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This is one basic skill that I’ve discovered a lot of adults don’t have…and let me tell you: it’s a really easy and affordable way to entertain kids. With the lazy days of summer ahead of us and more free time on our calendars, it’s the perfect time for every mom to learn How To Make the Best Paper Airplane! Trust me, this will come in very handy…

How to make a paper airplane long collage

Best Paper Airplane Design

Paper airplanes have been a rainy day staple in our house for as long as my boys could walk. After all, they are simple crafts, fast to put together, and they require no extra supplies or preparation on my part. The best paper airplane is also a safe indoor “toy” that gets my kids up and moving without breaking furniture or each other’s teeth. I’m in!

But what I’ve realized is that certain adults (ahem…my husband; ahem…my babysitters) don’t know how to make these little gems. Crazy, right? Well if you’re one of the deprived set over the age of 20 who hasn’t folded paper into the shape of an airplane in the last 15-20 years, then let me refresh your memory. It’s easy and it only takes about 1 minute!

Supplies for the Best Paper Airplane Design

  • Paper
  • Small piece of tape
  • Ruler

Type of Paper

I typically use a regular sheet of 8.5 x 11-inch all-purpose printer paper (since it’s readily available in our home), or a sheet of colorful construction paper. Construction paper works well because it’s thicker and heavier, which improves aerodynamics and makes the paper aircraft more durable.

Step by Step Instructions for Easy Paper Airplanes

The best paper airplane design comes together in about 1 minute, and is easy enough for any beginner. Trust me, it’s not complex! Pretty soon the kids will be flying a paper plane as though they’re the Wright Brothers!

1. Fold paper in half lengthwise on a straight line.

Paper Airplane 1

2. Fold top right corner into the middle of the paper. The edge should line up along the center line.

Paper Airplane 2

3. Repeat Step #2 with the top left corner coming into the middle crease. Both of the top corners should be folded down at this point.

Paper Airplane 3

4. Fold paper in again from the right side to the center crease so that the points touch.

Paper Airplane 4

5. Fold corner on left to repeat on the other side.

Paper Airplane 5

6. Pick up the plane and fold it in half along the middle line. The folded edges should be on the inside of the plane.

Paper Airplane 6

7. Make a wing by folding down one of the flaps (the right side) to the outside.

Paper Airplane 7

8. Repeat on the left side to make the second wing.

Paper Airplane 8

9. I like to secure the plane together with a small piece of tape on the top edge, making sure that all of the previous folds stay put!

Paper Airplane 9

Then your plane is ready for take-off! Give it a gentle toss, and watch it glide through the air and defy gravity! Whose plane dives? Which plane covers the longest distance? Keep a record of your flight characteristics, making tweaks to see how it improves.

Tips for the Best Paper Airplanes

  • Use heavyweight construction paper for the best aerodynamics and durability.
  • To add to the fun (and to entertain the kids for a good length of time), spend some time “decorating” the paper aircraft either before or after folding. Grab markers and stickers — customizing a plane is a great way for your kids to express their creativity! Write names on the top of your paper, or add colorful designs to the wings.
  • Make good creases with each wing fold so that they’re sharp, clean, and the plane flies smoothly.
  • For higher speeds and more distance, add a paper clip (or a few layers of tape) to the nose (top point) of the airplane. A heavy nose helps balance the plane, so that it doesn’t fly straight up or float when your child throws it.
Casey holding airplane

Piloting paper airplanes is serious business around here. Which plane goes the fastest? The highest? The farthest? You get the idea…it’s always a competition, and there’s always a winner.

Gibbs Throwing Airplane
Casey Throwing Airplane
Casey Throwing
Gibbs Throwing

Enjoy, friends!!


Hey, I’m Blair!

Welcome to my farmhouse kitchen in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Inspired by local traditions and seasonal fare, you’ll find plenty of easy, comforting recipes that bring your family together around the table. It’s down-home, country-style cooking!

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  1. Gayle @ Pumpkin 'N Spice says:

    I don’t have kids, but I really love this post, Blair! Definitely take me back to my childhood, mainly because I could never make a correct paper plane! I would always get so mad, too! 🙂 I’m actually going to try this out tonight, I think my husband would get a kick out of this!

    1. Blair says:

      Thanks, Gayle! I had to remind my husband how to make an airplane…some things are easily forgotten, I suppose. You’ll be the coolest wife EVER…trust me. 🙂

  2. Ramya says:

    Have been wanting to make one for my 3 year old daughter… Couldn’t really master the paper folding dynamics 😉 thanks for helping me out. It IS a must for all parents!!

    1. Blair says:

      Hah! That’s great, Ramya! I’m glad to know that I’m not the only one who needed this skill!

  3. Ansh says:

    Thank you very much

  4. John says:

    why are you making classic darts? check out the nakumara lock. simple, but flies WAY farther.

  5. kennedy says:

    I love this! I am often using the same old twist in a circle and fall paper airplanes. And today i asked Brady to make me one but than recess was over and when I got homer i seached “HOW TO FOLD THE PERFECT PAPER AIRPLANE“ and you were the first result out of 5,670,000 results!

    1. Blair says:

      That’s awesome! Thanks, Kennedy!

  6. SIRJIT says:


  7. O.C. says:

    Can you please make a paper plain that goes really high in particular. Thank you!

    1. O.C. says:

      plane not plain

  8. kaka says:

    um it kinda work but ok

  9. ~Raye~ says:

    This really helped me out,my class and i were doing a paper airplane project,and i couldn’t master the foldings. But thanks to you i was able to make the perfect one! Thanks so much!

    1. Blair says:

      Great! I’m so glad to hear that, Raye!

  10. Mika the kid says:

    im actually a kid who wantid to makeone thanks!

  11. Mika the kid says:

    flies faster than I thought! [ quick idea] to make it fly EVEN faster, blow a balloon [ but don’t tie it] and attach it to your balloon, with a couple of pieces of tape. then let go of the balloon and SHOOT the plane in the air! [ I’m a 3d grader.

    1. Mika the kid says:

      i mean attach it to your plane

  12. byron says:

    they kind of work but i can adjust thanks for all of this blair.

  13. Sam says:

    Hey Blair. I used this fold for a science experiment. It worked really well, and I got a passing grade. I can’t thank you enough. THANK YOU.

    1. Blair Lonergan says:

      Yay! That’s awesome, Sam. Thanks so much for letting me know!