The best men’s travel shoes for your next trip. Preparing for a trip always includes a flurry of lists, packing, and getting your gear squared away. From a few days to month-long trips, there’s always the stress of picking just the right gear for your journey. One item that’s often overlooked, but arguably one of the most important, is your choice of shoes.
You want a shoe that’s comfortable but durable. Practical yet stylish. Breathable but protective. You almost certainly have 2 or 3 pairs that, between them, accomplish this; but you can’t lug all of them across the world on your trip. You need just a pair that accomplishes everything you need when you travel.
We’ve compiled this list of the best travel shoes for men for just that reason. This is your one-stop-shop for finding the perfect pair of travel shoes to take on your next trip. From long travel days on airplanes to city walking and museums, and even hitting the dirt, these best travel shoes will keep you, and your feet, happy.
The Best Men’s Travel Shoes
Best Men’s Sneakers For Travel
Sneakers are a great call for any trip. For starters, neither of us like to fly with sandals as it feels a little gross. Then when it comes to extended travel days that involve a lot of walking you want comfortable closed-toe shoes that have a thick sole.
Of course, walking around the streets of a major city, you don’t want to look like you’re on the way to the gym so opt for a stylish trainer. Sneakers should be simple, fashionable, comfortable, and most importantly, affordable. All of these sneakers are under $100 with several under $50, so you can save more for travel!
Allbirds Wool Runners
If you’re shopping for a new pair of travel shoes, likely, you’ve already come across Allbirds on the internet. They’ve billed themselves as the most comfortable shoes in the world, made to fight odor, be worn without socks, and generally handle the demands of travel exceptionally. Those are all some tall claims.
While you can undoubtedly contest the most comfortable shoe on earth claim, they are amazing. Allbirds tries their best to source sustainable materials for their shoes, which we love. The style is also great, and they look even better in person than online with high-quality details.
The feeling of wearing them is best compared to wearing a wool sweater comfortable and cozy. Fit is exceptional as they come a little tight, but with your first day of wearing stretch to fit your feet, like magic. What makes these unique are the properties that wool bring such as odor and dirt resistance. They’re also machine washable, dry quickly, and can keep your feet warm even when wet. Oh, and if they’re cool enough for Obama they’re cool enough for anyone.
Vans Sk8 Hi-Top Sneaker
I like to have a relaxed sneaker when I travel and the Sk8 is one of my favorites. They’re appropriate in a multitude of environments and when well maintained and they manage to not feel too casual. They’re super comfortable and look great with a pair of jeans and a tee. I wear mine with a skateboard as the large flat rubber sole provides excellent traction. The Sk8 Hi-top is an easy choice as one of the best men’s travel shoe.
adidas Superstars 2
It doesn’t get more classic than a pair of superstars. Adidas Superstars scream Rock n’ Roll and they’ve been worn by just about every famous musician at some point or another. They even made the album cover for Run DMC.
A robust rubber sole on the bottom does an excellent job at providing traction and a padded midsole makes them comfortable to wear all day long. They’re a beautiful shoe in person and they’ve been accented with the signature Adidas stripes on the side.
Chuck Taylor All Star
There is hardly a more classic sneaker than the Converse All Star. They’re perfect for travel as they’re lightweight, stylish, and comfortable. Plus they have universal appeal as you can find them the world over whether you’re exploring London or Beijing. If you’re looking for that old school look with a pair of jeans these are a great call.
What’s great about Chucks are they’re affordable and reliable in their shoe fit. It’s just a great canvas shoe that has been around decades. There are some drawbacks such as longevity and the fact they lack arch support. If you have custom insoles you can always fix that though. We travel with a pair and swap them in and out of shoes.
Vans Slip-On Sneakers
We love Vans despite this being the first time on this list of the best men’s travel shoes. Their classic slip-on is super comfortable and can be worn with or without socks. Vans classic slip-on blur the line between sneaker and slip-on shoes and look great with a pair of jeans or shorts.
They do require a break-in period with socks as the back is made out of leather and create a tacky sensation that can cause blisters if you’re barefoot. As always we love a pair of shoe that comes around $50 so you have more money for travel.
Nike SB Portmore II Solar Canvas
This is a great shoe and the canvas material has a sharp look different than many sneakers. The color choices correspond well with the complimentary rubber outsoles. At the end of the day, it’s a stylish Nike sneaker perfect for travel.
Don’t expect anything extraordinary about the support in shoes, but they are affordable. They have a nice fit and they’re comfortable for walking around a city all day. Overall the shoe is great and constructed of premium materials.
Nike Men’s Air Force One
Not long ago a pair of Air Force Ones would have instantly pegged you as a tourist, but these days they’re popular around the world. Now they have universal appeal as you can find them the world over whether you’re exploring London or Beijing. If you’re looking for that old school look with a pair of jeans these are a great call.
Rossignol Alex Velour
We’re very familiar with Rossignol brand for their ski and snowboard products, but they also produce some great lifestyle apparel for when you’re not on the slopes. The leather sneakers, Alex Velour, are a great addition to your wardrobe if you want a high-quality sneaker.
We love the thick velour leather that’s similar to suede throughout the sneaker. A robust rubber sole on the bottom does an excellent job at providing traction and a padded midsole makes them comfortable to wear all day long. They’re a beautiful shoe in person and they’re accented with the signature stripe Rossignol strip on the tongue and rooster on the side.
Scarpa has been in the outdoor adventure business for some time, producing footgear for rock climbing, mountaineering, hiking, and others. This means they know a thing or two about making men’s shoes that hold up to the rigors of an active lifestyle.
They’ve now taken that knowledge and funneled it into the attractive and comfortable Margarita. With a very comfy EVA midsole, this shoe is excellent for spending a day on your feet around the city.
But the Vibram rubber outsole is very tough and will work just fine for some off-roading when the situation calls for it. Apart from the suede sometimes keeping the feet a little warm, this is an excellent choice to bridge the gap between practicality and style.
Merrell Burnt Rock Travel Suede
If you’re looking at a long trip, with plenty of miles of walking ahead of you, then Merrell is a solid place to look for shoes that will hold up to the rigors of walkways and woods. The Burnt Rock Travel shoe, in particular, is an excellent bet with its attractive design but durable construction. Honestly, we’ve found you can never go wrong with a pair of Merrells.
With Merrell’s‘Kinetic Fit’ base and EVA midsole, the Burnt Rock is an exceptionally comfortable shoe that can easily go from box to pavement with minimal break-in time. The breathable mesh also keeps the foot cool during all your adventures, while the durable rubber base and toe cap will keep it in excellent condition for a long time.
Best Men’s Dress Shoe For Travel
A pair of dress shoes for travel are always great to have in a suitcase if you’re on your way to a city. They’re stylish comfortable and can sag underdressed for any unplanned dates.
It all depends on your plans, but I also love to bring a pair of casual leather boots in lieu of dress shoes if it feels right.
With dress shoes, you can find a pair of shoes that look stylish, allow you to blend in with stylish locals, and are comfortable enough to wear all day.
Johnston & Murphy Mcguffey
You can leave it to Johnston & Murphy to produce a stylish shoe that will look at home in any fancy restaurant in town. The company has been producing formal shoes for over 100 years and knows how to make you look the part for the city scene.
The McGuffey Plain Toe has a comfortable rubber outsole. With an attractive array of different colors, you can pick out an incredibly soft leather. They’re great for a more casual wedding out of town.
Clarks Tilden Walk
These are a great looking pair of dress shoes that are casual enough to be worn around town and handle more formal occasions. A Dual goring across top of the shoe provides added comfort and orthopedic footbed ensures comfort all day.
It’s a super comfortable dress shoe that is affordable and can be worn as an everyday shoe. The Clark Tifden is a comfortable shoe with a round toe and thick outer leather.
Cole Haan Original Grand Shortwing
These are a nice pair of shoes that combine comfortable rubber soles with a more traditional wingtip shoe. They are casual enough to be worn around town and handle some formal occasions.
It’s a super comfortable dress shoe that is affordable and can be worn as an everyday shoe. Cole Haan delivers a comfortable shoe perfect for travel and long days on your feet.
ECCO Helsinki Slip-On
These are so comfortable and appropriate for formal occasions. They’re perfect for a travel shoe that is affordable and provides excellent support.
The color is a nice rich brown or dark black, and the leather quality looks good enough for dress shoes. They look great with a pair of slacks, jeans, or a suit. The seam line and toe on the shoes are attractive with a slight round rectangle shape.
Clarks Atticus Lace
These are a great looking pair of dress shoes that are casual enough to be worn around town and handle more formal occasions. They’re a more traditional dress shoe cut that is simple but has a casual leather color and quality.
It’s a super comfortable dress shoe that is affordable and can be worn as an everyday shoe. The Clark Atticus Lace is a comfortable shoe with a round toe and hard rubber sole with a slight heel.
Best Men’s Athletic Shoes For Travel
We love to get active in our travels and we find ourselves seeking out more wild locations every year. While a pair of trainers or slips on might work on city streets, you need a tough shoe to take on the trails in the mountains or jungle. These shoes are for men who want to hit trails, gym, mountains, or streets full steam.
Brooks Ghost 11
These are a go-to running shoe for serious runners and have been so reliable they’re now in their eleventh version. The newest version comes with the Brooks DNA Loft midsole for a smooth ride that aids foot health. I am a pretty avid runner, and I’ve tried out a number of the top brands. I’ve settled on a pair of Ghosts and rank them as one of my favorite cushioned running shoes. The Ghost 11 is a beautiful cushioned shoe that offers excellent support and allows for marathon mileage coverage that leaves your knees and feet feeling fresh.
Ghost 11 is a road running shoe, so it’s a good fit for those who are looking to hit the pavement running while abroad. Given that many streets around the world are uneven, we recommend a cushioned shoe like these as the best men’s running shoe for travel. Running on cobblestone makes it easy to pronate or supinate so opt for a shoe like this on rough surfaces. They aren’t for everyone as they’re very cushioned so if you like a little more feel and nimbleness in your shoes I’d look elsewhere.
Salomon X Ultra 3 GTX
If you are traveling with only outdoor adventure on your mind, then these Ultra 3s may be just what you need. Often voted one of the top hiking shoes on the market, these are built with only the rocky trail in mind. Salomon has strong name recognition and there is a good reason for that.
From their waterproof but breathable design, down to their grippy and rugged bottom soles; these shoes will support you through every trail hike on your trip. Naturally, their design is aimed at only intense outdoor sports, and we wouldn’t recommend them for a city-oriented trip. However, they’re super useful for tackling mountains.
Hoka One One Speedgoat 3
Hoka One One Speedgoat 3 is my absolute favorite trail running shoe out there. I recently upgraded to the Speedgoat 3, which has been named the Editors Choice by Runner’s World, and they are great for traveling. First, they are lightweight saving you weight in your precious airline luggage.
They fit well, are durable, and stable and fit for any day on the trail. I’m particularly happy with their traction, which has kept me from falling more than once on some muddy trails in South America. As for comfort the Speedgoat 3’s have a nice cushion feel and decent arch support. Hoka One One is famous for having strong arch support and helping people who pronate or have flat feet that aid proper running form.
Merrell Trail Glove 4
For minimalist out there you should try out some Merrell’s best selling shoes over the last few years. These trail running shoes are meant to mimic barefoot running with all the protection of shoes on your feet. These aren’t those goofy toe shoes, but high tech trail runners with midsole support and sturdy soles that offer protection.
Running in these shoes quite literally feel like running in gloves as they bend and move naturally with your feet. It’s a remarkable experience the first time you take a run in them. I would only recommend these for those who know what they’re getting into as they offer minimal cushion. However, they come with the massive bonus of being super lightweight and compact saving space and weight in your luggage.
Merrell Moab 2
These shoes are built tough, built to last, and are just in general good men’s travel shoes. I have probably put over 500 miles, and they got me through a year of bushwalking in Africa – I still haven’t thrown them out. They are well padded, extremely comfortable, and for about a $20 different you can get the Gortex version (waterproof).
You can easily walk all day in these shoes through all different terrains. Seriously Moab Ventilator, you are some of the best men’s walking shoes for the outdoors.
Best Men’s Casual Boots For Travel
A great pair of boots are a timeless look and will still hold up well for modest hikes and modern cities. I love a great pair of leather boots that are versatile enough to take a wide range of settings.
Danner Mountain 600
If it’s looking like you might need something a little heavier than the standard shoe, then take a close look at the Danner Mountain 600 Boot. Danner has been building boots since 1932, and in that time they crafted some of the footwear for the U.S. Marine Corps, so you can bet they know what they’re doing.
The Mountain 600 is a perfect balance between performance and aesthetics. You’ll have a rugged boot that can take anything you throw at it, but appear like you’re wearing stylish leather city kicks. They are completely waterproof and feature a comfortable, shock-absorbing midsole, perfect for a few trail adventures during the day, then heading back into the city for the evening. The more rugged construction also means a longer break-in period, so wear them around at home before you take off.
Chippewa Apache Boots
These are probably my favorite pair of boots I’ve ever owned. I spent some time looking for the perfect boot brand and came across Chippewa. They make gorgeous leather boots and they’re all made in the USA. Which, for me, means supporting my own nation and it brings a level of quality when not mass-produced cheaply.
The boots are made of thick soft leather, strong stitching, and they’re extremely comfortable. These boots are tough and perfect for both a safari and life in general. As a tip I’d pick up some leather treatment to protect the boot and add a level of water resistance.
Red Wing Heritage Iron Ranger
Red Wing comes in a close second for boot brands in my opinion and they’re also made in the USA. These boots are both functional and stylish. Designed with quality materials and solid craftsmanship. Red Wing’s Heritage Iron Ranger’s have a high ankle and steel toe for great protection beyond the bush.
If I was considering a serious African safari into the deep bush I’d go for a pair of steel toe boots. What I love about these boots and the Apaches are they are some of the best damn boots in terms of style, quality, comfort, and longevity. You can’t go wrong with a classic. Now all you need is a hat and a good camera for safari.
Clarks Desert Boot
The Clarks Desert Boot has become a fashion staple with its casual look. Comfort is pleasant in these shoes, and they’re perfect for walking around European cities in the fall or winter as a pair of wool socks will keep your feet comfortable.
The boots remain affordable yet deliver a quality product. Desert Boots come in high-quality suede leather, which looks beautiful in person. Comfort is exceptional and the slight heel distributes your weight nicely across your feet.
Be forewarned in regards to the crepe sole on these shoes. While the soles look great, they pick up dirt and offer almost no grip in wet conditions. I remember learning this the hard way after stepping on wet tile entering a building.
For a stylish men’s boot, these are a solid go-to for travel. The BL585 has great tread, insoles, and strong arch support which makes much more than a stylish boot for men. Not only can these boots feel comfortable in a more formal or stylish event, but they’re equally at home on a ranch or going for a walk in the woods. An EVA footbed with special technology in the heels ensures all-day comfort.
The boots are made of thick soft leather, strong stitching, and they’re extremely comfortable. I love the slip-on fit and the pull tabs make it easy to put on and take off. As a tip I’d pick up some leather treatment to protect the boot and add a level of water resistance. Altogether they’re a tremendous travel boot for men.
Best Men’s Hiking Boots For Travel
Travel doesn’t have to be all about drinking a beer on the beach or exploring a new city. I love getting out in the mountains so much that we now call it home, and feel more comfortable in a pair of hiking boots than anything else. There are a plethora of trips and destinations that call for more robust shoes and that’s when I reach for a pair of hiking boots.
Salomon X Ultra 3 Mid GTX
Salomon has been at the top of the hiking boot game for a long time. With exceptional quality, outstanding durability, and solid overall construction, it’s easy to see why. Now they have entered their contender in the lightweight hiking boots fight, and we couldn’t be happier.
Weighing in at just under 1lb, the Salomon X Ultra 3 Mid hiking boots will have you walking longer and faster without even noticing. The mid-ankle design gives you great support, the improved lugs provide excellent grip, and the toe protection is robust. Overall, these lightweight hiking boots for both men and women are a fantastic option for hikers of all levels.
It’s a good boot for anyone looking to have a lightweight boot without sacrificing performance. If you’re seeking a boot to move fast and run downhill with some ankle protection this is a great hiking boot.
Merrell Moab II
Merrel is one of our favorite boot brands and they deliver some of the best value on the market. They make entry-level boots that are super comfortable for long distances and with weight on your back. Merrell has managed to keep these boots affordable as they haven’t updated the design in years and it’s proven to be a reliable boot. It’s not broken don’t fix it.
The boots are a blend of leather, textile, and synthetic. They are waterproof, comfortable, rubber soles, and high ankles. On the outsole is tough Vibram soles that provide good cushion and traction on slick surfaces. The major downside of the boot is its lack of support.
The Moab 2 operates more as an easy trail boot that something designed for scrambling or traversing craggy trails. If you spend a lot of time in the Rocky Mountains with lots of scree and rough rocks you may want a more robust hiking boot. However, if you spend more time out in warm environments these boots are great. As a bonus, they come in a non-waterproof vented version to keep your feet cool.
La Sportiva Nucleo High GTX
La Sportiva’s Nucleo High GTX hiking boots were designed to increase breathability throughout. A Gor-Tex Surround liner allows airflow through the top of the boot, as well as the sides and bottom of the footbed. It also boasts Nano-Cell Technology, which is a web-like mesh found on the sides of the boot.
Weighing in at 2lbs 1.6oz, it is hard to believe they were able to get away with the large swathes of leather throughout that gives these hiking boots notable foot protection against some of the most rugged terrain. The only downside would be the narrowness of the footbed. These boots will not work well for men or women that generally wear wider styles.
Scarpa Zodiac Plus GTX
The Scarpa Zodiac Plus GTX brings heavyweight hiking boot quality to the lightweight category. These supportive, durable, lightweight hiking boots are made to handle heavy loads for multiple days of backpacking, without the added strain of bulky boots wearing you down. The mid-ankle height gives you excellent stability, while the PU and EVA midsole blend combines the phenomenal shock absorption of the PU with the cushy quality of EVA.
There are not many other hiking boots that offer this blended option. Also, their choice of a suede upper rather than leather gives these boots a boost in the breathability department – surprisingly, without sacrificing the waterproof abilities. It’s a great boot for those more skewed towards mountaineering and scrambling.
Vasque Talus Trek Mid UltraDry
If you are planning on setting out on exceptionally rocky and wet terrain, look no further than the Vasque Talus Trek Mid UltraDry hiking boots. Designed specifically for environments like the Appalachian Trail, these boots hold up through mud, rain, rocks, and snow.
They are slightly heavier than the Salomon X Ultra’s, weighing in at 2lbs 8oz, but still, haven’t fully tipped into the midweight category. The added weight comes from the comfortable leather exterior, and rugged foot protection, which we think are definitely worth the trade. These boots come in a variety of colors depending on your style preference.
Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX
While the Salomon Quest 4D hiking boots toe the line between midweight and lightweight at 2lbs 13.8oz, they make up for it in aggressive quality. These boots are the whole package, with an extremely rugged outsole that can help you glide through any environment, a flexible platform for improved comfort, and top of the line performance fit.
Salomon Quest 4d boots can take you from your day-hike to your next big backwoods adventure with ease, making them great for every style and experience level.
Hoka One One Kaha
If you love to hike but your body and feet are sensitive to rough terrain, the Hoka One One Kaha hiking boots have your back. With extra plush soles and rocker bottoms, these boots will make you feel like you are walking on clouds as you glide along the trail.
While this maximalist approach may not be perfect for every hiker (the added padding can feel a little strange at first), they can give those with injuries or sensitivities the ability to get back out doing what they love most. However, that doesn’t mean that they skimp on the features. These boots feature the Vibram MegaGrip sole, eVent waterproof sock liner, and leather uppers that will keep you stylish, comfortable, and upright. The barely-there 1b 2oz overall weight doesn’t hurt either.
Best Men’s Sandals
If you’re going to spend some time at the beach you’re going to want a pair of sandals in your luggage. There are three great choices here that range from the beach to hiking to help with plantar fasciitis.
I’ve had Rainbow flip flops for almost eight years now.
In those eight years, I have only had two pairs of Rainbow flip flops, and I only had to replace the first pair because of theft on a bus in Thailand. In my opinion, these are the best brand of flip flops.
The sandals are made with premium leather, nylon threads, and are triple glued for optimal durability. Perhaps what makes these so great is the high arch in the midsole, this allows me to wear the sandals all day.
Teva Terra Fi-4
Teva owns a well-deserved reputation for producing some of the most rugged hiking sandals in the business, and the Terra Fi-4 is an excellent example. Constructed as a classic open-toe sandal, this footwear hides a few important tricks under the hood to make it a powerhouse on the trail.
The outsole features Teva’s ‘Spider Original’ rubber which provides reliable and long-lasting traction in nearly every environment. The sole itself is cushioned with Teva’s ‘Shoc Pad’, giving superb heel cushioning for those long days on the trail. Durable and quick-drying polyester webbing and odor protection round off the ensemble for an excellent light hiking sandal.
Tasha and I just got our hands on our first pair of Wiivv sandals and they are a life changer. If you love the convenience and freedom of flip flops but hate how they make your body feel, these are perfect for you. Every pair of Wiivv sandals are made custom for your exact feet to give you the most comfortable fit possible.
The first step is to visit their website and choose from a wide range of colors and designs after your purchase you can download their app to take photos of your feet. This essentially maps your whole foot and the photos get automatically sent to Wiivv. From there they create a 3D-printable file unique to each individual foot. It’s great for those who suffer from plantar fasciitis.
Bedrock Cairn Adventure
Weight: 16 oz.
Material: Polyester/Nylon, Vibram Sole
Pros: Super Comfortable, Made For Running, Lightweight, Vibram Sole
Cons: Style, More For Athletic Use
If you just can’t give up on that flip flop feel but want the added stability and support of an outdoor sandal, look no further than the Bedrock Cairn. The thong-like design with ankle strap gives you that great, barely-there feel, while the Vibram outsole is tacky enough to climb mountains.
Their comprehensive adjustment system means the sandals are custom secured to your foot, and the basic construction relieves you of any pressure points. However, because of the strap construction, these are recommended for hiking in strenuous terrain, but they are stylish enough for urban adventuring and durable enough for long day hikes.
Weight: 1 lb.
Material: Cork Footbed, EVA Footbed, Rubber Sole
Pros: Comfort, Support, Thick Rubber Sole
Cons: Not For Everyone, Hippie Look,
Birkenstocks have long been associated with hippy culture and free-living ideology, so naturally, they would make phenomenal sandals for travel! However, Birkenstock Arizonas is much more than a name. They feature the patented cork footbed that contours to your foot, giving you amazing arch support and comfort.
This footbed also gives them an excellent shock absorption quality that your joints will thank you for. Keep in mind though that these women’s travel sandals are lined with suede, which means they are best suited for dry urban environments. Also, the cork footbed absorbs smells, so if you are prone to stinky, sweaty feet, these may not be the best choice for you.
I find Birkenstocks to look goofy on my feet, but they are super comfortable and plenty of people love them for a reason.
Men’s Insoles For Travel
If you have weak arches or problematic feet a pair of insoles can help make any pair of shoes work for you.
The sandals are listed above, but the same tech can be used to create a pair of insoles custom molded to your feet. Wiivv used images of your feet to custom map your feet and then ship you specialty insoles to your home.
We love our insoles and use them in our hiking boots as we cover a lot of miles in them. Of course, you can pull them out of shoes and swap them around as you need them.
This is a great affordable option for insoles if you have mild foot pain. I don’t know if I’d recommend them for someone with plantar fasciitis. They don’t operate like those cheap gel insets you find at the drug store but focus on distributing your weight across your feet properly.
The result is better comfort, foot health, and even back health in the long run. The Superfeet Green is by far the most popular option. The only negative of Superfeet is. They may not be robust enough as they do not custom mold to your feet like Sole or Wiivv.v.
Soles are a cross between Superfeet and Wiivv as they are affordable and custom mold to your feet. Instead of a custom mapping, they are heat molded which you do at home. We’ve used their sandals, and they are some of the most comfortable sandals we’ve ever worn.
What to Consider When Buying Travel Shoes
As you undoubtedly already know, matching your shoe choice to your destination is crucial. You wouldn’t take a stylish pair of sandals to Iceland in the winter any more than you would take a pair of clunky hiking boots for a trip to Paris. Your first step is therefore very simple: do some research. Where are you going? What weather are you expecting; hot or cold, wet or dry?
Once you’ve got your destination sorted, it’s time to add some forethought on what you’re planning to do. Are you looking to spend your trip pounding the pavement in a city as you visit the sights and local eateries? Or are you perhaps hoping to jump out to the mountain and get some intense trail runs and hikes under your belt? Or perhaps you’re right in the middle, with a healthy balance of city and nature. In any case, your activities will correlate directly with the performance of your travel shoes.
Performance correlates heavily to your destination research. Once you’ve selected your destination and the activities that you’re looking to do, take a very close look at the overall performance of the shoes that you are considering.
This means delving into the shoe specifics. Are they waterproof? What’s the upper made out of and how long will it last? Is the sole durable enough for what you’re planning to do? What’s the comfort rating? Will your feet be screaming after spending all day in these shoes?
We’ve tried to answer many of these questions with our forthcoming shoe descriptions. But always remember to consider exactly what you’re planning to do with these shoes. Out on the mountains 90% of the time? Then high-performance is definitely the way to go. On the other hand, if you’ll be spending most of your time enjoying the city, then you’ll probably spend some more time thinking about design.
Although a non-issue in most cases, design and appearance can play a monumental role in travel situations. Most seasoned travelers, this writer included, blanch at the thought of being pegged as a tourist the moment they step off the plane.
Being marked as a tourist can almost immediately open the floodgates to being targeted by scammers, inflated cab prices, and petty thievery in some cases. We know that your favorite running shoes are incredibly comfortable, but rest assured, nearly everyone and their dog will know that you’re a tourist as soon as you leave North America. If this concerns you, then take the time to consider what the locals are wearing and factor that into your decision-making process.
Shoes get dirty, plain and simple. No matter where we wear them or what we do, they will eventually get soiled. However, if you’re on a trip and have condensed your standard top three pairs of shoes down to one travel pair, then your travel shoes will get dirty even faster.
It’s therefore suggested that you give some thought to how you’re going to keep those shoes clean on the go. Shoes that just need a little brush down, or perhaps the occasional rinse, are preferred. Those that require a special cleaning agent, or get gouged easily, or need in-depth preventative layers applied all the time, will be quick to rack up annoyance points.
How to Travel With Your Shoes
I always travel with shoes in a separate part of my luggage. I don’t want the dust and dirt from the street to get on my clothes. If I’m traveling with a suitcase I will place my shoes in either a reusable bag or a packing cube and place them sole up at the bottom of my bag. My travel shoes never go next to my best outfits, just in case they do happen to get dirt everywhere. See more of our packing hacks here.
If I am on a backpacking trip I will still wrap my shoes in a reusable bag and place them at the bottom of the backpack. If they are travel flip-flops or rugged tennis shoes I will either wrap them by their shoelaces on the outside of the bag or place them on the side holders. Just watch out for theft if you leave your bag!
There are always at least two pairs of shoes in my bag, but sometimes more depending on where I am traveling and the season.
- Sneakers: For everyday use and exploring.
- Casual Shoe: I use this in the form of a dress shoe or nice leather boot.
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