Spring racing carnival dress code guide 2019

Spring Racing Carnival has a strict dress code, and all racegoers must dress in traditional attire. Conservative and smart, the dress code is in-keeping with the longstanding heritage of the iconic racing event. Learn more about the Melbourne Cup Carnival Dress Code and how to dress for Spring Racing season below.

Need to Know: Spring Racing Carnival Dress Code Rules

Traditional and polished, the VRC dress code for the Spring Racing Carnival is strict, and there are certain rules all guests are expected to adhere to. Generally, women are expected to wear structured dresses with longer hemlines that fall to just above the knee, and men are expected to wear suits and tailored pieces. Read on to discover what NOT to wear:


No denim – this includes shorts, jackets and jeans

No bare midriffs – this includes cut-out dresses

No untailored pants – this also includes leather pants and leggings

No shorts

No ripped or torn clothing – even if the rips are intentional

No playsuits

No tracksuit tops or casual jackets

No sneakers, thongs, gumboots or casual shoes

No strapless dresses

No dresses or skirts above the knee

Traditionally all women must wear a hat or headpiece but this is also not strictly followed.


No denim – this includes shorts, jackets and jeans

No untailored pants, including leather pants and leggings

No shorts

No torn or ripped clothing

No casual jackets, like tracksuit jackets or bomber jackets

No sneakers, thongs, gumboots or other casual shoe

No shirts without collars

No jumpers or sweaters without a tailored jacket over the top

No cravats

No brightly coloured suits

No caps or beanies

Need to Know: Flemington Racecourse Dress Code By Area

Different areas of Flemington Racecourse have slight variances in dress code regulations, for example, the Melbourne Cup dress code for general admission will differ to the Stakes Day members dress code. Read on to find out more about Flemington dress codes below.

General Admission

There is no real dress code for general admission, however, guests are expected to wear appropriate attire and dress traditionally during Spring Carnival.

The Birdcage and VRC Member Areas Dress Code

Also applies to Members Car Parks and Dining, Enclosures and Corporate Hospitality areas.


Men are required to wear:

A suit with tailored slacks or tailored chinos

Sports coat or blazer

A tie

Dress shoes (polished)


Women are expected NOT to wear:

Short jumpsuits or playsuits

Clothes that show off the midriff area


Visitors from overseas are invited to wear the formal national dress of their home country.


Young children must be dressed neatly and always be accompanied by an adult. Children aged 12 and over must adhere to the above guidelines for men and women.

Owner and Trainers Areas

Owners and Trainers are encouraged to dress smartly and keep inline with traditional dress code, however, the dress code within these areas is smart casual. Items that are NOT acceptable are:



Torn or ripped clothing

Tracksuit pants


Slippers or dilapidated footwear

Spring Racing Carnival Dress Code For Every Event

Derby Day Dress Code

Official Flower: Cornflower

Derby Day is the first event of the Melbourne Cup Carnival and kicks off Spring Carnival season. The dress code is black and white, and guests are expected to dress accordingly.

Melbourne Cup Dress Code

Official Flower: Yellow Rose

High-fashion and show-stopping, the dress code at Melbourne Cup is traditional and glamorous. The race day is the biggest in the Spring Racing season, and racegoers dress to impress. Usual Spring Racing dress codes apply here, but there is some room for experimentation with your race day outfit.

Oaks Day Dress Code

Official Flower: Pink Rose

Also known as Ladies Day, Oaks Day dress code rules are feminine and romantic. Although still traditional in style, most racegoers at Oaks Day opt for floral, pastel designs. At Oaks Day, the mens dress code is still strict, but lighter, neutral suits and pastel shirts are acceptable.

Caulfield Cup Dress Code

Official Flower: White Rose

Caulfield Cup is the first race day of the Spring Racing Carnival marks the start of the Spring Racing Carnival. There is no strict dress code for the event, but bright colours are usually popular on the day.

Stakes Day Dress Code

Official Flower: Red Rose

The least formal day of the Melbourne Cup Carnival, the Stakes Day dress code is slightly more relaxed. This means higher hemlines for ladies and looser fit clothing all around, although a certain level of traditional dressing is expected. Stakes Day is the last race day in the Spring Racing calendar and is a great day out for all of the family.

Head to our Spring Racing Season Page for exclusive deals plus cashback.

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