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The 15 Best Packable Running Shoes for Travel

Saucony Men’s Liteform Miles Running Shoe

These are amazing shoes that are comfortable on the feet. They have memory foam in the soles that make running and walking a lot more tolerable. Light and breathable, the shoes provide a snug fit without being tight.

This running shoe has perhaps the most flexible outsole you’ll find. Made out of Triflex rubber compound, it yields benefits such as good traction and ground contact. The overlay, meanwhile, is designed to reduce wear and tear and prolong the shoe’s usability.

This running shoe is ultra-lightweight, so you will hardly notice it on your feet. The upper mesh is breathable and offers lots of airflow. This is an excellent running shoe to have if you live in a generally warm and dry climate.

Purchase

Nike Odyssey React Flyknit 2 Men’s Running Shoe

This shoe offers a flyknit and synthetic rubber that is flexible, breathable, and lightweight. The midsole, meanwhile, offers synthetic material for superior support and durability. And because it comes from one of the revered brands in athletic wear, you can be assured of the quality of this running shoe.

The main difference of the React 2 from its predecessor is the flyknit upper. Form fitting, the upper stretches enough to fit the foot. It holds the foot securely while offering superior breathability.

The midsole is practically the same with plastic support for a firm and responsive platform. There is also extra rubber on the outsole designed to reduce strain on the feet and joints. The shoe is very lightweight as well.

Purchase

adidas Pureboost Go Shoes Men’s

This is a versatile shoe that you can use for running, walking, or even while strolling around the park. Comfortable and well-cushioned, the adidas Pureboost offers superior responsiveness. Its modern look may appeal more to the younger generation, but you won’t go wrong with this shoe coming from the brand with three stripes.

The Pureboost Go features adidas’ Boost midsole designed to provide superior responsiveness. The midsole is noticeably wider compared to other running shoes from the brand, and it comes in handy when walking or running around busy areas.

The upper is made of flyknit material and offers superior breathability. Meanwhile, there are stitch reinforcements that can be found in the midfoot upper for significant support to the foot. It also offers a snug fit. This shoe is lightweight at around 10 ounces.

This shoe has a minimalistic modern look that makes it very versatile. You can use it for your daily runs or for a stroll in the mall.

Purchase

Allbirds Wool Runners

Many runners have dubbed the Allbirds Wool Runners to be the most comfortable pair of running shoes around. Allbirds has only been operating for less than three years, but it has made a mark with these comfy and lightweight shoes.

The shoes are made of wool. To say that the shoes are super comfortable to wear would be an understatement. The insoles are soft that you won’t have to wear socks. The wool is also designed to reduce odor and wick in moisture.

These shoes are lightweight, too. To give you a better appreciation of how much these shoes weigh, each shoe is about .75 pound less than a Converse Low Top. This makes the Allbirds Wool Runners an excellent walking shoe too.

Purchase

Xero Shoes Prio Running

Xero is a brand that made a name for itself in the production of huaraches and sandals. The Prio is thus the first performance running shoe of Xero and is marketed toward both hardcore and casual runners.

These running shoes are ideal for travel as you can pack it to the size of a baseball. It features a removable insole, giving users the option to run more barefoot. The shoe is lightweight at 9.3 ounces without the insole, making it more travel-friendly.

It is also made of vegan-friendly materials, including a nylon mesh and a couple of layers made of matte faux-leather, which is remarkably durable. It also features an inverted V strap, which is adjustable and lets users lock down the shoe for a snug fit.

Purchase

New Balance Minimus 10V1 Trail

New Balance is one of the more reputable makers of running shoes. The Minimus 10V1 is a pair of trail shoes with a sleek and thin design that is a marked departure from the neon colors of many trainers. It is comfortable to wear with antimicrobial treatment to reduce bad odors.

This shoe is arguably the best for light trail running. It has a midfoot wrap that keeps the foot in place while its foam provides superior lightweight support. The outsole has flex grooves that are strategically placed for a natural run. The upper material, meanwhile, gives it a look that is distinct from its predecessor.

Purchase

Hoka One One Hupana Wool

This shoe is a good everyday running shoe that you’ll find comfortable to wear all day long. It has a design that is a bit muted compared to other Hoka One One shoes.

The word Hupana means ‘spring back’ in Maori. Its outsole and midsole are made of RMAT material that comes from rubber EVA foam and noted for its durability and responsiveness. It is lightweight, too, at around 9 ounces.

This shoe feels smooth and responsive. It sustains a comfortable level of cushioning. The wool, meanwhile, naturally wicks moisture, and it provides antimicrobial properties to minimize foot odors.

Purchase

New Balance 890V7

If you are serious about your workouts, then the New Balance 890V7 should be on your shortlist.

The 890V7 looks good and stylish, but wait until you wear them. Lightweight but offering superior protection, it can be an excellent choice for daily training. It features a flexible outsole and featherweight midsole for a clean and fast transition. The result is a shoe that is very responsive to any pace.

This shoe features a single-layer knit fabric in the upper part. It is breathable and drains well. It wicks moisture while providing enough wiggle room for the feet.

Purchase

Altra Escalante Racer 19

The Altra Escalante is a basic version of the Escalante road shoe featuring a firm midsole and a lightweight knit mesh upper. It is appropriate for people who are training for a marathon. Lightweight, comfortable, and durable, this is one of the best packable running shoes for travel.

The Altra Escalante Racer is around 8 ounces light, which makes it ideal for travel. It has a firm and thin midsole that gives responsive cushioning. Built into the midsole and outsole are grooves that are designed to let the feet flex naturally.

The outsole, meanwhile, is made of rubber that holds up well. It provides superior grip even when one is running on wet pavement. This is the type of shoe you will want to have when running on rainy days.

Purchase

Vivobarefoot Primus Trail FG

This is the shoe you will appreciate wearing when hitting the trails. Weighing 9.7 ounces, it is lightweight and thus a good pair to have when travelling. The mesh is breathable and delivers superior comfort. Its sole is designed to provide ample traction on rocky trails.

It also has a high abrasion rubber outsole that can handle wet ground and dry surfaces. The insole is around 3mm thick and should protect your feet well. It is also removable, so you can wear the shoe barefoot. The running shoes are tightened by Mountain Laces that have a toggle for adjusting the fit.

Purchase

APL Techloom Phantom

Athletic Propulsion Labs (APL) may be a relatively new brand in the athletic footwear industry, but its Techloom Phantom is a solid choice for a pair of running shoes. It is a low-cut running shoe that features the brand’s 3D Stretch TechLoom technology. Designed to move well with your feet, the Techloom Phantom is a good pair to have in your bag as they will let you take a quick run wherever you may be.

The Phantom’s outsole is made of a proprietary material called Propelium that cushions the heel well so that you can run longer. Its tread pattern or grip sole is designed to provide superior traction. The midsole, meanwhile, gives superior comfort while maintaining the structural integrity of the shoe. The shoe is also designed with Techloom knit, which makes it breathable and comfortable to wear.

Purchase

Reebok Fast Flexweave

The Reebok Fast Flexweave has a sleek look, but make no mistake about it— it offers a good fit and is very comfortable. Lightweight and flexible, it offers superior arch support. This pair of shoes are ideal for everyday walking or working out in the gym.

Its midsole is made of 3-D foam that provides superior and precise cushioning. You’ll love how stable and flexible you will be on this shoe. The low-cut heel design, meanwhile, facilitates quick transitions. The upper is breathable and stretchable as well. Weighing around 8 ounces, this shoe is light and easy to carry around.

Purchase

New Balance Fresh Foam Lazr V2 HypoKnit

Under 10 ounces and $100, the Fresh Foam Lazr from New Balance is a definite steal. It has a sleek upper which is made from Hydroknit that tightens around parts of the feet requiring added support.

The outsole of the Lazr V2 HypoKnit is designed to provide stability and flexibility to the wearer. The midsole is data-inspired and aims to provide superior support. Meanwhile, the multi-layered upper gives excellent cushion.

The Lazr V2 Hypoknit weighs in at 9.7 ounces (size 10 for men), which makes it a good choice for people who are always on the go.

Purchase

Under Armour SpeedForm Slingshot 2

Affordable, good-looking, and versatile, the SpeedForm Slingshot 2 from Under Armour is another excellent option for runners who want a travel-friendly pair of running shoes. It features a modern lacing system that secures underneath the midsole for a secure fit. It works well with the external heel counter of the shoe for a good lockdown.

Like its predecessor, the Slingshot 2 is constructed with Under Armour’s SpeedForm technology. This can give users the confidence to run on any terrain. The upper of the shoe is breathable while the outsole wraps the foot for a snug fit.

Purchase

Puma Hybrid NX Shoes

Last but not least is this Puma shoe, which is very lightweight yet provides enough cushion for running. Its midsole has good cushioning and high rebound for hitting the track. It has foam and beads in the heel to provide a soft landing spot.

The upper is semi-knitted and breathable. It also has a flexible structure, which makes packing of the shoe even easier. The lacing system is customizable and comes with a short tongue. The outsole is made of 100% rubber and provides maximum grip.

Purchase

The Right Packable Running Shoes

In choosing running shoes for travel, the first thing to consider is the ‘packability’ of the footwear. This may refer to the weight of the shoes. You obviously don’t want shoes that are heavy, as this can add up to the weight of your luggage. Shoes that are less than 10 ounces are considered lightweight.

You will also have to take into consideration the size of the shoes. It should not take up too much space in your bag. Collapsible shoes are ideal as you can squeeze them into your bag and let you pack other essential items.

The versatility of the shoes may also affect your buying decision. Running shoes that can also serve you well for a trip to the mall are always a great choice. Finding running shoes that can work well with your tux may be far-fetched but try to look for footwear that you can wear for a better part of your trip.

The packability of the shoes is just half of the story. There are other factors that can come into play when choosing running shoes for travel. One is the performance of the shoes. When we say performance, we refer to how well the kicks address your needs. Whether it is for training for an upcoming marathon or simply continuing your cardio workout program, think of your fitness goals and how well-suited the running shoe you have in mind is in achieving that objective.

Of course, you should also pay attention to the other parts of the shoe, like the midsole or the foam material between the upper and outsole. This is the part of the shoe that cushions the feet from impact forces. Look for a midsole that is neither too firm nor too soft. The outsole is the part of the shoe that comes in contact with the ground. Often made of rubber, it should be durable aside from providing traction without adding extra weight. There’s also the upper, or the part of the shoe that covers the entire foot. Look for a shoe with an upper that is durable and breathable.

The 12 Best Packable Running Shoes For Travel

No matter where you are on the planet, if you’re a running fiend, you’re not going to let different surroundings and a different time zone hold you back from getting your miles in. For those dedicated to the sport, running is a lifestyle. However, it can be difficult to stuff your favorite running shoes in your luggage, as footwear can take up plenty of real estate.

There’s only so much space in your luggage and carry-on. So it’s only logical to invest in a pair of travel running shoes, allowing you to pack light and train when you’re away from your headquarters. To make your search easier, we’ve scanned the web for the best packable running shoes available. Take a look at our carefully-curated list and grab a travel-friendly pair to practice your run technique anywhere.

Primer

Looking for the Perfect Packable Pair

Before we jump into the list, let’s briefly cover what you should be looking for when searching for packable running shoes. First, the shoes should be travel-friendly–meaning they’re lightweight, semi-collapsible, and have flexible midsoles. If they’re made with plenty of mesh, you might have a winner, as this material is very lightweight and packs well. Next, you want to make sure the shoes are comfortable on your feet and provide ample protection when you run. Lastly, you’ll want a pair of running shoes that are durable so they can survive plenty of trips and tons of run sessions. Abrasion-resistant, shock-absorbing footwear is always a plus.

Saucony Lifeform Miles

Equipped with FORM2U memory foam cushions for unrivaled comfort, Saucony’s Lifeform Miles shoes help ease the strain on your feet when you run. They also have mesh uppers for breathability, Tri-Flex outsoles for superior ground contact, and molded EVA midsoles to keep your feet fresh throughout your route. These shoes are pliable enough to pack in your duffel bag for a weekend vacation or business trip.

Purchase: $64

Nike Odyssey React Flyknit 2

Combining synthetic material and lightweight Flyknit construction, these Nike running shoes provide a soft and springy ride. They have geometric outsole patterns to disperse impact evenly on each footstrike and foam molded collars for additional ankle support, reducing the potential for injury. The shoes are also lightweight and flexible, allowing you to pack them neatly away in your luggage.

Purchase: $79

Adidas Pureboost Go Shoes

Made with light, flexible knit uppers that adapt to your natural movement, the Pureboost Go Shoes are comfy sole protectors. They have flexible Stretchweb rubber outsoles and Boost cushioning for plenty of energy return. At around 10 oz, these shoes are flexible and lightweight for easy packing so you can sport them during your city runs when you’re out of town.

Purchase: $92

Allbirds Wool Runners

Ignore the quirky Allbirds commercials, as these superfine merino wool running shoes are lightweight and resilient for miles. They benefit from a proprietary low-density foam and amazing cushioning for friction control, as well as an S-curve tread array to support the anatomical flexibility of your feet for natural weight distribution. The shoes also boast a water-resistant, itch-free construction for unrivaled performance.

Purchase: $95

Xero Shoes Prio Running

The Xero Prio minimalist running shoes provide you with a natural fit and feel thanks to a wide toe box and 5.5 mm FeelTrue rubber soles. Their non-elevated heels and low-to-the-ground design allow for proper posture and balance while you run. And you can pack them down to the size of a baseball. These shoes are backed by a 5,000-mile sole warranty, in case you have any doubts about their quality.

Purchase: $95

New Balance Minimus 10v1 Trail

If you want packable running shoes for off-road adventures, the Minimus 10v1 Trail will fit your needs. With flexible synthetic and mesh materials along with Vibram outsoles with flex grooves, this footwear provides plenty of traction and comfort for rocky trails. It also has midfoot wraps to keep your feet in place no matter how bumpy the terrain gets and premium performance foam for lightweight support.

Purchase: $115

Hoka One One Hupana Wool

Providing you with a light and bouncy feel, the Hupana wool running shoes will keep your feet safe on all your running adventures. They’re made with rubberized foam midsoles, wool fleece uppers for sheer comfort, sized outsoles for reliable traction and precision with each footstrike. You’ll stay agile in this footwear while letting your feet breathe throughout your entire running session.

Purchase: $120

New Balance 890v7

According to New Balance, the 890v7 shoes are a must-have model for serious runners. Boasting responsive REVlite midsoles, gusseted tongues for a snug fit, and a minimalist design, these running shoes are perfect for hungry athletes looking to elevate their performance. Their midsoles are also 30% lighter than other foams with comparable performance, so they won’t weigh you down in your travel bag.

Purchase: $120

Altra Escalante Racer ’19

The Escalante Racer is Altra’s updated version of their Escalante with firmer, more breathable uppers and lighter heel counters for exceptional cornering. These running shoes are also packing Altra EGO midsoles, providing plenty of energy return, and grid-like grooves to allow your feet to flex for improved speed. For a natural feel, the shoes have Footpod Technology that maps the bones and tendons of your feet.

Purchase: $140

Vivobarefoot Primus Trail FG

Constructed with breathable recycled PET Mesh, the Primus Trail FG running shoes keep your feet cool during high-intensity workout sessions. They feature Firm Ground soles with low-profile lugs for ample traction on rocky terrain and trails. Ensuring you can run in unfavorable weather conditions, these water-resistant shoes have quick ran zones, 3mm lugs for multi-terrain traction, and lace toggles a snug fit.

Purchase: $156

APL Techloom Phantom

The APL Techloom Phantom shoes have four-way stretch uppers for extraordinary performance and a 3D grid pattern for comprehensive support. For all-day comfort, they have a low-cut silhouette, neoprene tongues with integrated collars, and midsoles developed for direct ground contact. These running shoes also use Propelium technology to maximize energy generation throughout your run. And they’re inspired by the shape of a feather, incorporating natural motion via flex grooves to react to each movement you make.

Purchase: $165

Reebok Fast Flexweave

Each stride you take with the Reebok Fast Flexweave shoes is supported by independent nodes, providing you with multi-directional support. They feature innovative Flexwevae figure-eight woven uppers for lightweight, targeted support, allowing you to move naturally whether you’re crushing your mile time outdoors or clocking in miles on a treadmill. And since they’re highly flexible, you can stuff them in your luggage with ease.

Purchase: $172

12 Best Rugged Duffel Bags For Travel

Now that you have your packable running shoes, it’s time to get a durable bag to carry them. Check out our picks for the best rugged duffel bags for travel and prepare for your future weekend adventures.

5 Favorite Travel-Friendly Athletic Shoes

I know many business travelers that enjoy working out after they’ve finished a day at the office. Some enjoy running the streets as a way to explore a new city, while others prefer the convenience of the hotel gym. Either way, this Virtuoso blog article piqued my interest, because it reviews travel-friendly athletic shoes that pair “packability” with performance. Here’s what they recommend.

Top athletic shoes for business travelers

1. Hoka One One Hupana

Hoka uses midsoles that are thicker than most other brands. Though the Hoka One One Hupana appears bulky, it’s one of the lightest shoes on this page, and its mesh upper folds to pack flat. It is Virtuoso’s pick for wider feet. $115.

Hoka One One Hupana

2. Nike Metcon 3 DSX

With its flat, stable outsole and firm heel, the Nike’s Metcon 3 DSX is tailored for multisport gym workouts. The knit upper collapses, saving room in travel bags. It also eliminates pressure points by fitting against the top of your feet. $160.

Nike Metcon 3 DSX

3. New Balance 1500 v3

The ultralight New Balance 1500 v3 provides maximum compressibility, but with a more responsive cushion. It’s perfect for the outdoor runner, gripping well on gravel and wet surfaces. The wide heel and roomier forefoot offer excellent stability. $110.

New Balance 1500 v3

4. Addidas Terrex Agravic Speed

Though considered a trail runner, the Adidas Terrex Agravic Speed it works well compacts well and provides superb traction and support. Its entire upper is constructed of a sock-like mesh for lightweight, easy traveling. $120.

Addidas Terrex Agravic Speed

5. Salomon’s S-Lab Sense 5 Ultra

Salomon’s S-Lab Sense 5 Ultra is known for being lightweight. Packing down to basically nothing, it is ideal for treadmills and activities that don’t require a lot of stability correction. It also has adjustable elastic cords instead of laces, always giving you the perfect fit. $180.

Salomon’s S-Lab Sense 5 Ultra

What kind of work out do you look for while traveling? Let us know in the comments below.

Read next:

  • Sighted: a gym in an airport
  • Tips for staying in shape while traveling

Christopherson Business Travel manages travel for other companies. Our advanced technology, consultative account management, and around the clock service, provides time for our clients to focus on their passions. Learn more about our approach.

The 10 Best Travel Running Shoes of 2019

There are two types of packers in the world: those that throw everything they own into a suitcase, and those that carefully stuff each packing cube with the order demanded by a drill instructor. And let’s be honest, the art of perfect packing involves planning, especially when you’re trying to pack light.

One of the trickiest questions is “How do I leave enough room for an extra pair of sneakers so I can keep training and working out while I’m traveling?” Luckily, the fitness industry has come a long way from the bulky, over-supportive styles of running shoes past. Now it’s easy to find sneakers that look good, feel great and keep your feet happy all day long. They’re a snap to pack or literally wear right onto the plane. Whether you’re running around Lady Bird Lake or walking around the Louvre, these ten styles deliver performance and style in equal measure

Nike Epic React Flyknit 2

These lightweight yet plush Nike running sneakers are a smart choice for runners looking to log up to 10 miles. They work double duty when you’re flying out to a race and need a pair of shoes that will keep your legs feeling good before your shakeout run — and all day at the expo.

From the first time we laid eyes on the Hoka One One Hupana Wool runners we couldn’t help but think of the Allbirds Wool Runners, which are great weekend sneakers; we don’t want to run in them for fear of ruining the exterior, plus there’s no support in the sidewalls — but they can handle full days on your feet. The Hupana is a great sneaker for someone looking for a bit of support and they are easy to scrunch down so there’s plenty of added space for the extra wine bottle or rolled-up map you’re bringing home in your suitcase.

New Balance Fresh Foam Lazr V2 HypoKnit

At just $100, the second version of the Fresh Foam Lazr is a steal. These shoes are under 10 ounces, and the sleek upper, made from Hydroknit, is tighter around certain parts of your feet where you might need added support (like under the toes and along the interior and exterior of the shoe for over- or under-pronators). A pillow-like tongue ties it all together.

Under Armour SpeedForm Slingshot 2

The Under Armour SpeedForm is another pair of runners that are affordable and good-looking. Offered in grey or black, these minimalist sneakers are ideal for a Cherry Blossom 5K and the whirlwind city tour that happens after the run. The knit fabric will stretch if your feet swell, so you don’t have to worry about all the time you spend standing.

APL TechLoom Pro

These single-color sneakers work for shorter distances, yet are also simple enough to match every outfit you pack — there are more than a dozen different colors. And did I mention they’re lightweight? We love these low-profile sneakers for gym days as well.

It’s hard to find all black sneakers with a matching black sole, but these Adidas Pureboost Go shoes fit the bill. With Boost foam underfoot and a stretchy upper, these sneakers can handle anything city exploring throws at you. At 10.3 ounces, they’re a bit heavier than others on this list, but there’s a reason the Adidas Ultraboost style sells out so quickly — the responsive and soft foam helps return energy to your body so your feet won’t be as tired at the end of the day.

Puma Hybrid NX Shoes

The breathable sock-like upper in Puma’s Hybrid sneakers features plenty of support thanks to an external heel cup and two types of foam underfoot. The blended shoe comes in five different colors. While the heel cup won’t fold down, the rest of the sneaker will collapse and squish together so a pair could fit in your briefcase, if needed.

Reebok Fast Tempo Flexweave

Imagine all the technology in the Reebok Floatride run, just at a lower price, with a denser (read: more comfortable and firm) midsole. This gym and running shoe is the ideal blend of performance and stretch that’s built to last, no matter how many gyms you visit.

Asics HyperGel-Kenzen

These Asics sneakers have no laces, but don’t let that dissuade you from taking them out for a quick jaunt. The sock-like construction is tight around your feet; buy half a size up so there’s some space for your toes to breathe.

Nike Free RN 5.0 2019

The minimalist look and feel of the Nike Free is a cornerstone of what makes these lightweight sneakers instantly recognizable. The updated 2019 version is 26 percent more flexible than previous versions, and the upper is 100 percent different. We like to imagine what shoes would look like if we were going to space — and this is kinda what we picture.

Best Gym Shoes

Whether you hit the CrossFit Box or lift weights at the gym, there’s a gym sneaker in here for you. Read the Story

Meg Lappe

Meg Lappe is Gear Patrol’s Editorial Coordinator, handling strategy across our digital, print, video and social teams. She can typically be found running around.

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Best Travel Shoes — Fashionable & Comfortable Shoes for Traveling

Picking the correct travel shoes is one of the most important (and most frustrating) parts of traveling to Europe. We still struggle with it. But don’t worry, in this guide we’ll help you choose the perfect shoes for traveling.

We’ve also included our travel footwear recommendations for both women and men.

Quick Tips For Picking Comfortable Shoes For Travel

Susan in her Ecco and New Balance shoes James rocking his New Balance shoes

Between living in NYC and spending a lot of time exploring Europe, we know first-hand that nice shoes will make traveling much more enjoyable. We’ll easily walk 5-10 miles a day when we’re visiting a city — even spending a few hours at a museum can be killer on your feet.

So treat your feet well.

Here are a few things to consider when evaluating your shoes:

  1. Comfort Beats Fashion (Always): It doesn’t matter how cute your shoes are — if they’re uncomfortable, they’re staying at home. One bad blister or aching feet can truly ruin your day.
  2. Quality Socks: People spend a lot of money on shoes but then throw on a pair of cheap socks — we’ve found that quality socks are just as important as the shoes.
    • Quality socks will help prevent blisters, stop odor, and keep your feet comfortable. For more information about socks, be sure to read about our favorite socks for travel.
  3. Support & Insoles: Every foot is different so we’ve found that adding a nice pair of insoles can make shoes, flats, and boots much more comfortable.
  4. Match Shoes To Destination: Matching shoes to your destination is an important consideration — especially when you’re traveling in rainy, snowy, or non-city destinations.
    1. For example — A pair of flats isn’t appropriate for trekking through Iceland, and a pair of heavy-duty mountaineering boots probably is overkill for walking the streets of Paris.
  5. Break In Your Shoes: BREAK IN YOUR SHOES! A lot of people forget this critical step because even the most comfortable shoes can cause blisters during the first couple wearings. We recommend wearing your shoes for a couple weeks before your trip.
  6. Versatile Shoes: Depending on your travel style, you’ll want to limit the number of shoes you bring. We rarely travel with more than two pairs so make sure your shoes look good in a variety of settings.

Tips for Buying Shoes Online

Buying shoes online can be a bit tricky since all brands seem to fit a little differently. We almost exclusively order our shoes from Zappos. They give you get free delivery (which is often one or two day shipping) and free returns.

If you’re not sure which size to buy, we suggest buying two sizes and then returning the pair that doesn’t fit. Zappos gives you a pre-paid return label and will refund your money within about 7 days — they make the process super easy.

The Best Travel Shoes By Category

To make things easier, we’ve divided this guide into sneakers, walking shoes, boots, sandals, flats, etc. — each section has footwear recommendations for both men and women. Feel free to jump around as needed.

  • The Best Sporty Casual Travel Sneakers
  • The Best Athletic Walking Shoes
  • The Best Waterproof Hiking and Trekking Travel Shoes
  • The Best Hiking Boots For Travel
  • The Best Casual Boots For Travel
  • The Best Flats For Travel
  • The Best Travel Sandals
  • The Best Insoles
  • The Best Travel Shoe Brands

The Best Sporty Casual Sneakers For Travel

Yes, you can wear sneakers when you travel without looking like a “tourist”. In fact, a cool-looking pair of sneakers is our preferred travel shoe in most cases. Luckily, there are a ton of fashionable options available these days but here are a few of our favorites.

Note: Some of the more “minimalist” shoes might benefit from insoles.

Women’s Casual Sneakers

Ecco also makes a lot of cute, sturdy, & comfortable sneakers. Susan has a pair of the Soft VII shoes that’s she’s worn all over NYC and Europe.

We were recently in Madrid and we saw a ton of European men and women wearing Adidas Superstars. They were seriously everywhere. Zappos has multiple styles and colors — plus they’re fairly affordable.

We’ve also noticed a huge rise in the popularity of New Balance shoes throughout Europe — we’ve seen everything from neutral to super bright colors. We’ve loved New Balance shoes for a long time so we’re happy they’re popular in Europe as well. Check out Zappos to see the various color options (there are a lot!).

As of course there is Nike — which are always a popular shoe choice for being fashionable and comfortable.

BENSIMON sneakers are a very popular and fashionable casual sneaker in France. You’ll see tons of trendy Parisians wearing them during the summer. They are available in dozens of colors and styles, but it can be a little difficult finding the full range of styles and colors in the US.

We don’t think you can have them shipped outside France from their website, but there are a few retailers who carry them in the US.

However, Superga and Keds both make shoes in a very similar style (pictured above) — so they’re a great alternative that’s also easy to find.

Sperry Top-Siders look great with shorts, capris, skirts, and jeans, making them super versatile. They are a good option for the spring or summer.

Puma produces a number of sporty, yet fashionable, sneakers that are great for travel. Their styles are always changing, so you’ll want to check out all the different styles they have on Zappos.

Converse Chuck Taylor’s are ultra trendy in Europe right now and they make a cheap and shabby chic option. The Chucks 2 have good arch support but the normal Chucks are known for being pretty flat.

If you don’t like Chuck Taylor’s, there are many other similar style shoes available — for example, Onitsuka Tiger by Asics and Vans.

Everyone knows about TOMS shoes, and they are a great shoe for travel because they are comfortable, lightweight, and cute. These are a great option for urban travel during the spring and summer. They’re not the most rugged shoes so they’re better suited for shorter periods of wear.

We’re really digging Allbirds shoes for travel. They’re sneakers but they’re made of wool — which sounds kind of weird but it actually works well. These shoes are super comfortable and you can wear them without socks (one of the benefits of wool is odor prevention). And they are crazy lightweight so they’re easy to pack away. They come in multiple colors and cost $95. Available via Allbirds.

Allbirds also has a new line called Tree Runners which are made of eucalyptus pulp instead of wool so they’re a bit breezier than the Wool Runners.

Read our Allbirds Review if you want more information.

Men’s Casual Sneakers

Just about every athletic shoe brand has a line of casual sneakers — especially leather shoes which look good during the day and at night. Check out Nike, New Balance, Puma, Adidas, and Creative Recreation.

We also seen multiple Europeans wearing Adidas Ultra Boost — these seem to be the “it” shoes right now. A ton of people sing the praises of Adidas Ultra Boost for being the most comfortable shoes they’ve even worn.

We’re also loving their classic Adidas Originals and Superstar sneakers as they’ll never go out of style.

Allbirds Wool Runners Allbirds Tree Runners

We’re really digging Allbirds shoes for travel. They’re sneakers but they’re made of wool — which sounds kind of weird but it actually works well. These shoes are super comfortable and you can wear them without socks (one of the benefits of wool is odor prevention). And they are crazy lightweight so they’re easy to pack away. They come in multiple colors and cost $95. Available via Allbirds.

Allbirds also has a new line called Tree Runners which are made of eucalyptus pulp instead of wool so they’re a bit breezier than the Wool Runners.

We’ve written a more in-depth Allbirds Review if you want learn more.

New Balance is another very great brand that you’ll see all over Europe. We’re been wearing them for years so it’s nice to see Europeans discovering them as well.

We’re big fans of the New Balance Classics because they have great retro style, but still offer the comfort of a running shoe. I’ve seen similar shoes in many stores and boutiques in Paris and Barcelona so you’ll see plenty Europeans wearing these.

Athletic Walking & Running Shoes For Travel

Full-on athletic running/walking shoes will likely be the most comfortable option for exploring the streets of Europe. These might not be the most fashionable option but we’ve started noticing a lot more Europeans starting to wear them.

Women’s Athletic Shoes

One of the best-rated running shoes ais the Brooks Ghost. These will not win any points for fashion, but they will keep your feet happy. In fact, all Brooks shoes get excellent comfort ratings.

If you’re looking for a comfortable athletic shoe that has a bit of a lower profile, check out the Nike Flex, Nike Free, New Balance Arishi and the Adidas Running and Adidas Originals series. All of these are sporty and fashionable.

Men’s Athletic Shoes

When it comes to nice-looking athletic shoes, Nike is hard to beat. We recommend the Nike Air Pegasus, Nike Flex, Nike Air Max, and the Nike Free.

Brooks is known for making crazy comfortable shoes and their Ghosts are universally loved for their comfort.

Waterproof Trekking/Hiking Shoes For Travel

Trekking/hiking shoes look a bit like beefed-up athletic running shoes and they’re designed for long hikes. This style of hiking shoe is a popular choice for many travelers because they offer a lot of support, they are generally lightweight, and most are waterproof/weather resistant — which is a huge plus.

Unfortunately, it is pretty tough to find a “fashionable” pair, but these are probably your best all-around option if you travel during the snowy/rainy months or if you plan on spending a lot of time in the countryside.

NOTE: Weather resistant shoes (as opposed to “waterproof”) should be sufficient for most travelers.

Women’s Waterproof/Weather Resistant Hiking Shoes

Ok, these Fresh Foam Gobi V2 – Protect Pack from New Balance are technically “trail runners” but they’re highly water-resistant and nice looking. We could totally rock these in Europe.

Keen is another brand known for being comfortable. These Keen Presidio shoes get rave reviews for their mix of hiking shoe durability and sneaker looks. Plus, they are waterproof, so this is a good option if you want a rugged shoe that is suitable for city travel. I also like the Keen Utility Detroit and Keen Arroyo II because they get excellent reviews for comfort, but they do have a more utilitarian look.

Merrell is a great brand and well. Their Moab line of shoes and boots come in multiple styles — including many waterproof options. We also like the Merrell Siren Hex Q2 Waterproof, and the Merrell All Out Blaze 2 Waterproof. Merrell makes a ton of shoes so check out their page on Zappos to see them all.

Men’s Waterproof/Weather Resistant Hiking Shoes

We’ve always been big fans of New Balance. We think they make some of the most fashionable rugged and waterproof hiking shoes — so you won’t look out of place while exploring the city. The 910v3 GORE-TEX is a waterproof athletic trail running shoe that we are digging. We also like the Fresh Foam Gobi V2 – Protect Pack (which is technically only “water resistant” but it should handle rainy days without much issue).

These Nike Free RN Shield shoes are water resistant so they’re a nice option if you want sneakers that can worn in the rain but still look cool.

Merrell makes a wide range of comfortable hiking shoes, and many of them are waterproof — which is nice if you travel to rainy climates. The Merrell Moab Waterproof and the Moab Vent (a great summer option) get top marks for comfort and support. The Merrell Chameleon 4 is a low-profile option that is comfortable and sturdy but still looks decent in an urban environment.

Keen makes some of the most comfortable and durable hiking shoes. The Keen Austin is waterproof, supportive and it has good looks. The Keen Arroyo II, Targhee II, and the Keen Voyageur are three other comfortable options that are a bit more utilitarian.

Hiking Boots For Travel

Hiking boots will offer good support and will keep your feet comfortable on long walks, but they might be overkill for most city travel since they are heavy and bulky. Most travelers would be better off using lightweight hiking shoes but boots might be a good idea if you’re traveling in the winter or if you like the boot aesthetic.

Women’s Hiking Boots

The Vasque Sundowner GTX and the Danner Jag both combine old-school style and comfort.

These Columbia Newton Ridge Plus Waterproof Amped boots get a lot of love and they’re affordable.

Men’s Hiking Boots

Timberland White Ledge Mid Waterproof is a nice looking boot that will serve you well in the winter. The Merrell Moab Mid GORE-TEX® XCR is a little more “outdoorsy” but it gets good reviews for comfort. The Danner Jags and the Danner Mountain 600 are two classic hiking boots with old-school style.

The Adidas Terrex Free Hiker is a cross between a running shoe and a hiking boot. Loving all these new hybrids. We actually discovered these from an Instagram ad… and we might buy a pair (technology is scary!). Check them out on Zappos.

We’re digging these Teva Arrowood 2 Mid WP boots. They have sneaker styling and comfort but the functionality of waterproof boots. Check them out on Zappos.

Casual Boots For Travel

Casual boots are nice because they are more fashionable than sneakers/athletic shoes, but they are often still comfortable. We prefer a dark leather (since it will hide dirt stains well — especially in the winter), but suede can be perfectly fine in the summer.

Make sure you break-in your boots for 2-3 weeks before your trip since boots require a longer break-in period.

Women’s Casual Boots

The Clarks Desert Boots are a nice lightweight and fashionable option that work well for the summer and look great with skinny jeans. These are best suited for the summer since they’re not waterproof. I’d also recommend using an insole.

Chelsea boots are another great style of boot for travel because they are super easy to take off — which is great at airports. And they look cool, too. We think these Blunderstone BL585 and Frye Chelsea boots look great and they get good reviews, but there are plenty of other styles/brands available.

Blondo receives rave reviews for their boots — any many of them are waterproof so they’re great for rainy weather. They’re also fashionable if you’re trying to dress up your outfit. We’re digging their Villa Waterproof Bootie.

Men’s Casual Boots

Clarks Desert Boots have been a classic boot for over 40 years and they’re still just as cool as ever — plus they come in multiple colors. We like these Cole Haan Chukka boots and Timberland Davis Square Plain Toe Chukka because they’re both fashionable and comfortable. Borne also makes these slightly “dressy” Nigel Boots which are super comfortable.

Another nice travel boot is the Blundstone BL550. These leather boots are comfortable, stylish, and rugged. The BL550 doesn’t have laces, so they are super easy to put on/remove, which is incredibly nice if you’re going to be flying a lot. Blundstone makes a lot of different models, so I suggest searching for other styles.

Best Travel Flats

Flats are a great option for city travel because they are lightweight, comfortable, and can be casual or dressy. Black or brown is the most practical color choice. Many flats don’t provide a lot of support, so it is advisable to add an insole to help improve comfort.

Clarks is known for being well-made, comfortable, and cute. They have a ton of different styles and colors

Born makes a lot of cute and conformable flats. The Born Julianne is one of their most popular models because they look great, provide decent arch support, and come in multiple colors. Born also has many other styles of flats that come in cool metallic or snakeskin finishes.

If fashion is a top priority, these Cole Haan flats might be the perfect flat since they’re known for providing a lot of extra cushion. They have multiple colors available, but we would stick with the patent leather options.

Merrell is known for making great hiking shoes, but they do make a few more stylish flats.

Travel Sandals

Sandals are great in warm weather and there are multiple styles available — from dressy to sporty. Unsurprisingly, the “fancier” sandals tend to have less support than the sporty versions — so keep that in mind.

Chaco is known for making some of the best hiking sandals. You won’t find these on the runway, but if you want excellent support these might be your best bet — whether you’re doing off-road hiking or exploring Europe’s cobblestone streets.

It might sound strange, but Crocs actually makes a few pairs of nice looking sandals. The Crocs Sexi Flip is chic, minimalist, and comfortable and the Isabella T-Strap also gets a lot of love. Plus, they weigh just a few ounces so they will hardly add any weight to your bag.

Birkenstocks are the quintessential “comfortable” sandal. They make multiple models so look around to see if any look good to you.

Naot is another brand that’s famous for making super comfortable sandals.

Insoles for Travel

Insoles are a great way to make your shoes much more comfortable. Some of the best are from Superfeet, Sorbothane, Spenco, and Sole, but there are plenty of other brands.

The Best Travel Footwear Brands

Not seeing any shoes on this list that look interesting? Here’s a list of our favorite brand that are known for making excellent and comfortable shoes.

Mephisto

Mephisto Footwear

Mephisto Footwear: Known for their super comfortable flats, sandals and casual sneakers. They have footwear options for both men and women. See their full catalogue on Zappos.

Ecco

ECCO

ECCO: ECCO makes a range of high-quality and comfortable shoes, boots, sandals, sneakers, dress shoes for both men and women. Most of their shoes are leather so there are a lot of solid casual yet fashionable options. See their full catalogue on Zappos.

Clarks

Clarks

Clarks: Founded in 1825, Clarks is an English shoe brand that is know for making quality shoes, boots, and sandals. They became famous for their classic dessert boots (I own two pairs, myself) but they make a wide range of footwear options — especially casual leather sneaker, boots, and flats. See their full catalogue on Zappos.

Naot

Naot

Naot: Naot has made a name for themselves for their extremely comfortable sandals — which get tons of rave reviews. View their full catalogue on Zappos.

Superga

Superga

Superga: Based in Italy since 1913, Superga become famous for their classic low-profile and super sturdy sneakers that come in dozens of different colors. Check out their full catalogue on Zappos.

Born

Born

Born: Born is another brand that receives a lot of love for their comfort and craftsmanship. They make a wide range of footwear but they’re most known for their women’s flats and sandals. View their full catalogue on Zappos.

Blondo

Blondo

Blondo: Blondo’s biggest claim to fame is for their fashionable waterproof leather boots — which is something that’s actually fairly difficult to find. Take a a look at their full catalogue on Zappos.

Blundstone

Blundstone: Blundstone is known for making super comfortable and durable waterproof boots for both men and women. Check out their full catalogue on Zappos.

Keen

Keen

Keen: Keen has traditionally been an outdoors footwear company that made quality but kinda ugly footwear… but they’ve started to make more casual and stylish options (without losing their outdoorsy performance). View their full catalogue on Zappos.

Allbirds

Allbirds

Allbirds: Allbirds have exploded in popularity and they’ve been dubbed the “world’s most comfortable shoes.” While we’re not so sure about that claim, we can confirm that these are comfy. Plus, they’re super lightweight so they make a great “second pair” of shoes that can you easily pack into your bag.

Uggs

UGGS

UGGS: We were pleasantly surprised to find that UGGS actually makes some very comfortable and stylish footwear. They’re worth checking out. See their full catalogue on Zappos.

Adidas

Adidas

Adidas: Adidas will never go out of style and you’ll see people of all ages rocking them all over Europe. We prefer sticking to their classic/retro options since they’re the most versatile but you do you. See their full catalogue on Zappos.

Nike

Nike

Nike: You’ll also see people rocking their Nikes all across Europe. I know that I do. That said, we recommend sticking with their retro or fashion-forward sneakers instead of their overly “athletic” shoes. See their full catalogue on Zappos.

New Balance

New Balance: New Balance essentially makes two types of shoes — dorky dad/grandpa shoes and ultra-cool colorful shoes. Stick with the cool ones and you’ll fit right in with the other fashion-forward Europeans. See their full catalogue on Zappos.

Foot Care Advice

Sometimes, even with the best shoes, your feet will get a bit sore and banged up after walking for hours on end. So here are a few things you might want to pack incase your tootsies need a little extra TLC.

  • Blister Bandages: We always throw in a few blister bandages into our toiletry kit. These things can be a lifesaver. Check out Amazon for various options.
  • Quality Socks: We motioned it before but nice socks make a world of difference. We prefer wool or wool/synthetic blends. SmartWool Run Ultralight are great for summer and their taller socks are great for cooler weather.
  • Foot Powder: Putting on a little foot powder before you head out each day will drastically reduce sweat and odor. Check Amazon as there are multiple options out there.
  • O’Keeffe’s Foot Cream: Pamper your feet — especially if you wear sandals often. O’Keeffe’s is the best-rated option on Amazon.
  • Keep Nails Trimmed: Long nails can cause a lot of toe pain so pack a pair of nail clippers.
  • Switch Up Shoes: We prefer to have a day-on-day-off wearing schedule with our shoes when we’re putting a lot of miles on shoes.

More Packing Tips

But wait… there’s more! We have other articles to help you choose what to pack when you travel.

  • Travel Packing List for Women
  • Travel Packing List for Men
  • The Best Travel Backpacks
  • The Best Travel Underwear
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