The 10 Best Travel Clothes and Accessories for Women of 2022

The right set of travel-friendly pieces can help make packing quick and easy.

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 Best Travel Clothes and Accessories

Amazon / Lululemon

There’s plenty to love about jetting off on an exciting trip. From daydreaming about the sights and tastes of a new city to that first good sleep in a plush hotel bed, nothing beats the anticipation of exploring a brand-new spot (or returning to a favorite location). Now, that’s not to say planning travel is all sunshine and roses, especially when there’s no guarantee your bag will be waiting for you at baggage claim.

To help out, we’ve put together a list of the absolute best travel clothes and accessories for women that can all fit in a carry-on. From wrinkle-proof garments to folding handbags and even machine-washable flats, our list includes everything you’ll want to bring in the cabin for a stress-free trip.

Here’s our breakdown of the best travel clothes and accessories for women:

Best Pants

Skechers Women's Go Walk Pant

Skechers Women's Go Walk Pant

Amazon

Why We Love It: This versatile pant is moisture-wicking, breathable, and boasts UPF 40+.

What to Consider: The length is quite long (even in the petite sizing) and might fit a bit awkwardly on some people.

The Skechers Women's Go Walk Pant reigns supreme in our books when it comes to comfort and versatility. The special Goflex fabric is soft and cotton-like with a slightly matte finish, which makes it easy to pair these pants with everything from an oversized sweater and sneakers at the airport to a button-down blouse and flats for an afternoon of brasserie-hopping in Paris.

The breathable material is moisture-wicking and stretchy like a good pair of leggings, but the slight flair at the ankle allows for a much more sophisticated silhouette. We also love that the Go Walk Pant includes hidden pockets large enough to slip your keys or wallet as well as UPF 40+ material which helps to protect your skin against unwanted sun rays.

Price at time of publish: from $17

Best Sweater

Lululemon Merino Wool-Blend Ribbed Long Wrap Sweater

Lululemon Merino Wool-Blend Ribbed Long Wrap Sweater

Lululemon

Why We Love It: This merino wool wrap sweater can easily double as an inflight blanket or a cozy coverup for evenings on the town.

What to Consider: The delicate material might be difficult to wash and dry while on the road.

When you’re trying to pack light and efficiently, it’s vital to find a multi-purpose sweater that’ll work in various situations throughout your trip. The Lululemon Merino Wool-Blend Ribbed Long Wrap Sweater is our top pick in terms of stylish and functional multi-use fashion. The oversized sweater hits just below the bum which makes it a super comfortable option to curl up in while on the move. However, the delicate merino wool material and muted colorways make it an equally smart option for museum-hopping during the day or heading out to a semi-formal dinner at night. 

Price at time of publish: $148

Best Dress

Everlane ​​The Linen Workwear Dress

Everlane ​​The Linen Workwear Dress

Everlane ​

Why We Love It: This 100 percent linen number is both breathable and lightweight without appearing sheer or see-through.

What to Consider: The silhouette is a bit tight in the hip and butt area, and might not be comfortable for all body types.

There’s something about a linen garment that looks put-together and sophisticated in any environment — and this workwear dress from Everlane is no exception. The lightweight T-shirt dress is made from 100 percent linen which means it’s extremely breathable even in super hot climates. The versatile material does wrinkle easily, but linen garments — especially washed linen — tend to smooth themselves out as soon as they’re stretched onto a flat surface (or even while on your body!). We also love the plunging v-neck design and slightly boxy silhouette, which makes it simple to pair this dress with casual or more formal accessories.

Price at time of publish: from $61

Best Blouse

Lands' End Women's Wrinkle Free No Iron Button Front Shirt

Lands' End Women's Wrinkle Free No Iron Button Front Shirt

Lands' End

Why We Love It: This wrinkle-free blouse will appear crisp and professional-looking — even when pulled straight out of your suitcase.

What to Consider: The buttonholes are quite tight which makes it a bit difficult to get buttons in and out.

Traveling for business or planning for a bucket-list dinner in a five-star restaurant requires a different approach to packing — but it doesn’t mean you have to invest in a suit bag or laundry service at your hotel. The wrinkle-free button-front shirt from Land’s End is all you’ll need in terms of stress-free formalwear; it’s ultra-soft and comfortable but still looks extremely crisp and polished. Pair it with a pair of flats and neutral leggings for an effortless city look, or throw on a blazer and heels for a dressier evening look.

Price at time of publish: from $39

Best Leggings

Lululemon High-Rise Align Pant 28"

4.8
Lululemon Align High-rise Pant

Lululemon

Why We Love It: This breathable yoga pant can easily double as activewear or athleisure thanks to the high-rise waist, neutral color choices, and slightly glossy finish.

What to Consider: The ankle hits a little high which might look strange with low-rise boots or sandals.

Yoga pants get a lot of flack when worn as regular pants, but there’s a reason the polarizing garment has garnered such a huge fan base over the past few years: they’re extremely comfortable! We particularly love the Lululemon Align High-rise Pant for traveling. It’s designed for yoga which makes it super stretchy and comfortable for both working out or sitting in an economy seat for hours but the flattering high-waist design and shiny finish also allow these leggings to pass as pants in most situations. Pair them with a pair of flats and a blazer for an easy but sophisticated approach to city dressing (trust us, the light sheen finish means no one will know you’re wearing yoga pants!).

Price at time of publish: from $98

Best Jacket

Orvis Pack-and-go Jacket

Orvis Pack-and-go Jacket

Amazon

Why We Love It: This ultra-lightweight jacket packs down so small you can throw it into your carry-on or handbag.

What to Consider: The gently ruched design isn’t exactly the most stylish option in terms of outerwear.

Packing a jacket in a carry-on seems like a total enigma, but the Orvis Pack-and-Go Jacket makes it convenient and easy to ensure you’ve always got emergency outerwear on hand for when the weather takes a turn. The folding rain jacket is wind- and water-resistant which makes it great for just about any weather-related blunder. But the real reason this jacket earns our top spot? The incredibly lightweight and compact design that can actually pack down into an included nylon stuff-sack that’s small enough to fit into your carry-on or even in a large tote or handbag. 

Price at time of publish: $149

Best Sneakers

Allbirds Women's Wool Runners

Allbirds Wool Runners

Allbirds

Why We Love It: This wool running shoe is moisture-wicking and can even be thrown in the washer to freshen up after a long trip.

What to Consider: This sneaker stretches out quite a bit with regular wear.

Sneakers or running shoes take up a lot of precious carry-on space — but the Allbirds Wool Runners are both comfortable and stylish enough to wear from the plane to the gym and beyond. The breathable wool material is moisture-wicking and molds to fit the unique form of your foot while the castor bean insole is both eco-friendly and extremely cushioning, even after getting in tens of thousands of steps while sight-seeing on foot. We also love that these shoes can be thrown in the washing machine and set aside to air dry when they need a little freshening up.

Price at time of publish: $110

Best Flats

Rothy’s The Flat

Rothy''s The Flat

Rothy's

Why We Love It: This versatile flat packs down small and can be thrown in the washing machine as needed.

What to Consider: There’s a break-in period.

A decent pair of comfortable flats are an absolute must for city travel; not only are they great for walking around but this style can easily transition from casual day wear to evening wear (which means you can leave those high heels at home if you’re hoping to save space). The Flat by Rothy’s is one of our favorites for travel due to its malleable structure that can easily withstand being squashed in a carry-on. The basic silhouette makes it easy to pair these shoes with just about anything else in your wardrobe while the eco-friendly material can be thrown into the washing machine with the rest of your laundry after your trip. 

Price at time of publish: $125

Best Handbag

Longchamp Large Le Pliage Tote

Le Pliage Tote

Amazon

Why We Love It: This French-made handbag was designed to be folded into a neat little package and thrown in your carry-on without taking up any space at all.

What to Consider: The sharp corners on Le Pliage bags quickly wear down and might even fray over time with heavy use.

The Longchamp Le Pliage bag is one of the most popular silhouettes in recent years, but there’s a reason it can feel like everybody has some version of the folding nylon handbag. Not only is the French-made tote relatively affordable considering it comes from a high-end Parisian fashion house, there are so many available colors that it’s easy to find a style to match your specific taste and existing wardrobe. 

We have this bag in multiple sizes and colors and always keep one folded up neatly in our carry-on to use as an emergency handbag or market tote as needed while on the road. The pebbled leather handles and waterproof nylon exterior also make this bag a great option for use in inclement weather — a time when soft leather, canvas, or cotton handbags simply won’t do.

Price at time of publish: $155

Best Socks

CopperJoint Compression Socks

CopperJoint Compression Socks

Amazon

Why We Love It: This set of copper compression socks will ensure optimal comfort on long flights or while working out to avoid swelling.

What to Consider: The knee-high socks might feel a little tight for those who have more muscular calves.

Okay, we’ll be the first to admit that there’s nothing particularly sexy about compression socks — but trust us when we say they are a must-have travel accessory, especially if you’re embarking on a long-haul flight. This set of copper-infused compression knee socks was designed to help keep swelling down when sitting for a long time while also ensuring minimal inflammation south of the knee. Compression socks can also help prevent injury or pain during long walks or while working out once you arrive. 

Price at time of publish: $29

Tips for Buying Travel Clothes and Accessories

Choose soft fabrics 

Travel-friendly clothing is all about comfort, which is why you should seek out soft fabrics over anything stiff or scratchy. Materials like merino wool, cotton, and nylon are going to be your best bet for performance-friendly garments that’ll stay cozy during long days or overnight flights.

Look for wrinkle-resistant materials

Nobody wants to spend their first morning in a new city running around the hotel in search of an ironing board or steamer. Instead, look for wrinkle-resistant materials whenever possible. A natural material like wool is a great option, as are synthetic blends like polyester or spandex.

Opt for lightweight items

Whether you’re attempting to travel with only a carry-on or you’ve conceded to checking a suitcase, choosing lightweight garments can make packing and transporting bags a whole lot easier. Plus, investing in lightweight items will help if your airline has weight limits for carry-on bags, and help you avoid overweight baggage fees, too.

Test run your items before travel

We’re all guilty of picking up new clothing or accessories when preparing for a trip abroad, but you don’t want to get into a situation where your new jeans don’t fit properly or your shoes cause painful blisters. Be sure to test-run each new item before you bring it on your next trip to ensure you’re able to comfortably hit the ground running.

Frequently Asked Questions
  • How should I fold clothes for travel?

    There’s a lot of debate over whether it’s better to fold clothes traditionally or to roll them into neat little rows in order to efficiently save space and avoid wrinkles. Rolling clothes will help to ensure your garments are as crease- and wrinkle-free as possible but, to save the most space, you’ll want to invest in a handful of compression packing cubes.

  • How should I pack larger items like shoes?

    Packing shoes can take up a huge amount of space in your suitcase, which is why it’s advisable to wear your largest pair while traveling. If you need to pack more than one pair, consider stuffing your shoes with socks, underwear, and other rolled-up clothing to make the most of the space.

Why Trust Travel + Leisure

For this article, Travel + Leisure contributor Kaitlyn McInnis used her experience as a travel writer and former lifestyle editor to curate the best travel clothes and accessories for women.

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