The Most Comfortable Clothing for Travel

These pieces are sure to make your next trip the comfiest yet.

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Most Comfortable Clothing for TravelMost Comfortable Clothing for Travel Tout

Bonobos, Betabrand, and Allbirds

Long travel days usually aren't fun, and even short ones can put stress on your body. You can take some of the troubles away by making sure you're dressed in comfortable clothing, whether that’s athleisure or business casual.

As you're building a travel-friendly wardrobe, pay attention to your clothing's material. Ideally, you'll want to wear something soft and wrinkle-resistant. And also consider your own temperature preferences — wear warm but thin layers if you're likely to run cold, or breathable ones if you're likely to run hot.

And while we're here to recommend some of the most tried-and-true articles of travel clothing, the most important thing is to wear clothes that make you feel good, both in terms of comfort and appearance.

These are the most comfortable travel clothes:

T+L’s Top Picks for Women:

Best T-shirt: Allbirds Women's Classic Fit Sea Tee

Allbirds Women's Classic Fit Sea Tee

Allbirds

Why We Love It: It's made from a moisture-wicking, odor-resistant material.

What to Consider: The shirt can be a little sheer, depending on the color.

This shirt might've been designed as activewear — and it certainly functions well in that capacity — but we also think it's a great travel shirt. It's made from Allbirds' proprietary TrinoXO material, which combines sustainable eucalyptus fiber with moisture-wicking Merino wool and an antimicrobial material called chitosan, which is derived from discarded Canadian snow crab shells sourced from restaurants. That may sound like a weird combination, but the result is a super-soft, odor-resistant, and eco-friendly material that's great for wearing on the go.

The shirt comes in three standard colors — two shades of gray and an off-white — as well as a bevy of limited edition colors, as Allbirds is known for across all of its products. It might be on the pricier side for a T-shirt, but we love that you're getting a two-for-one deal here. Not only can the shirt be worn on its own on a travel day, but it can also be reused as a workout shirt while you're on the road.

Best Formal Shirt: Everlane The Oversized Poplin Shirt

Everlane The Oversized Poplin Top

Everlane

Why We Love It: The oversized fit makes the shirt feel less constricting.

What to Consider: It may not look as polished as some people prefer.

No one wants to feel constricted while they're sitting on any kind of transportation, which is why this oversized poplin shirt is the perfect travel shirt if you're seeking a more polished look. While it still has some structure, it's roomy enough to give your body breathing room — though its drop-shoulders and loose fit might not be tailored enough for some travelers. On the plus side, the cotton fabric is quite soft, not to mention very breathable, which adds to its comfort. The shirt can either be worn on its own or as a light layer to protect you from overzealous air-conditioning.

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Best Sweater: J. Crew Cashmere Classic-fit Crewneck Sweater

J. Crew Cashmere Classic-fit Crewneck Sweater

J. Crew

Why We Love It: Cashmere is thin, which makes it easy to pack, but still very warm.

What to Consider: It should be washed by hand to prevent pilling or snags.

Cashmere is an excellent material for travelers, as it's very lightweight yet very warm. When you're trying to fit all of your clothes into a carry-on or your personal item, bulk makes a big difference! This sweater comes in a variety of colors (both statement and neutral ones) as well as a range of sizes; the overall fit is relaxed, but you can size up for an even looser fit and down for a more tailored one. The sweater is also able to be hand washed, though that might not be ideal for some travelers who want a more low-maintenance piece of clothing.

Best Blazer: Betabrand Transcendent Blazer

Betabrand Transcendent Blazer

Betabrand

Why We Love It: It's super stretchy and machine-washable.

What to Consider: The fit tends to look and feel a bit off when it’s buttoned, so it’s best to wear this unbuttoned.

Blazers can be tricky. They're a wardrobe staple for both offices and nights out alike, but they're not always the most comfortable items of clothing — oftentimes they're not made of flexible material. But this one is designed for movement! Made from wrinkle-resistant Ponte fabric, which has four-way stretch, the blazer is ideal for travelers. It has real pockets, comes in sizes-extra small to 3X, and is machine-washable. Just keep in mind Ponte is a thicker material (that's what helps it stay wrinkle-free), so if you run warm, you might only want to wear this blazer in colder weather.

Best Pants: Athleta Brooklyn Ankle Pants

Athleta Brooklyn Ankle Pant

Athleta

Why We Love It: They're lightweight and quick-drying.

What to Consider: They're very thin (though not sheer).

When you want a pair of pants that's comfortable but a step up from leggings, this is a great go-to. They're made from ultra-thin recycled polyester and spandex that's lightweight, breathable, quick-drying, and abrasion-resistant (read: durable). They're also rated UPF 50+, so they'll protect you from the sun, too. As for fit, they have an elastic waistband for comfort and a tapered leg that looks well-tailored. We also love the ribbed panels along the sides that add a bit of texture. Impressively versatile, these pants work well both in an athletic context as well as a dressy one, particularly when paired with a blazer and heels.

Best Dress: Amazon Essentials Women's Classic Cap Sleeve Wrap Dress

Amazon Essentials Women's Classic Cap Sleeve Wrap Dress

Amazon

Why We Love It: It can be dressed up or down.

What to Consider: It's a true wrap, which could accidentally be revealing.

We love a good multipurpose item of clothing, and this stretchy dress nails the job with its ability to go from day to night (or from plane to meeting to dinner) with a change of shoes and some accessories. Plus, wraps are one of the more universally flattering styles of dress. The one thing to note with true wrap dresses, which this one is, is that they can accidentally reveal a little too much if the wind blows a certain way or the wearer sits in a certain position. (It's never a bad idea to wear a pair of shorts underneath, especially if you're sitting on public transportation.)

Best Shoes: Kizik The Prague Slip-On Sneaker

Kizik The Prague Slip-On Sneaker

Amazon

Why We Love It: They're extremely easy to slip on.

What to Consider: The silhouette is a little bulky, like a skate shoe.

If you don't have TSA PreCheck, and you need to take your shoes off at airport security, this pair of shoes is about to change your whole experience. Kizik has designed its shoes to be able to be slipped on without hands — the heel of the shoe collapses beneath your heel before springing back up, so you can simply slide your foot in without having to sit down. The shoe is also ultra-comfortable on the foot, with proprietary foam outsoles and contoured (and washable) insoles. If this specific style of sneaker isn't for you, Kizik's Handsfree Labs technology is available in all of its shoes.

T+L’s Top Picks for Men:

Best T-Shirt for Men: Bombas Men's Pima Cotton Crew Neck T-Shirt

Bombas Men's Pima Cotton Crew Neck T-Shirt

Bombas

Why We Love It: For every shirt purchased, one is donated.

What to Consider: It's a little pricey for a T-shirt.

Bombas might be best known for its socks, but the clothing company has expanded to quite a few other offerings, including this T-shirt. It's designed with comfort in mind, from the stitching on the seams (which is done with a special technique so that they aren't irritating to the skin) to the high-quality cotton fibers (Pima) used in the material. Though it's quite soft, it's a mid-weight shirt, which means that it's a little more forgiving when it comes to what's underneath. The price might be a little high, but there's a good reason for that: for every Bombas item purchased, the company donates one item to those in need.

Best Formal Shirt for Men: Bonobos Tech Button-down Shirt

Bonobos Tech Button Down Shirt

Bonobos

Why We Love It: It's moisture-wicking and slightly stretchy.

What to Consider: It's not meant to be dry-cleaned.

A wrinkle-resistant shirt that's also moisture-wicking and quick-drying? Yes, please! This shirt also comes in four different fits and three lengths to suit your specific body — not to mention 19 colors and patterns — making it quite the crowd-pleaser. And it's also a bit stretchy, thanks to a fabric composition of 93 percent nylon and 7 percent spandex. And on top of it all, it's machine-washable. In fact, it's actually not designed to be dry-cleaned, so don't get it mixed up with any of your other button-down shirts. It can, however, be steamed if that wrinkle resistance fades over the course of a long flight.

Best Sweater for Men: Everlane The Grade-A Cashmere Crew

Everlane The Grade-A Cashmere Crew

Everlane

Why We Love It: It's thin, soft, and warm.

What to Consider: This is a slim-fit sweater.

As we mentioned in the women's sweater section, cashmere is one of the best materials for travel sweaters, given how thin yet warm it is. Better yet, this specific sweater is made with long fibers to help prevent pilling. And for an extra nice touch, the cuffs have elastane in them, which means they're a touch stretchy and will hold their shape, even if you push them up your arms. Finally, this cashmere sweater is actually machine-washable, unlike most cashmere clothes, though you can also dry clean it. All we ask is for Everlane to add more color options.

Best Blazer for Men: Ministry of Supply Men's Kinetic Blazer

Ministry of Supply Men's Kinetic Blazer

Ministry of Supply

Why We Love It: It uses your body heat to reduce wrinkles.

What to Consider: It's pricey.

We've said it before, and we'll say it again — stretchy blazers are the way to go for travelers! This one is made from Primeflex Warp-knit Japanese Polyester, which offers four-way stretch. And it's water-repellant. And it's designed to use your body heat to reduce wrinkles after just 15 minutes of wearing it. That means the blazer will easily survive a long travel day, at the end of which, you can just toss the blazer into the washing machine, as it's unlined and doesn't need to be dry-cleaned. Note that the fit of this blazer is more tailored, so if you're between sizes, go up. (Pro tip: there are matching pants in a variety of cuts.)

Best Pants for Men: Lululemon Commission Classic-fit Pant

Lululemon Commission Classic-Fit Pant

Lululemon

Why We Love It: Stretchy, wrinkle-resistant, quick-drying — they check all the boxes.

What to Consider: The sizing has changed slightly from an older version of these pants.

By now, you've probably figured out all the key elements that we're looking for in comfortable travel clothes. This pair of pants has them all. Perhaps most importantly, they're stretchy, made from Warpstreme fabric (which is comprised of 100 percent recycled synthetic materials) that's designed to hold its shape to maintain a tailored look. But they're also quick-drying and wrinkle-resistant, which is music to a traveler's ears. They come in a rainbow of colors, extra-long lengths, and even a variety of cuts if you'd prefer something more slim-fit. Maintenance is a breeze: they're machine-washable and can be tumble-dried.

Best Joggers: Vuori Sunday Performance Jogger

Vuori Sunday Performance Jogger

Vuori

Why We Love It: Three of its five pockets are zipped.

What to Consider: There's only one length.

For more casual (read: more comfortable) plane attire, we love these joggers from Vuori. They're made from a technical knit fabric that looks a little more elegant than true sweatpants, though they're equally as comfortable since they have a four-way stretch and they wick moisture. (So, yes, they can double as workout gear, too.) One of the best details of these pants for travel, in particular, are the three zipped pockets for secure storage: two back pockets and one front pocket. That way you don't have to worry about losing your passport. There are also two open front pockets that are great for quick access.

Best Shoes for Men: Cole Haan Men's Zerogrand Stitchlite Wingtip Oxford

Cole Haan Men's Zerogrand Stitchlite Wingtip Oxford

Amazon

Why We Love It: It can be dressed up or down.

What to Consider: The sneaker-like sole is not for everyone.

Men's dress shoes are notoriously uncomfortable, but this pair bridges the gap between stiff dress shoes and comfortable sneakers. Its Oxford-style upper is made out of a flexible knit material called Stitchlite, which allows the shoe to conform to your foot without causing blisters. (Stitchlite is also super breathable, unlike leather.) And the sole of the shoe provides sneaker-like support with EVA and rubber, though that does mean it has a sporty look to it. Another reason we like this shoe: it doesn't have real laces. Because the Stitchlite material is so stretchy, you can simply slip this shoe off and on at airport security.

Tips for Buying Comfortable Travel Clothes

Look for soft, wrinkle-free materials

It's just a matter of fact that softer materials are more comfortable. No one wants to wear itchy, stiff clothing while traveling. So when shopping for comfortable travel clothes, make sure to pay attention to the materials. But don't only consider softness: look for wrinkle-free materials, which will allow you to look more polished at your final destination.

Think about your own temperature preferences

Some people run hot, and some people run cold — whichever direction you skew, keep that in mind when shopping for comfortable travel clothes. It's never a bad idea to layer up when in doubt. Temperatures inside plane cabins, for instance, can range from sweltering while at the gate (if the air conditioning isn't turned on yet) to freezing in the air.

Consider pockets

Pockets are a traveler's best friend. It's always helpful to have an easily-accessible pocket to stash your passport or a boarding pass. Also, consider the depth of the pocket — it's easy for items to fall out of shallow pockets, particularly if you're sitting down.

Frequently Asked Questions
  • What types of clothes are best to travel in?

    This is very much a personal preference, but in general, the best type of clothing to travel in is soft, stretchy, and wrinkle-resistant. Fortunately, with advances in materials, even business-casual clothes can be made from travel-friendly fabrics while maintaining a professional appearance. But there's nothing wrong with wearing athleisure clothing while traveling if that's what you'd prefer!

  • What materials are warmest?

    Wool and cashmere are some of the warmest materials you can wear while traveling. You might also want to consider synthetic materials designed to trap heat.

  • What materials are most breathable?

    Cotton reigns supreme in terms of breathability. But some synthetic materials like polyester and nylon can be breathable, too — it all depends on their knit or weave. More loosely woven materials are typically more breathable. If you're going with a synthetic fabric, make sure it's a moisture-wicking kind to encourage breathability.

Why Trust Travel + Leisure

For this article, contributor Stefanie Waldek read dozens of high-quality consumer reviews and relied on her own experience as a travel writer to curate the perfect list of comfortable travel clothing for both men and women.

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