Traveling is exciting and fun, but it requires smart planning. Since shoes can take up valuable carry-on space, you’re probably not only trying to figure out how to pack shoes for travel but also looking for the best few pairs to bring along. Ideally, you’ll have versatile shoes that can be worn for multiple occasions, provide maximum comfort on long hikes or extravagant dinners, and achieve your ideal travel style. Simple—right?
While it may appear impossible, there are a few factors you can prioritize in your travel shoe to get the most wear, comfort, and style out of every adventure-packed day.
In this guide, we’ll take a journey through the world of travel footwear so you can understand why stylish yet functional shoes are essential on your next trip. Read on for tips on choosing your perfect pair, plus recommendations on our 5 best shoes for travel.
The Benefits of Investing in Quality Travel Shoes
Imagine: You embark on the first day of vacation, for which you’ve planned a beautiful morning hike followed by brunch on a lush patio. But halfway through your hike, you feel a blister coming on—a moment that forces you to calculate which other hiking shoe you have with you, where you can buy bandages, and how you can reduce your foot pain for the rest of your trip.
This all-too-common story is one of the chief reasons why investing in quality, reliable travel shoes is so important.
We’ve all seen a friend or family member buy a flimsy pair of flip flops at the gift shop because they forgot to bring open-toed shoes on the beach trip. Or maybe you’ve been forced to buy an overpriced tennis shoe after spending a few hours at a theme park with aching feet from walking in less-than-supportive athletic shoes.
By selecting supportive travel shoes before your trip, you can enjoy the time spent on your trip more. You can save money on emergency footwear, time, and worry.
Comfort and Style: The Perfect Combination for Travel Shoes
Suitcases only have so much space, and savvy travelers need to make the most of their storage. Until a mad scientist comes along to invent infinite suitcase capacity, we’ll have to remain choosy as to what footwear comes along for the ride.
A comfortable travel shoe that is specifically designed to offer simultaneous support and style is the ideal choice.
Why Comfort Matters
People often underestimate just how much they’ll need to walk during their travels.
Sightseeing? You’re going to be on your feet all day long, possibly walking miles to visit all the best spots. On a work trip? You’re sure to get countless steps in, whether you’re commuting to see clients or ensuring an event runs smoothly.
That’s why it’s key to pick shoes that fit correctly and don’t constrict feet. That’s why, most often, the first time you wear a new pair of shoes shouldn’t be on a trip, as this might force you to wear a restrictive or painful pair of shoes for several hours at a time.1
Podiatrists advise that wearing shoes that fit properly can also provide tremendous health benefits, such as:2
- Decreased pain and fatigue
- Decreased risk of bunions, corns, calluses, and ingrown toenails
- Mood improvements
- Energy boosts
With the right shoes, it is possible to enjoy all these benefits while still showing off your style. Beauty doesn’t have to be pain: especially not when it comes to footwear. Let’s take a look at some of the most popular and reliable travel shoe types.
Choosing the Right Shoe for Your Trip
Not all trips are created equal. Your shoe needs and preferences will vary depending on what kind of activities your travels entail.
These are some good rules of thumb to keep in mind when choosing a style to best suit you. Ask yourself which of these descriptors best fits your travel itinerary to find your ideal fit.
- Casual – If comfort is your top priority or you plan on being active for long periods of time, pick a comfortable travel shoe that can be your ultimate sidekick for support. You can’t go wrong with a trusty athletic sneaker, especially if hiking is your jam. Sandals also make for a practical casual shoe if you’re traveling in a warm, tropical area.
- A little fancier – For the traveler who has places to be but wants to look stunning when they arrive, a loafer or slip-on walking shoe can be a cohesive footwear choice. A versatile travel shoe will be something you can easily dress up or down depending on the occasion. Look sharp in all your trip photos by choosing classy travel walking shoes.
- More formal – Maybe your trip includes a work gala where attendees will be dressed to the nines. Or perhaps you intend to try out a different 5-star restaurant every night of your trip. If your travels tend to err on the more formal side, a wedge sandal can be your best friend. This comfy shoe style won’t slow you down, but they will elevate any outfit.
Tips for Choosing the Best Travel Shoes
It can be difficult to narrow down your choices to pick the best travel shoes for your needs. When making this long-term investment, it can be helpful to keep these strategies in mind:
- Match your personal style – Ask yourself, will I really feel my best in these shoes, or will they end up collecting dust at the back of my closet? It’s okay to be a little adventurous— just make sure the travel shoes you invest in truly match your personal preferences. Choosing a travel shoe that TikTok raves about but that you’d never actually wear, for instance, is probably on its way to the back of your closet.
- Pick shoes you can wear multiple times – Choose footwear that will serve you well on multiple trips, for multiple occasions. It can be helpful to consider the different types of upcoming travel you have planned. This will help you zero in on a style of shoe that can best serve all or many of your needs.
- Opt for multi-functionality – Imagine your trip involves exploring a bustling city, hiking a rugged nature trail, and meeting up with pals at some local eateries. Without versatile travel shoes, these activities could require three different pairs. But one high-quality pair of travel shoes can serve you in all these scenarios. No need to stop back at the hotel to change.
By being intentional about the shoes you pick, you can make a confident purchase that will serve you for many years to come.
Best Travel Shoes from Vionic
Our innovative footwear utilizes modern alignment technology to bring you full-body benefits. Given our extensive assortment of travel and walking shoes made for any and all travel, we have you covered on the shoe front so all you have to focus on is planning an unforgettable trip.
Women’s Travel Shoes
Whether you’re a low-maintenance gal or a super-chic fashionista, you deserve to travel in ultimate style and comfort. Here are a few of our best walking shoes for travel that strike a mix between functionality and fashionable.
- Uptown Loafer – A classic and timeless look, you can’t go wrong with a tried-and-true loafer for travel. The stylish but simple design of these suede shoes allows them to pair perfectly with any outfit. Specifically crafted with travelers in mind, this footwear collapses flat for ultimate packing convenience. Flexible soles allow for endless hours of exploration.
- Winny Sneaker – A perfect fusion of style and comfort. These sneakers combine a modern and versatile design with Vionic’s signature biomechanical technology, ensuring optimal foot health and support. With a durable construction and attractive color options, the Winny Sneaker effortlessly complements any outfit while providing all-day comfort.
- Bella Sandal – Traveling often involves long hours of walking or standing, and the Bella Sandal is specially crafted to keep your feet feeling fresh and comfortable throughout your journey. Its lightweight construction and flexible design allow for easy packing, making them an essential item for your suitcase or carry-on.
Men’s Travel Shoes
You deserve to take pride in your appearance and put your best foot forward even while traveling. These popular selections allow you to achieve a timeless and classy look without limiting your ability to adventure.
- Trent Sneaker – This lightweight yet durable shoe is crafted with podiatrist-designed technology. Not only do they provide optimal arch support and stability, the elastic laces make sliding them on and off a breeze. A leather exterior elevates the luxurious look and feel of this footwear.
- Wyatt Toe Post Sandal – We’ve elevated this classic travel shoe style by crafting a sport sandal with outsole construction and a cutout arch. Available in premium leather, this shoe is ideal for enjoying nice weather on your travels without sacrificing supreme style.
You’ll notice that our collection heavily features leather and suede. Podiatrists agree that these materials promote optimal foot health because they can:3
- Prevent odors and fungus growth
- Maximize breathability and comfort
Empower Your Adventures With Vionic Shoes
Shop our trusted collection of Vionic shoes to take the stress out of packing and revolutionize your travel experience. Whether you travel for special occasions or you’re a bona fide jet-setter, quality shoes are a must for making the most of your adventures.
We’ve highlighted just a few selections from our wide-ranging library of high-quality footwear. Browse the best shoes for traveling and walking in our women’s selection to see more styles, or check out our most comfortable travel shoes for men to see how we’ve harnessed biomechanical technology to craft premium footwear.
- “Don’t let sore feet trip up your travel plans.” Foot & Ankle Centers. 2 September, 2016. https://www.footandanklecentersva.com/blog/77701-dont-let-sore-feet-trip-up-your-travel-plans/
- Lin, Mark. “Foot Health Tips For Everyone From a Professional Podiatrist.” The Footwork Clinic. https://www.thefootworkclinic.com.au/foot-health-tips-for-everyone-from-a-professional-podiatrist/
- Leonard Greenwald. “A Podiatrist Gives Tips for Choosing Shoes.” Foot Doctor in San Jose. https://www.footdoctorinsanjose.com/blog/a-podiatrist-gives-tips-for-choosing-shoes