I love versatile clothes, and how it makes packing simpler. We’ve seen a lot of outdoor brands creating more lifestyle clothes as well as newer brands that are popping up all about making clothes that can transition seamlessly from the office to going out in the evening.
A big thank you to 686, Anatomie, Boulder Denim, Topo Designs, REI, Royal Robbins for providing PR samples for review. All opinions are always our own. This post may contain affiliate links, where we receive a small commission on sales of the products that are linked at no additional cost to you. Read our full disclosure for more info. Thank you for supporting the brands that make Local Adventurer possible.
Last Updated: November 19, 2020
Things to Look for in Travel Pants
- Comfort – Comfort is big for us, especially if we’re wearing them all day long in multiple scenarios.
- Versatility – Our typical trip is a mix of fine dining, outdoor activities, exploring cities, and more. We want pants that can handle it all.
- Wrinkle Free – Who wants to spend time ironing clothes when you’re traveling? Not me.
- Packable – Light and easy to pack.
- Performance – Sweat-wicking, quick-drying, or waterproof features are always great to have, but sometimes that comes at the expense of looking too sporty or outdoorsy. We love clothes that can handle both.
The Best Travel Pants for Women and Men 2020
I don’t know about you, but I’m never wearing stiff denim again. Ever since discovering Boulder Denim jeans, they’ve been our go-to jeans for any occasion. We first discovered them at a demo at our climbing gym, and we loved how stretchy they felt since mobility is so important for climbing.
We started with their original design, but they’ve improved the comfort and stretchiness for version two.
I currently wear the women’s straight fit surf blue and skinny fit newmoon blue, and Jacob wears the men’s slim-fit pitch black. As you can guess, they are great for climbing, but they look great for any occasion. We wear them around the city and on all our travels.
- Comfortable and stretchy
- Deep-pocket and hidden zipper pocket
- Stain & water-resistant (for climbers, chalk comes right off)
- Ethically-made and vegan-approved
- One free return or size exchange for every order
- Memory-shape denim
- They come in standard lengths which require you to hem them yourself
- Comfortable and casual
- Built to handle the outdoors
- Water repellent finish
- 7/8 length with adjustable hem
- Elastic waist
- Zippered back pocket
- Great for casual trips but can’t really be dressed up
- No belt loops
The Best Travel Pants for Women in 2020
Leggings are always a part of my packing list. I can lounge in them, climb, or hike. I’m always looking for ones with pockets, and I love wearing these REI leggings (though pockets can be both a pro and con).
These are my go-to for flights.
- Moisture-wicking and breathable
- Wide waistband that keeps leggings snug and provides core support
- Thigh pockets
- Since they have pockets, these leggings are harder to dress up.
- A bit long in the legs if you’re petite like me, but I always have this problem.
Pro Tip: The black ones are much more versatile. I ended up with the odyssey gray since I have way too much black in my wardrobe.
A solid black pant is a must for any wardrobe. I had been looking for one for the longest time when I finally found the Anatomie Skyler Travel Pant. I love the versatility of these pants and it’s a great addition to any closet.
Pro Tip: I have both the gray ones and the black ones, but the black ones seem to run a bit smaller than the gray.
- Can easily dress up or down
- Low maintenance fabrics
- Breathable, stretchy, and comfortable
- Lightweight and extremely packable
- Moisture-wicking and wrinkle-free
- Machine washable
- They do require air dry so if you like washing your clothes while you’re traveling you need enough time to do that.
I hate bugs, so when ExOfficio started a line with a bug-blocking treatment, I knew I had to add a few pieces to my collection. I ended up with these joggers that are super lightweight and comfortable. Plus they have built-in UPF 50.
Pro Tip: Jogger pants can be challenging to dress up, but it’s still possible. Look for both slim-fitting pants and fabrics that give it structure.
- Lightweight and packable
- Quick-drying in case you get wet or want to wash them in the sink
- Insect repelling fabric wards off ticks, mosquitoes, and midges (effective for 70 washes)
- Zippered back pocket
- Elastic cuffs stay in place and easily roll up
- Looks very sporty or outdoorsy
- Need to reapply bug-blocking treatment after 70 washes
These pants are included in a lot of the best travel pants post so I had to check them out. Unfortunately, even the XS looks too big for me. I did however fit their culottes version much better (pictured below).
- Really soft and built for travel
- Spills and dirt wash out easily
- Bluesign approved lightweight stretch fabric
- Zippered hand pockets
- Have seen multiple reviews stating that they fit baggy
These are the best bang-for-buck pants that I really loved. I used to own them in so many colors. Over time, I’ve replaced them with better quality pants that last longer, but I still have a few.
- Priced lowest out of all the travel pants
- Soft and fits well at first
- Comes in a ton of colors
- Doesn’t look like leggings
- They stretch out over time, so at the end of the day, they fit loose.
- It isn’t the best quality, so you may go through them quicker if you wear them a lot.
The Best Travel Pants for Men in 2020
- Zippered cargo pockets
- Adjustable cuffs
- DWR application to protect against spills
- Jacob got them in green and the cargo pockets definitely stand out more in that color – are cargo pants still a no-no?
These have been the perfect pants for summer here in Vegas. They are lightweight and super stretchy. He wears them to the gym, outdoor adventures, and to run errands. Right now, he only has them in Golden Brown which looks more outdoorsy, but the black and navy can be easily dressed up.
- 10 pockets without it looking overly cumbersome
- Super stretchy and breathable material
- DWR water and stain-resistant finish
- Drawcord (can be adjusted to run inside or outside the waistband) and belt loops
- UPF 40+
- Packs into itself for easy travel
- We’ve read reviews that darker colors will show dust easily
- The material still looks casual
Whereas most outdoor pants can disguise as city pants, these look more like city pants that can perform like outdoor pants.
- Clean city style but proven trekking performance
- Bluesign approved durable stretch fabric
- Zippered thigh pocket
- UPF 50+
- Hidden corded angles
- The thigh pocket makes it look a little less sleek
Jacob used to wear colored pants so he’s been looking to bring them back. The Workday Pant Slim in Maroon is the perfect way to get back into it, and it definitely helps that they are super comfortable.
- Super stretchy and soft material
- Lots of color options
- Hidden back zipper pocket
- Easy care and quick dry
- Run a bit short, which you can take into consideration when ordering
Pro Tip: They run on the shorter side. I normally wear a 30/30 and might get a longer one next time.
This is another pair of durable and comfortable pants great for the office and weekend activities. I wouldn’t wear them climbing or hiking, but they are great for exploring the city and light activities.
- Water repellent treatment
- UPF 50+
- 2-way stretch
- Hidden zippered pocket
- Bluesign approved fabric
- Thicker material makes it less stretchy
Can you think of any others that belong on our best travel pants list? What are your go-to pants for travel?
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Esther + Jacob
Esther and Jacob are the founders of Local Adventurer, which is one of the top 5 travel blogs in the US. They believe that adventure can be found both near and far and hope to inspire others to explore locally. They explore a new city in depth every year and currently base themselves in Las Vegas.