How To Select The Proper Footwear For Your Travels

Girls with proper footwear for their fitness vacation.

Picking The Right Shoes For Your Vacation

When preparing for vacation, you may be able to get away with packing a few more T-shirts than you need, but the same can’t be said for footwear. Unfortunately for shoe-lovers and indecisive packers, shoes take up a lot of room, so it’s crucial to pack only the essentials.

The good news is that it’s actually very easy to pack the right shoes for your next trip. It all comes down to your travel destination and your planned activities. 

For example, a city break will call for stylish but more importantly comfortable travel shoes. If you plan to go for a morning run or utilize the hotel gym, then a pair of comfortable sneakers is absolutely essential.


City Travel

Comfortable walking shoes or sandals (depending on the weather) are perfect for most city breaks. Consider shoes that are durable, lightweight, and breathable. Leather is a good choice, as are shoes that feature a mesh area for ventilation.

Ballerina flats may look cute with a pair of skinny jeans or a summer dress, but we wouldn’t recommend them for a long day of walking and waiting in line. It’s crucial to choose shoes that attach firmly to your foot, and shoes that have thick but flexible soles as they will help with shock absorption on hard pavements.

We also recommend wearing small socks with walking shoes and travel hiking boots to prevent blisters.

Hiking and Backpacking

It’s hard to predict the environment and the surroundings when hiking or backpacking, so it’s always best to prepare for everything. The first and most important quality of a backpacking or hiking boot is to ensure it is waterproof. Waterproof boots mean you can tackle rice paddies and shallow rivers alike without worrying about wet feet. Wet feet and hot climates are not a good combination, as this can lead to fungal infections which could potentially ruin your entire vacation. 

Ensure your shoes are sturdy and supportive. The soles of the hiking and backpacking boots should bend ever so slightly, but beware if they can fold back on themselves. That’s a sign  that they will not support your feet properly. Shoes that fold back on themselves should therefore be deemed unsuitable.

Most hiking boots should be at least half a size bigger than your normal shoes. If there is not enough space at the front of the shoe when walking downhill, for example, you could cause serious damage to your toes and maybe even lose a toenail. We also recommend wearing your boots – especially hiking boots – in for at least three weeks before heading off on your adventures. This will allow the boots to adjust to the unique shape of your foot.

A final tip for backpackers and hikers is to consider wearing ‘silver socks’ when wearing closed shoes. This is especially useful for those who have particularly sweaty feet, as the silver nanoparticles will kill harmful bacteria and fungi. This prevents fungal infections and will keep your feet healthy and odorless.

Bring Emergency Flats

We wouldn’t recommend ballet flats for a long day of walking, but we always suggest packing some foldable flats for emergencies. Some restaurants insist on closed toe shoes, so it’s always worth packing some as they are super-light and don’t take up much room.

The Beach

Sadly, flip flops – as cute as they are – aren’t recommended for a day at the beach. This is mainly because sand is one of the most difficult surfaces to walk on, and flip flops will do nothing to support your foot. They are fine for short periods such as walking from hotel room to elevator to pool and vise versa, but should be avoided if any more walking is intended.

Instead, choose sandals made of plastic or any other robust material. Avoid leather as this can stretch, crack, and lose its shape when exposed to water. Your beach shoes should also have a thick sole, as this will minimize the amount of sand that goes under your feet when walking.

Remember to keep these tips in mind when you start packing for your next travel adventure. Your feet will definitely thank you! 

By: Clarissa Rivera


Of course, we also want to touch on shoes for any type of adventure travel. If you’re going on a fitness vacation, bike riding through Europe or kayaking and canoeing through the mountains, it is absolutely important to choose the right shoes for the type of movement you’ll be doing. Here are a few more tips to think about when choosing your shoes for your travels.

  • Break new shoes in first - If you’ll be logging some miles in your shoes, it’s best to break new shoes in first before going on vacation. Your foot will have the ability to get used to the shoe and you’ll minimize the occurrence of blisters. This is important with any shoe but even more important when it’s a shoe that you’ll be walking, hiking, biking or running in for hours at a time.

  • Consider your foot’s needs - Yes, it’s definitely ok to bring some cute shoes that look great with your favorite outfits but when it comes to sightseeing and activity during the day, you’ve got to also consider the physical needs of your foot. Do you have high or low arches? Do you require arch support in a shoe? Do you have something like plantar fasciitis that requires you to choose shoes to support that condition or ad orthotics in order to have the proper foot position?

  • Choose shoes that can double as day to night - You might not be able to do this with all of your shoes but some are great for supportive purposes during the day and still look cute enough to go to a casual dinner in. If and when it’s possible, pick shoes that can be versatile so you don’t have to pack a ton of options.

  • Make a list and choose accordingly - When you’re packing for your getaway, make a list of all of the activities you might be doing and choose your shoes based on what you need. So if you make a list, you can can easily be able to see that you’ll be hiking, working out on the beach, climbing a mountain or just sightseeing all day. You can then plan accordingly.


Your feet are so important. We walk on our feet every single day yet many of us neglect to choose shoes that truly support our needs. Consider that what happens to your feet trickles up the rest of your body and can cause problems if left alone. Walking in shoes that aren’t the proper size or have the proper support can shift the foot into an unnatural position causing issues with the knees, hips, back and so on. It’s truly important to treat your feet right on a daily basis — not just when on vacation. So let’s get back to planning! Go grab the right shoes for your vacation and get them in your suitcase.

Questions? Leave any questions or comments about this blog post in the comment section below. We’re happy to help.


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Girls wearing the proper shoes for active travel.