaked havoc on my foot and legs, I only wear them if it’s absolutely necessary.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:23 pm

Sounds like me and my Fitflops :) I don’t change them when driving but I try to have a pair on standby if I know I’m going to have to do a lot of walking because at least they’re comfortable! :D

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Denise
Twitter:
March 4, 2012 at 9:44 pm

I’m not a very good driver and I just recently learned and got my license. I almost always wear rubber shoes when I drive so in case I do have to wear heels, I’m 100% sure I’ll change into more comfortable shoes.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:24 pm

I think that’s a smart thing you’re doing :) Once you are more confident driving, I’m sure you’ll find out the type of footwear that suits you better :)

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Denise
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 10:43 pm

Haha, but I think I’m a rather poor driver in general (no talent at all!) and driving a manual transmission vehicle makes me look even worse. Hope I can use the automatic one so I can eventually be better! Then I’ll think about shoes :)

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 7, 2012 at 4:56 pm

Oh you will Denise! Driving, as with everything comes with lots of practice :) I actually like driving manual cars – it just feels nicer to drive but in the city you definitely need an automatic one or your legs will die in a traffic jam :P

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passerby March 4, 2012 at 9:51 pm

im barefooted driver (inherit it from mum!) :) cos i can feel the ‘pressure’ on d pedal n applied necessary ‘force’ to accelerate or brake :)

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:24 pm

Quite a few barefooted drivers in here! :D

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Esther March 4, 2012 at 10:34 pm

It’s a bit silly, but I always kick off my shoes when I’m driving – barefoot is the way to go! I chalk it down to me being a bit paranoid of my shoes getting stuck and jamming a pedal. :p

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:25 pm

Eeks! Another barefoot driver! LOL :D Don’t you find it gets hot? I find it does which is why I can’t drive barefooted and it feels a bit off :P

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Esther March 5, 2012 at 10:03 pm

Huh, I never really notice, now that I think of it! I guess I’ve gotten used to the heat?

I usually wear easily-removed heels, slippers and sandals though – I reckon if I start wearing boots, this would become pretty inconvenient. xD

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Celine March 4, 2012 at 10:59 pm

I change to a pair of sandals or flats when I drive, as I’ve experienced the heels being caught in the mat/carpet. It’s easier driving an automatic transmission car though as one does not need to use the clutch pedal. As I also use public transportation to work, I also have a pair of heels or comfortable work shoes at the office to change in. I can’t imagine how some can work in their heels on the streets and also balance themselves on the trains. When I first started using public transportation and was walking in a comfortable pair of 2″ heel court shoes, my toes were cramped at the end of the day.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:26 pm

I must agree with you Celine. With an auto transmission, I think its quite easy to drive in either heels or flats. But in a manual transmission car, its much more advisable to wear flats or at the very least, something very comfortable… especially when stuck in a jam :P When I used to take the public transport many years ago, I would trek around in 1.5 inch heels. Those days are gone (thankfully) :P

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Amanda March 4, 2012 at 11:26 pm

I always keep a pair of flats in my car because I can never drive in my heels. Since I live so near to the office, I walk everyday – even if it’s snowing. That tells you I do wear different shoes when I’m in the office ;) In summers, I walk in my flats. In snowy winters, I walk in my Sorel boots and change into heels when I’m at work. If the heels are 2″ or below, I’ve no problems walking in them the entire day but most of my heels are 3″ or over.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:27 pm

If I lived somewhere where I could walk to work, or take the public transport, I would! And I would then wear different shoes to work too so my heels don’t wear out too quickly :)

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Brigita Amanda March 5, 2012 at 12:32 am

Well, Im a high-heel user, but I never drive in heels, in fact Im driving bare-foot.
Usually, I wear slipper to my car and bring my pretty shoes on shoes-bag. I’ll change my slipper my heels when I’m arrive. I walk and work in heels, but couldnt drive with it; not even with slipper :p

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:28 pm

LOL yet another bare footed driver :D

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Honey March 5, 2012 at 8:49 am

My mom taught me Rule #1 for driving – you must be able to hop into a car and drive with whatever shoes you have on! This is to cater for emergencies in the event that you have to run (or drive) for your life. Something like when I learnt to play the organ where you have foot pedals, my teacher made us practice with shoes on. Good advice. I never have to change shoes unlike lots of people I know.

Great topic for discussion by the way. Read a lot of interesting comments.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 5, 2012 at 3:31 pm

I like your Mom’s rule! I have to agree too and back in the day when I was playing the piano, going for exams was hell because I had to wear shoes, but I’d be practising at home in my bare feet! It always felt wrong – its no wonder I never did very well LOL!

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