BEST Travel Shoes for Women in 2024 [Comfy & Stylish]

Reviewed by Jodelle Marx
Last updated:

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TL;DR: We’ve tested Allbirds Tree Runners for three years and they’re the best travels shoes for women because of their remarkable comfort, versatile style, and environmentally friendly design. Allbirds are reasonably priced, at about $98, with machine washable materials and replaceable soles that make it easy to refresh your step.

Not to pull the “I live in Europe” card, but because I do, I know how important comfortable women’s walking shoes are. 

I’ve been living abroad and traveling regularly these past two years. And in that time, I’ve started going through pairs of shoes faster than when I lived in the US. 

I got tired of replacing pair after pair with subpar options, so I started looking into the best travel shoes for women that would last.

With all of my research, I learned that the best travel shoes come in a variety of different styles.

Really, there are as many styles of travel shoes as there are types of travel experiences. 

We’ve tested and heavily researched the top contenders on the market, from comfy shoes for tackling cobblestone streets to casual shoes for an evening stroll on a beach. 

By the end of this article, you’ll have a sense of the best travel shoes for women and which features to pay attention to for your next trip.  

A young woman wearing black shorts, a brown tank top and black Teva sandals stands in front of a Colosseum lookalike in Croatia.

Here’s a Quick Look at Our Recommendations

Most Comfortable Shoes for Travel

  1. Best Walking Shoes for Travel – Allbirds Tree Runners 
  2. Best Lightweight Travel Shoe – Woolloomooloo Belmont
  3. Best Athletic-Style Travel Shoe – Adidas Cloudfoam Shoes 
  4. Best Running Shoes for Travel – Hoka Clifton 9
  5. Best Waterproof Shoes for Travel – Loom Waterproof Sneakers 
  6. Best Vegan-Friendly Shoe for Travel – Cariuma OCA Low
  7. Best Sockless Shoe for Travel – Allbirds Tree Skippers

Best Stylish & Dressy Travel Shoes for Women

  1. Best Dress Shoes for Travel – VIVAIA Vienna Flat 
  2. Best Travel Flats – Allbirds Tree Breezers 
  3. Best Travel Loafers – Rothy’s Loafer
  4. Best Travel Boots – Thursday Duchess Chelsea Boots 
  5. Best Waterproof Boots for Travel – Sorel Tivoli IV Boot

Best Sandals & Flip Flops for Travel 

  1. Best Travel Sandals – Teva Original Sandals
  2. Dressy Walking Sandals – Sorel Ella II Sandal
  3. Best Travel Flip Flops – Olukai Ohana 

Best Hiking Travel Shoes for Women

  1. Best Travel Hiking Shoes – Merrell Siren Edge 3
  2. est Travel Hiking Boots – Columbia Newton Ridge

Most Comfortable Travel Shoes

#1 Allbirds Tree Runners

Best Walking Shoes for Travel

Product image for the Allbirds Tree Runners in grey.

Materials: Eucalyptus uppers, Sweetfoam outsole

We love the Allbirds Tree Runners here at The Atlas Heart. In fact, we’re big fans of Allbirds shoes overall.

We’ve tested and reviewed multiple Allbirds styles, and the unique materials hold up to their claims.

The Tree Runner is one of my favorite travel shoes for women because they’re comfortable, and their simple style is versatile.

I also feel good about wearing Allbirds because they’re the most environmentally friendly travel shoes I’ve found. Allbirds is a certified carbon-neutral business. 

The Tree Runners’ breathable mesh upper is made from responsibly sourced Eucalyptus fibers. 

Allbirds uses sugarcane to make the Sweetfoam midsole. Even the eyelets derive from organic materials.

That said, they aren’t considered vegan because Tree Runners have wool-lined insoles. 

This little bit of wool helps the castor oil-based foam insoles wick moisture and reduce odor for comfy sockless wearing. 

You can even replace the insoles for $15 if you eventually need to.

If you like the sound of Allbirds, but you’re curious about shoes made with more merino wool, check out the Allbirds Wool Runners or the next shoe on this list: the Woolloomooloo Belmont.

Read our complete review of the Allbirds Tree Runners, as well as our reviews of the Allbirds Wool Loungers, Allbirds Tree Dashers, and Allbirds Tree Runners vs Wool Runners.


  • Breathable 
  • Moisture wicking
  • Odor resistant
  • Natural materials


  • No half sizes

#2 Woolloomooloo Belmont 

Best Lightweight Travel Shoe

Product image for the Woolloomooloo Belmont in dark blue/grey.

Materials: Merino wool upper, lining, and insole

I’m a notorious over-packer, and carrying lightweight shoes helps me avoid extra baggage fees. 

The Woolloomooloo Belmont walking shoe is lightweight without sacrificing support, style, or comfort.

Merino wool is a sustainable fiber and Woolloomooloo’s specialty.

The “Farm to Feet” experience is at the core of Woolloomooloo’s ethos. When I first learned about this company, I spent way too much time reading about the sheep that provide their wool. 

Woolloomooloo’s two Australian founders realized that Australian Merino wool could be the key to creating sustainable and comfortable walking shoes. 

They digitally knit the wool uppers. This way, the wool doesn’t have to be boiled, which damages the fibers. 

The merino wool draws moisture away from your skin and keeps your feet dry. It’s breathable in summer and toasty warm in the winter. 

Another differentiating feature of the Belmont shoe is its elastic laces. 

Woolloomooloo actually includes special instructions on tying the laces, and they’re so cute!

Lastly, the Belmont comes in eight colors, ranging from white to red to bright yellow. 

Similar shoes, such as the Allbirds Wool Runners, are only available in colors like grey, black, white, and navy.


  • Lightweight
  • Merino wool knit that’s cozy in winter and breathable in summer
  • Sockless shoe
  • Unique laces
  • Casual style
  • Conscientious wool sourcing
  • Fun colors


  • High price point
  • Only available in European sizes


#3 Cloudfoam Pure 2.0 Running Shoe

Best Athletic-Style Travel Shoe

Product image for the Cloudfoam Pure 2.0 Running Shoe in white.

Materials: Primegreen recycled materials

My friends know that I’m going to wear athletic shoes whenever possible because I don’t like my shoes’ capabilities to limit me. 

When I look for the best athletic travel shoes for women, I prioritize keeping my feet comfortable. 

I want more cushion than my normal workout shoes and excellent breathability for walking all day. 

Adidas Cloudfoam Pure 2.0 Shoes fit the ticket.

Cloudfoam shoes have specially designed foam insoles with foam sock liners. 

At first, I worried about how all of the foam might affect breathability. But they are actually very lightweight and breathable. 

I also like the slip-on design. The ankle collar is elastic, so I can slide them on without untying my laces.

Despite everything I love about the Cloudfoam Pure 2.0, I wish they had more arch support. 

The cushy sole makes them plenty comfortable, and they’re a dramatic improvement from Reeboks, which I used to travel in. 

But I hope Adidas will bump up the arch support in the future.

Overall, the Cloudfoam cushion makes them great shoes for walking.


  • Cloudfoam cushioning
  • Foam sock liners
  • Very breathable
  • Slip-on
  • Upper made with 50% recycled plastics


  • Not a lot of arch support
  • Color options are mostly black and white; no bright colors

#4 Hoka Clifton 9

Best Running Shoes for Travel

Product image for the Hoka Clifton 9 in black with rainbow details.

Materials: Upper from mostly recycled materials, rubber outsole

While I like Adidas Cloudfoam shoes for an all-around athletic style, Hoka Clifton 9s are my go-to if I plan to take advantage of the hotel treadmill. 

The first thing you’ll notice about the Hoka Clifton 9 running shoe is the cushion.

Maximum stack height provides more shock absorption when walking or running on hard pavement. 

Hoka Clifton 9’s balanced design encourages a natural gait, ideal for long walks. 

A stable structure with good arch support makes them suitable for people with high arches or flat feet. 

The best shoes for flat feet have enough arch support to prevent your foot from splaying too much.

Alternatively, if you’re looking for a running shoe for travel with a deeper heel-to-toe drop for running, I suggest the Cloudswift 3

I tested the Cloudswift 3 on a month-long Europe trip. They have good arch support, just like Hokas, and every step felt like I might leap into a sprint.

New Balance Fresh Foam sneakers are another popular running shoe among travelers. New Balance offers multiple styles of Fresh Foam, and they’re good for wide feet. 

But, New Balance shoes are not as versatile style-wise because they have so much branding.

Unfortunately, the Hoka, OnCloud, and New Balance are heavier than the other sneakers on this list. 

The Cliftons are lighter weight without compromising comfort, which makes them the best travel shoes for runners.

Read our complete guides to the best Hoka running shoes and Hoka walking shoes.


  • Breathable upper
  • Substantial arch support 
  • Shock absorption
  • Regular and wide options
  • Made from recycled materials


  • High price point
  • Larger walking shoe
  • Not as fashionable

#5 Loom Waterproof Sneakers

Best Waterproof Shoes for Travel

Product image for the Loom Waterproof Sneakers in white.

Materials: Merino wool

Loom Waterproof Sneakers take full advantage of merino wool’s water-repellent qualities. 

We tried Vessi’s waterproof Everyday Move Slip-Ons, but they’re not very breathable, which is ultimately why we decided against recommending them in this article.

Loom Waterproof Sneakers, on the other hand, are light and breathable thanks to the merino wool.

Just like in Allbirds and Woolloomooloos, the antibacterial merino-lined insoles help prevent odors.

I’m disappointed that Loom only offers these waterproof sneakers in black and white. 

Thankfully, the shoe design is cuter and more flexible than a lot of other waterproof shoes.

The snug, sock-like fit and waterproof knit upper help minimize leaking. 

Loom advertises that the shoe will keep your foot dry when fully submerged. 

This is, of course, dependent on how well the shoe secures around your ankle. . . and a little too hard to believe.

After all, water shoes are meant for full submersion and allow your foot to get wet. 

Shoes that are waterproof keep your feet dry–on land–when it’s rainy.

I personally need them for walking the dog through damp grass and cutting across muddy fields when I’m running late for the train.

Interested in more waterproof shoes? Read our guide to the best waterproof walking shoes.


  • Eco-friendly
  • Waterproof
  • Merino wool
  • Durable
  • Cute design


  • High price point

#6 Cariuma OCA Low

Best Vegan-Friendly Shoe for Travel

Product image for the Cariuma OCA Low in black with white soles.

Materials: Canvas upper, mamona oil, and cork sole

If you’re a fan of classic canvas sneakers, check out Cariuma’s OCA Low shoes. 

Cariuma’s are about the same price as Vans and Converse, but with a better ecological footprint. 

OCA Lows combine organic cotton canvas, natural rubber, recycled plastics, and a completely vegan insole.

There are tons of colors, from bright pink to yellow and navy blue.

But, of course, white canvas sneakers are some of the most versatile travel shoes for women. 

The OCA Low goes with almost any outfit and adds a cute casual look to dresses, which is why they’re one of my go-to shoes when I’m packing light. 

Keep in mind that the cork midsole is supportive but still might cause issues if you have foot problems.

You could wear these barefoot, but I always prefer to wear a pair of low-cut socks. The Allbirds Tree Skippers (listed next) look similar and are better sockless.


  • Eco friendly
  • Slip-resistant sole
  • Vegan insole
  • Multiple styles (leather and suede options–but then they’re no longer vegan)


  • Relatively flat shoe
  • Logo multiple spots on shoe design

#7 Allbirds Tree Skippers

Best Sockless Shoe for Travel

Product image for the Allbirds Tree Skippers in white.

Materials: Eucalyptus upper, wool or Eucalyptus insole

The Allbirds Tree Skippers are styled after deck shoes and feature a simple upper with flat outsoles. 

Tree Skippers are pricier than Cariuma’s OCA Low sneakers but have plenty of benefits. 

First off, Allbirds is also very eco-minded. Some of the insoles on the Tree Skippers are wool-lined (so they aren’t vegan), a natural and sustainable material.

Allbirds puts a lot of effort into carbon projects, though. They’re working on the first carbon-neutral shoe and sharing schematics so other companies can learn and advance their designs.

The breathable knit upper makes Allbirds Tree Skippers excellent for hot-weather vacations. 

And the wool-lined insoles make them comfortable for going sockless. 

Breathability helps mitigate stink, but I really appreciate that they’re machine washable.

If you’re in between the Cariumas and the Allbirds, check out the Allbirds Tree Pipers. They’re the perfect hybrid.


  • Committed to reducing carbon emissions
  • Simple design that goes with most outfits
  • Super lightweight
  • Breathable upper knit
  • Comfortable in warm weather
  • Suitable for sockless wearing
  • Machine Washable


  • Relatively flat shoe
  • Wool-lined insoles–not vegan
  • Pricey compared to similar-looking shoes

Stylish & Dressy Travel Shoes for Women

#8 VIVAIA Vienna Flat

Best Dress Shoes for Travel

Product image for the Vivaia Vienna Flat in black with white trim.

Materials: plastic water bottles, herbal insole 

Flats don’t take up as much space as sneakers and boots, but I still want to carry only one pair.

We’ve done extensive first-hand reviews of the best flats on the market, and one of our favorites is the VIVAIA Vienna Flat. 

The Vienna flats are flats that feel like sneakers–and they’re fit for miles of walking. 

VIVAIA is also dedicated to eco-friendly designs. They knit the upper of this shoe from recycled plastic bottles.

The toe box tapers into a sharp V-shape, but the upper knit offers stretch. I really appreciate this because I usually wear a wide-toe box, and V-toed shoes usually only fit narrow feet.

VIVAIA pairs the classic V-shape with a single contouring stripe to add a modern flair.

You’ll notice that the collar is very low on this shoe, which makes it virtually impossible to wear socks. 

Thankfully, VIVAIA added eco-friendly deodorizing insoles, which work surprisingly well.

These Vienna flats are the best travel shoes for getting dressed up and walking around a new city.

Read our detailed VIVAIA shoes review.


  • Machine washable
  • Quality construction
  • Moisture wicking
  • Flexible sole
  • Stylish flats
  • Comfortable walking shoe


  • V-shaped toe style may not be for everyone
  • Insoles flatten over time

#9 Allbirds Tree Breezers

Best Travel Flats 

Product image for the Allbirds Tree Breezers in dark grey.

Materials: Eucalyptus upper, wool or TENCIL insole

The Allbirds Tree Breezers are my favorite all-around cute, comfy, and lightweight flat. 

A lot of times, I travel with a capsule wardrobe of like-colored items that I can pair in several ways to create new outfits. 

As a fashion statement, a pair of brightly colored pink Tree Breezers adds a splash of excitement without bursting my suitcase. 

Allbirds has neutral colors as well as fun, limited-edition colors that cycle in and out. 

That said, if flashy footwear is your game, check out Tieks–just know that Tieks aren’t quite as comfortable from the get-go.

The Tree Breezer is soft and form-fitting, with a breathable mesh upper that uses Eucalyptus tree fibers and a sugarcane-derived outsole.

I also love that Tree Breezers are super lightweight and hold their shape even when I smash them into my carry-on.

The original Allbirds Tree Breezers have a rounded toe, but they’re also available with a pointed-toe box.

Read our detailed review of the Allbirds Tree Breezers, as well as our review of Birdies slippers if you’re looking for another supportive pair of flats.


  • Form-fitting
  • Very lightweight and packable
  • Sustainable materials
  • Machine washable with removable insoles
  • Comfortable
  • More support compared to most flats


  • A little on the pricey side

#10 Rothy’s Loafer

Best Travel Loafers

Product image for the Rothy’s Loafer in beige.

Materials: plastic water bottles

If you feel like branching out from ballet flats, it might be time to try Rothy’s Loafers.

We’ve been testing Rothy’s shoes for a couple of years now, and they’re another good option for stylish and versatile travel shoes for women. 

More casual than traditional ballet flats, but definitely dressier than sneakers, loafers are like moccasins that are slightly boxier than flats.

These Rothy’s are a good pair of shoes to wear around the Airbnb or hotel. Those floors are nasty, and I wear shoes to protect my feet.

If I’m traveling for business or a conference (and not planning to hike or walk 10 miles), I would pack a pair of Rothy’s Loafers and a pair of my favorite flats. 

The combination of two traditional–but very different–shoe styles adds dimension to my wardrobe.

Just like our other favorite eco-friendly flats, Rothy’s Loafers are made with high-tech materials. 

One pair of Rothy’s Loafers is made of about 13 plastic water bottles. They are very lightweight and packable thanks to their woven knit uppers.

Rothy’s Loafers also have a thick rubber sole that adds a little extra cushion and durability.

Read our complete Rothy’s shoes review.


  • Casual classic style
  • Thick rubber sole
  • Sustainable materials
  • Machine washable


  • Not much support
  • Not quite as dressy as flats

#11 Thursday Duchess Chelsea Boots

Best Travel Boots

Product image for the Thursday Duchess Chelsea Boots in black leather.

Materials: leather, rubber sole

I love Chelsea boots. Thursday Duchess Chelseas are quintessential, classy, and timeless boots.

The Duchess Chelseas are great boots for travel because they’re incredibly versatile; plus, they’re built with a solid outsole and prepared to tackle any type of terrain. 

Chelsea boots are much more versatile and easier to travel with than knee-high or equestrian-style boots. 

Duchess Chelsea boots are short enough to pack but tall enough to give the boot aesthetic value and protection in colder months.

My best friend travels with sneakers and a pair of Chelsea boots because she can wear them on hikes, around town, and out to dinner. 

At first, I was hesitant about Thursday boots because there are a lot of low-quality boot brands out there.

But we did a full review of Thursday boots, and the Duchess Chelsea style proved their worth.

Thursday boot’s 100% leather upper softens with age. They have a short break-in period, but after that, they’re comfy for exploring new cities.


  • Versatile
  • Dress up or down
  • Real leather upper
  • Sturdy
  • Slip-on walking shoe


  • Heavier shoe
  • Not waterproof

#12 Sorel Tivoli IV Boot

Best Waterproof Boots for Travel

Product image for the Sorel Tivoli IV Boot in grey.

Materials: waterproof suede, canvas, or PU-coated leather upper, faux fur lining, rubber outsole

When I fly home for Christmas, I need a stylish travel shoe that’s practical in wet, cold weather. 

I love the Sorel Tivoli IV boots because they’re fully waterproof and adorable. Tivoli IV boots have fuzzy insulation and thick rubber soles. 

These boots keep your feet warm on long walks when fashion still matters.

In backcountry conditions, I recommend finding a taller boot to protect from deep snow. Otherwise, Tivoli IVs are comfy for walking through a little snow or slush without looking like full-on mountain boots.

They’re too bulky to pack in my suitcase but stylish enough to wear while traveling. 

Just remember to go up a half-size to account for thick winter socks.


  • Very warm
  • Waterproof
  • Tall enough to handle a little snow
  • Stylish
  • Comfortable shoes with style


  • Heavier for packing
  • Not very dressy

Best Sandals & Flip Flops for Travel

#13 Teva Original Sandal

Best Travel Sandals

Product image for the Teva Original Sandal in grey.

Materials: Polyester straps, rubber sole

Let’s talk about Teva’s.

Teva Original Sandals are one of the most popular sandals out there, and people really enjoy wearing them when traveling. 

I’m always hesitant to wear anything open-toed when exploring a new city…but as far as sandals go, these are pretty secure with their hook-and-loop velcro closure.

People even use Teva’s as hiking sandals–so you know that means their grip is secure enough to handle the terrain you’re dealing with.

They’re well suited for water activities as well, so consider these if water is in your traveling future.

Interested in more sandal options? Read our guide to the best minimalist hiking sandals.


  • Breathable shoes
  • Rubber sole
  • Easy to take on and off
  • Comfortable for longer walks


  • Open shoe
  • No half sizes

#14 Sorel Ella II Sandal

Dressy Walking Sandals

Product photo for the Sorel Ella II Sandal in brown leather.

Materials: Gore elastic straps, full-grain leather 

I like to keep things simple when traveling. The Sorel Ella II Sandal is a stylish step up from Tevas. 

I’m picky about my sandals: I want straps that hold my foot in without rubbing. 

Ella II sandals have full-grain leather uppers with thick gore elastic straps that make them easy to slip on.

The best travel shoes for women can handle uneven ground like cobblestones or unkept sidewalks.

These Sorel sandals are flat without a wedge or heel. Plus, the outsole has impressive traction. 

Unfortunately, the flat sole doesn’t provide arch support. However, the Sorel Ella II’s EVA foam insoles and heel cushion mitigate heel pain.

I usually avoid foot fatigue by swapping in other shoes like sneakers or Tevas for more structure on big walking days.

Also, these Sorel sandals come in six colors, including a playful green Safari and Chalk with a metallic accent strap. 

My favorite is the Velvet and Tan because it goes with virtually any summer outfit.


  • Breathable
  • Rubber sole
  • Slip-on
  • Dressy or casual
  • EVA cushion and heel support


  • Open shoe 
  • Flat sole with no arch support

#15 Olukai Ohana

Best Travel Flip-Flop

Product photo for the Olukai Ohana in black.

Materials: Water-resistant straps, rubber sole

I’m guilty of thinking flip-flops were flimsy and insecure shoes.

But Olukai changed my mind.

The Olukai Ohana is a best-selling flip flop with a supportive footbed that mimics the natural feeling of standing in wet sand.

Olukai is a Hawaiian company that designs shoes for water lovers to wear day in and day out.

Ohanas are the best travel flip-flops because they’re comfortable enough to wear beyond the beach. 

The toe pad is extra wide, so there’s enough space for toes to spread throughout a full day of walking naturally. 

These aren’t your Dollar Tree flip-flops: they cost a pretty penny. But they’re supportive sandals built to last.

They also float–an important quality out on the water.


  • Rubber outsole
  • Water resistant straps
  • Quick dry
  • Soft nylon toe post
  • Float
  • Wide toe box


  • Casual appearance
  • No half sizes

Best Hiking Travel Shoes for Women

#16 Merrell Siren Edge 3

Best Travel Hiking Shoes

Product photo for the Merrell Siren Edge 3 in light grey.

Materials: Mesh and 3D-printed upper, rubber outsole

Hiking shoes are the perfect stepping stone between sneakers and heavy hiking boots. 

We’ve tested a lot of hiking gear at TAH, and Merrells are a team favorite. The Merrell Siren Edge 3 hiking shoe has the traction and structure of a hiking boot without the weight.

Siren Edges are still bulkier than running shoes but way more versatile than a full boot. 

Merrell Siren Edge 3’s redesigned midsole has improved springiness but is otherwise the same as the beloved Edge 2.

Do keep in mind that hiking shoes aren’t that comfortable on pavement. They’re built with nobby traction for dirt and rocks. 

I find hiking sandals like Tevas or Chacos to be more versatile if I’m traveling in a hot climate. 

After all, we outdoorsy gals aren’t afraid of a little mud between our toes–my friend actually climbed a volcano in Chacos! 

That being said, go with hiking shoes if you’ll be in a cooler environment or if you want more protection.


  • Supportive
  • Much lighter than hiking boots
  • Could pass as athletic shoes
  • Robust traction
  • Foot protection


  • Heavier than sneakers
  • Not waterproof

#17 Columbia Newton Ridge

Best Travel Hiking Boots

Product photo for the Columbia Newton Ridge in brown leather.

Materials: Waterproof leather and synthetic upper, rubber sole 

The Columbia Newton Ridge is a solid pair of hiking boots.

They look good and offer plenty of support without the price tag that accompanies a lot of other hiking brands.

Yet, Columbia didn’t skip on material quality. Newton Ridge hiking boots have a full-grain leather exterior and mesh tongue. 

They’ll be comfortable walking shoes, but just like the hiking shoes, Columbia designed Newton Ridges with the trail in mind. 

The outsoles are rubber with multi-terrain traction fit for hardcore hiking. 

Having extra ankle support is my favorite part about traveling with hiking boots. I like the security when my ankles are tired after a long day of walking. 

Of course, the main downside to traveling with hiking boots is that they’re bulky. 

Newton Ridge boots aren’t as big as some, but they’re still harder to pack and less versatile than other travel shoes for women.

Pro Tip: Try new lace-up patterns to adjust the fit of your hiking boots. My feet have been much happier since I learned the Window lacing pattern.

Looking for lighter hiking shoe options? Read our guide to the best barefoot hiking boots.


  • Secure shoe
  • Waterproof
  • Arch support
  • Toe and ankle protection
  • Suitable for multiple types of terrain


  • Hiking boot style/appearance 
  • Heavy/bulky

Buying Guide: How to Choose the Best Travel Shoes and What to Look For

A young, light-haired woman in a blue sweater , white pants, pink Allbirds, and Minnie Mouse ears poses in front of the entrance to Disney California Adventure.

Comfort vs. Fashion

We all know the struggle of comfort vs. fashion when it comes to walking shoes. 

I suggest taking a minimum of two pairs of shoes. All of my shoes have pros and cons–sometimes for competing reasons.

Taking two pairs of comfortable shoes gives you room to play with style a little bit more. 

The first shoe in my bag is always a sneaker like the Allbirds Tree Runners or the Hoka Clifton 9 shoes. 

After that, I’ll choose shoes that are a little more fashionable, like the VIVAIA Vienna Flat or Sorel Ella II Sandal.

As with this list, my goal is to create a balance of comfort and style.

Destination and Travel Style

Your destination determines the type of travel shoes you need. Are you going on a beach vacation? Or are you skiing in the mountains?

If you plan to explore sunny places like some California islands, prioritize sandals like Tevas. And if you’re celebrating Christmas at Lake Tahoe, go for cozy boots like Sorel’s Tivoli IV.

I tend to overpack, so I bring a few options. You can get away with two very versatile pairs of shoes, though. 

Additionally, consider your travel schedule–do you prefer long days of walking or taking short breaks at the Airbnb every few hours?

Maybe you can get away with a less comfortable shoe if you’re taking frequent breaks.

Versatility and Durability

The most important aspect of a travel shoe is its durability. 

There’s no time to deal with shoes falling apart on a trip–you need a pair of reliable walking shoes for travel.  

Versatility is especially important if you’re traveling with only a few pairs. Try to pick shoes that go with as many of your outfits as possible.

Lightweight & Easily Packable

I prefer to travel with just a carry-on, so I need to keep things lightweight and compact. Materials like wool and recycled plastic knit are super light. 

They’re also particularly good at holding their shape, even after a 10-hour flight.

FAQs About Travel Shoes for Women

A woman wearing black shorts, a brown tank top, and black sandals seen from a distance in profile leaning against a stone wall with an Italian cityscape in the background.

Which footwear is best for travel?

When picking out travel shoe brands, look for features like arch support, midsole cushioning, and overall durability.  

After all, the best travel shoes are good walking shoes. 

The best travel shoe for a tour of European cities may differ from the best travel shoe for a California beach or hiking trip.

No matter where you’re going, make sure you choose comfortable shoes. The more trips you take, the more travel shoes you’ll add to your collection. 

Is it OK to wear sneakers in Europe?

Yes, yes, and yes! So many people wear sneakers in Europe, including tourists and Europeans alike.

In fact, I’d argue that Europeans know how to style a sneaker better than most. 

Sneakers are very welcome across the ocean, and thank goodness because running shoes can also make great walking shoes. 

How many pairs of shoes should I bring on vacation?

Ever heard of the rule of three or the ‘3 shoe rule’? 

This is the idea that you should pack at most three pairs of shoes for any trip. For example, a pair of sneakers, a pair of flats, and a pair of heels. In the winter, swap out accordingly (like flats for boots). 

The main point here is limiting yourself to about three pairs of shoes. 

If you’re traveling for an extended period of time and have extra space, by all means, take as many shoes as you see fit.  

But if you’re headed to a new place for a week or so…realistically, you won’t need more than three.

Wondering how to best pack your shoes in your bag? Check out this helpful video:

What type of footwear is best to avoid trips and falls?

Shoes with grippy soles are the best footwear for avoiding trips and falls.

Often, these are running shoes or hiking shoes, but a supportive sandal can sometimes have a lot of traction, too.

Trail running shoes also make some of the best travel shoes with traction. 

Make sure your shoes fit right. I tend to buy shoes that are too long to compensate for my wide feet, and then I trip constantly.

Having walking shoes that fit well will make each step more confident.

Is it better to wear sneakers and sandals on a plane?

You’re allowed to wear any shoes on an airplane, and it’s up to your personal preference.

I always opt for a fully covered shoe like a sneaker or boot when going through the airport or on an airplane (depending on the season and space I have in my bag). 

Not only do my feet feel more protected from any potential dirt or germs, but wearing your bulkiest shoe while you’re traveling saves space in your bag.

However, sandals are convenient if you have to take your shoes off at airport security.

Conclusion: Our Pick for the Best Travel Shoes

The lower half of a woman wearing a yellow sweater, jeans, and pink Allbirds sitting on a wicker patio chair.

This was a hard choice to make because each shoe on this list has its advantages (these really are the best travel shoes for women).

I’ve done so much traveling in my Chelsea boots, and I always have a sandal tan in summer.

But the Allbirds Tree Runners win the top title because they are the most versatile travel shoes on this list. We even asked Reddit and the most recommended shoe was Allbirds (and flats of some kind were also advised, with Tieks as the top option there.)

Tree Runners are comfortable for miles of walking, day after day. 

The Sweetfoam sole offers support, while the eucalyptus fiber upper knit ensures breathability. 

Plus, Tree Runners look just as good with a pair of jeans in winter as they do with jean shorts on a tropical hike.

Of course, sneakers aren’t dressy enough for a fancy dinner, but that doesn’t worry me too much. Packing an extra pair of flats won’t take up much space in my bag.

Lastly, Allbirds has a no-questions-asked 30-day return policy. 

Keep all of the tags intact and take a walk. If they don’t fit, send them back within 30 days of your purchase date for a refund.

There you have it! I hope that this guide to choosing the best travel shoes helps you feel ready to pick out new shoes for your next adventure.


Monroe Dziersk smiling as she poses high up above the skyline

Monroe Dziersk

Monroe Dziersk was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois. She was quickly drawn to the Southeastern coast of the United States after discovering a world outside of Midwest winters. While attending Elon University, she studied abroad in Florence, Italy. A switch was flipped, and she quickly fell in love with European culture and lifestyle.

Now, she lives in Italy and is always on the hunt for stylish, comfortable shoes that can hold up on cobblestones. She has traveled to more than 20 countries and plans to continue the tally while looking stylish.

Looking for more shoe and travel recommendations? Check out my related posts below!

Atoms Shoes Review

Best Rothy’s Alternatives

Best Allbirds Alternatives

Best Tieks Alternatives

Best Shoes for Disneyland

Best Water Shoes for Kayaking

Best Wool Shoes

Best Travel Pants for Women

Best Travel Purses

Best Travel Backpacks for Women

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Hi, I'm Mimi! I'm an outdoorsy Californian who has spent over 28 years immersed in the incredible natural beauty that California has to offer. My goal is to inspire others to get out and find their next adventure in California. Whether it’s escaping to an alpine lake in the Sierras, finding peace among the giant redwoods, or road tripping down the PCH, there’s always more to explore in this beautiful state.


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