Not all pants are created equal, and that often becomes most obvious when men travel. Long plane rides, a heavy schedule of outdoor activities after they reach their destination, or business meetings and sales calls – all demand different things from a pair of pants.
Travel pants offer the versatility and comfort that help make being away from home less challenging. They’ve also become more popular than ever, and we think it’s essential to take an in-depth look at the best travel pants for men.
We’ll review the best travel pants, including Unionbay’s Rainier Travel Tech Chinos , look at some tips for wearing them as well as different types, and even offer up some useful travel accessories.
First, let’s look at some travel pant buying tips.
Table of Contents
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|Unionbay Men’s Rainier Lightweight Travel Tech Chino Pants||Check on Amazon →|
|Stretch Zion Pants||Check on Amazon →|
|Columbia Silver Ridge Cargo Pants||Check on Amazon →|
|Van Heusen Slim-fit Stretch Flat Front Traveler Pant||Check on Amazon →|
|Outdoor Research Men’s Ferrosi Pants||Check on Amazon →|
|Prana Brion Wrinkle-resistant Stretch Pants||Check on Amazon →|
|Haggar Premium No-iron Expandable Waist Pant||Check on Amazon →|
|Oliver Apparel 4-way Stretch Commuter Passage Pant||Check on Amazon →|
|Clothin Elastic-waist Cargo Travel Pant||Check on Amazon →|
Before you buy: 7 Things to consider when purchasing travel pants
So, what separates the best travel pants from all the rest? It’s important to know because you’ll have a lot of choices when it’s time to buy a pair for you.
1. The fabric
Travel pants can consist of all kinds of fabrics, from cotton to polyester to nylon, to spandex, to a mix of materials.
Most of them consist of nylon or polyester, however, with either a small amount of spandex or elastane for extra stretch and flexibility.
The only issue with nylon blends is that they’re typically hotter than other types of fabrics. Cotton blends with polyester provide superior breathability, but cotton (and wool) doesn’t dry as quickly as nylon and polyester.
Travel pants should offer enough stretch to keep you comfortable even when you’re jammed into a plane seat during a long flight. Polyester with a blend of spandex provides plenty of flexibility when used in the construction of travel pants.
Stretchier fabrics also work best for travel pants that have a slim cut and design. Otherwise, those cuts and designs may become too tight and not be nearly as comfortable as you deserve.
No one wants to sweat all day or be uncomfortably warm when traveling, so choose your travel pants accordingly. Breathability refers to how well the air circulates within the pants to help keep you fresh.
Most travel pants are long pants, so maintaining proper air circulation is a must.
When you travel a lot and live out of a suitcase, you have to pack intelligently to save space while still making sure you have everything you need. That includes packing two to three pants that you can use for the entire journey and every occasion.
In our reviews that follow, we’ll mention pants that are good for outdoor enthusiasts, those for casual wear, and even those you can wear in work settings.
Your trip may include a trip to a nice restaurant, hiking, or time spent in a business meeting; you need pants that suit every scenario.
You know how pants and shirts can look when stuffed in a suitcase for an extended period. While there are ways you can pack a suitcase or carry-on to minimize wrinkling, there’s still a bit of luck involved.
You’ll make it easier on yourself by choosing travel pants that show the least amount of wrinkles or even claim to be wrinkle-free.
Pockets are essential, even if you’d rather not have them be so obvious – like on cargo pants (which you can use for travel pants, by the way). You need pockets to carry your wallet, identification cards, phone, change, room keys, and more.
Zippered pockets protect against pickpockets and, in general, the deeper the pockets, the better.
Travel pants that include hidden security pockets are beneficial. The last things you want to lose while traveling are your I.D. cards or passport and, let’s face it, not every destination is as safe as another.
7. Water resistance
It’s nice to have pants that are resistant to sudden downpours or won’t get ruined when you’re on the hiking trail and encounter wet conditions … or when you spill wine at a nice dinner.
It also helps if they’re quick-drying because A) you’re either going to continue to wear the same pants until they dry or B) need them the next day.
Let’s move on to our reviews of the best travel pants for men.
The 9 best travel pants for men 2020
- Quick-drying fabric
The best travel pants for:
- Men on a budget
Finding an affordable pair of travel chinos isn’t always easy. Finding a pair that’s affordable and of high quality is also tricky.
Fortunately, Unionbay has just what men on a budget need with its Rainier Lightweight Comfort Travel Tech Chino Pants. While they come with a lower price tag than many other travel chinos, that certainly doesn’t mean they’re cheap.
You’ll like these pants for a lot of reasons, including:
- They’re among the best quick-dry travel pants thanks to a fabric that consists of 94% nylon and 6% spandex. They’re also water-resistant.
- They’re lightweight.
- Their nylon-spandex blend provides just the right amount of stretch that allows for a full range of motion.
- They have a UPF 50 rating, which means you could wear them hiking if you choose.
The Rainier Lightweight Comfort Travel Tech Chinos also features a slim silhouette and stylish design that’s appropriate for many occasions.
- Quick-dry and water-repellant fabric keeps you dry and comfortable.
- The fit is true to size and allows for plenty of ease of movement.
- It’s hard to beat the price for a pair of quality travel pants.
- The pockets aren’t as functional as some other travel pants.
Unionbay’s Rainier Travel Tech chinos offer everything you’d expect from a quality pair of travel pants at a budget-friendly price.
- Roll-up legs
The best travel pants for:
Men looking for a versatile, always-comfortable pair of travel pants.
PrAna’s Stretch Zion pants have you covered, literally and figuratively, for a variety of activities as you travel. While often referred to as a hiking pant, they’re also ideal for a lot of uses not necessarily connected to the great outdoors.
They are casual, no question, and feature a rugged, simple design that pairs well with many different types of clothing.
Their ruggedness comes, in part, from an abrasion-resistant finish that will continue to look good even if you use them multiple times during your travels.
They feature quick-dry Stretch Zion woven fabric that is water-repellent and has a UPF 50+ finish that keeps you cool, dry, and protected on the sunniest of days.
Other key features include an adjustable waistband and ventilated inseam gusset made from 97% nylon and 3% spandex. You’ll also appreciate the superior ventilation around your man parts – which is always a good thing, right?
Last but not least, they feature a roll-up leg that has snaps so you can adjust the length to your preference.
- They come with a cargo pocket that’s great for storing personal items.
- They’re durable and abrasion-resistant, which makes them great for outdoor activities such as hiking and climbing.
- They come in a variety of different colors.
- Maybe not for you if you prefer a more streamlined look.
PrAna’s Stretch Zion pants keep you cool and comfortable wherever and however you travel. They’re excellent for the great outdoors, but also suitable for many other occasions.
- Great for active lifestyles
- Many helpful features
- Moisture-wicking technology
The best travel pants for:
Men who want a quality pair of cargo pants for travel
Like the Outdoor Research Ferrosi Pants we’ll review in a bit, Columbia’s Silver Ridge Cargo Pants are excellent for travelers who enjoy outdoor adventures.
They certainly have all the features you’d expect from a pair of travel pants you can use for hiking, cycling, and the like, including Omni-Shade UPF 50 fabric that offers maximum protection against the sun, as well as plenty of durabilities.
The Silver Ridge Cargo Pants consist of 100% nylon and are lightweight and very comfortable. They have plenty of pockets, which you’d expect from a cargo pant, including a zip-closure security pocket, side pockets, and mesh pocket bags for added convenience.
We also love travel pants that have moisture-wicking technology and the Silver Ridge Cargo Pants come with Columbia’s unique Omni-Wick technology that moves moisture away from the skin.
It moves it into the fabric quickly, where it spreads across the surface and then evaporates.
You’ll appreciate the flexibility and full range of movement provided by these pants, while the material is soft and comfortable.
- Six different pockets offer all the storage space you’ll need.
- They aren’t water-resistant, but they are quick-drying.
- Features such as Omni-Shade and Omni-Wick technology helps set these travel pants apart from the rest.
- Check the sizing carefully.
While not marketed as “travel” pants, Columbia’s Silver Ridge Cargo pants are great for any man who enjoys outdoor activities as he travels.
- Cooling technology
- Natural stretch
- Easy care
The best travel pants:
For business travelers on the go
You should always strive to look your best when traveling, not the least of which is if you’re a business traveler. The last thing you want is to walk into a meeting or conference while wearing pants that look as if you rolled them in a ball before putting them on.
Fortunately, travel pants such as Van Heusen’s Slim-fit Stretch Pants help you to avoid the issue, although we still don’t recommend that you roll your pants into a ball. The Van Heusen travel pants feature anti-wrinkle properties, and you’ll never need to iron them.
And they offer more, including temperature-activated technology that helps keep you fresh when the temperatures rise. They also feature technology that wicks moisture away from the skin to help keep you dry and comfortable.
Additionally, they have anti-microbial technology that eliminates odor-causing bacteria that can lead to some cringe-worthy, embarrassing moments.
Another thing we like about these pants is how easy they are to care for, i.e., they’re not only wrinkle-resistant with a non-iron finish (they consist of 100% polyester), but also have a soil-release finish that helps eliminate stains and dirt from the fabric.
- They’re part of Van Heusen’s Traveler Collection that’s designed for easy, versatile wear no matter where you are.
- They come in a modern, slim fit that’s stylish and look good for many occasions.
- Their natural stretch fabric moves along with your body’s natural movements to enhance the overall comfort.
- The length may run somewhat short.
A good pair of business travel pants isn’t always easy to find, but Van Heusen’s Traveler Collection includes just such a pair with it Slim-Fit Flat-Front Traveler pants. They’re comfortable and easy to care for.
The best travel pants for:
Travelers who lead an active lifestyle
If your travel itinerary includes outdoor adventures such as hiking – and even climbing – you should consider purchasing Outdoor Research’s Men’s Ferrosi Pants.
We like the Ferrosis for a lot of reasons, including that they provide excellent wind and water-resistance. They’re warm enough to ward off chills when temperatures start to drop, but also lightweight enough to offer a full range of movement.
The men’s Ferrosi Pants consist of a soft-shell fabric blend that’s flexible and stretchy, and they retain their shape very well. They allow for smooth movement, which is ideal for the hiking trail or while climbing.
Other features include plenty of pockets, including a zippered pocket on the side of the thigh, and drawstrings on the ankles that allow you to pull them to any length.
The drawstrings also help to secure the pants around your ankles as you bike, or to ensure that the pants won’t ride up on you when you climb.
- They provide an excellent range of motion that mirrors your natural movements.
- They’re very breathable pants and help keep you cool and dry.
- They’re tough and abrasion-resistant.
- The pockets are a bit small.
While the Outdoor Research Ferrosi Pants aren’t suitable for all occasions, they’re excellent for travelers who enjoy outdoor adventures.
The best travel pants for:
Men looking for the best value for a good pair of travel pants
Back to the folks at PrAna, who seem to know a thing or two about making high-quality travel pants. We talked about their Stretch Zion pants earlier, but they offer another excellent pair with their Brion Wrinkle-Resistant Stretch pants.
The Brion is similar to the Stretch Zion in that it’s made with the same fabric – 97% nylon and 3% spandex – that makes them exceptionally lightweight and breathable.
They’re also very durable and built for outdoor adventures such as climbing and hiking, or any other activity in which pants get scuffed up a bit.
The good news, though, is that they won’t get scuffed because they’re abrasion-resistant, which means you can wear them several times throughout your travels.
They feature a classic look with 5-pocket styling and come in a simple design that’s available in several neutral colors.
Other features include a water-repellent finish that’s also quick to dry, and UPF 50+ protection that helps keep you cool and dry on the sunniest of days. They’re ideal for the outdoors, but look nice enough to wear when hanging out in the city or for casual outings.
And, as the name suggests, they’re wrinkle-resistant, which is always an essential feature for travel pants that may get tucked away in a suitcase or carry-on for several hours at a time.
- The PrAna Brions have a classic style with a slim-fit design that looks good anywhere.
- They keep you protected and dry in the great outdoors.
- They’re rugged enough to handle outdoor activities such as hiking, climbing, and cycling.
- The fabric is perhaps a bit thin.
PrAna deserves another entry in our reviews with their Brion travel pants. They’re a good value and have everything you need to enhance your travel experience.
- Expandable waistband
The best travel pants for:
Men looking for a quality business casual pant
The No-Iron Expandable Waist travel pants are relatively new in the Haggar line, and they’re a great addition. The check a lot of boxes regarding what qualifies as better-than-the-rest pants.
For starters, they feature a comfortable fit that provides the stretchiness and flexibility you need. They’re made from a 61% cotton, 37% polyester, and 2% spandex blend and feature an expandable waistband for additional comfort.
The waistband provides about two to three inches of stretch and creates some extra room if you need it. They’re also lightweight and feature a dressier design than many other travel pants.
You don’t need to iron them either, another big plus, and you can pull them from the washer or dryer without worrying about wrinkles.
They feature a plain front with slash front pockets and two back welt pockets with buttons, as well as a button closure at the waist.
- They don’t fade and continue to look like new even after multiple washings.
- They offer just the right amount of stretch in the waistband.
- The business casual, yet dressy, design makes them suitable for work and social outings when you travel.
- Some reviewers wish they had a second inner front pocket.
Haggar’s No-Iron Expandable Waist pants have a business casual look while offering all the comfort you need as you travel.
The best travel pants for:
Men who do a lot of long-distance traveling
A good pair of travel pants should look and feel good no matter what type of trip you take. Oliver’s Passage Pants are just that, but it’s hard to beat them regarding long-distance travel.
With their 4-way stretch, which means the fabric stretches and recovers width-wise and length-wise, the Passage Pants are the best travel pants for long flights and among the most comfortable men’s pants for flying.
Made from 91% nylon and 9% spandex (for that extra bit of stretch), these travel pants provide a full range of motion while helping you to kick back and enjoy a long flight no matter where you sit or how cramped you feel.
They also have a gusseted crotch that doesn’t hinder their overall freedom of movement, either.
You’ll appreciate the lightweight feel of those pants, as well as overall comfort that helps separate them from lower quality travel pants. Here’s another plus: they feature a soft waistline button made of metal, but one that doesn’t dig into your waistline.
Meanwhile, some users say you don’t need a belt as long as you have the right fit from the start.
All in all, the comfort level is on par with your favorite pair of jeans, but the Passage Pants are stylish enough to wear for many occasions as you travel.
- The 4-way stretch gives you a full range of motion, including during long flights.
- The fabric is breathable and wrinkle-resistant.
- There’s an internal pocket that you can use to store your wallet securely.
- They only have one secure zippered pocket.
Oliver has the traveler in mind with its popular Passage Pants. They look and feel great, and even come at a reasonable price.
- Soft feel
- Nice stretch
The best travel pants for:
Men who want superior comfort in men’s cargo travel pants.
Another pair of cargo pants to make our list is the Elastic-Waist Travel Pant by Clothin. The latter is a company devoted to developing high-performance outwear and equipment, and their cargo pants deserve a place in our reviews for many reasons.
We’ll start with the most prominent features, including their multiple pockets, which you’d expect from cargo pants. The Clothin cargoes have six pockets in all, including two handwarmer zipper pockets that are handy when your travels take you to colder climates.
There’s also a side pocket with a zipper closure that helps provide extra security for our belongings.
There’s a lot more to like about these pants, including their comfort. They feature a 90% nylon and 10% spandex blend that’s lightweight and very breathable.
The spandex helps to give you unrestricted freedom of movement, whether you’re on the go or taking a stroll through your favorite city.
You’ll also appreciate an elastic waistband that provides a close fit without feeling too binding at your midsection. And Clothin’s Travel Pants have a slim, straight fit that creates a nice look.
- They’re durable-yet-lightweight pants that hold up to the rigors of travel.
- They’re made of quick-drying material that’s also water-repellent.
- They’re easy to pack without worrying about wrinkles.
- The fit may run a little large
Clothin’s Elastic-Waist Cargo Pants earn a lot of 5-star reviews on Amazon, and it’s easy to see why. You’ll appreciate their quality and craftsmanship.
7 Tips to keep in mind when wearing travel pants
The popularity of travel pants has expanded the horizons regarding when and how to wear them. Many men wear them in their everyday lives, not just when they travel because they offer the ideal balance between casual but not too casual.
In general, however, keep a few things in mind when wearing travel pants.
1. Own your style
Have a clear sense of what your trip is going to entail. If you’re going to spend a lot of time engaged in outdoor activities such as hiking, rafting, climbing, etc., then choose your travel pants accordingly.
A smart pair of business casual pants, such as Haggar’s No-Iron pants, wouldn’t be – or shouldn’t be – your first choice if you’re an active man.
If your trip entails a slew of business meetings and conferences, then it’s best not to show up in a pair of multi-pocketed cargo pants.
2. Embrace versatility
While certain travel pants fit some occasions better than others, it’s a plus if you can rock a pair of versatile travel pants that are presentable and comfortable enough to wear on the plane, to a nice restaurant, to sightseeing, and more.
3. Choose wrinkle-free
No man should sport a pair of wrinkled trousers unless he never plans to leave the house. That’s why it’s crucial to choose wrinkle-free travel pants that can handle being crammed in a carry-on bag, suitcase, or backpack.
Not only is it hard to find an iron during vacation, but you also may not have the time to iron, anyway.
4. Dress for the weather
If you plan to visit a warm (or hot) weather getaway, which many men choose to do in the dead of winter, opt for a pair of breathable and moisture-wicking pair of chinos rather than jeans or pants made from heavier materials.
Jeans and the like are better options for cooler and colder climates.
Of course, if you’re a business traveler, you need to dress for success, so to speak, depending on your kind of work and potential dress codes. The weather isn’t as important of a factor in those cases.
5. Matching color
In general, dark colors are better for traveling. They don’t show dirt and grime as much as lighter colors, and they look dressier overall. Light colors are cooler in warm weather, however. If you’re unsure, stick with neutral colors.
6. Know the country or region
Unless you want to look like a stereotypical tourist, it’s good to have an understanding of the dress “norms” of your destination.
Europeans, for example, tend to dress better than North Americans, who often opt for a decidedly casual style. Europeans rarely wear shorts, except for the gym or beach.
7. Not too tight and not too garish
While many travel pants, including several that we reviewed above, feature a slim cut and design. But be careful that they’re not too tight; a relaxed fit is better and has the added benefit of being more comfortable than pants that fit like a second skin.
Also, neutral colors – rather than bold and loud – coordinate well with most shirts and shoes.
5 Types of travel pants
What are travel pants? As our reviews show, travel pants can be many things, and not always easy to define. They come in various shapes and fabrics and include features designed to make travel easier.
In general, travel pants are of a lighter weight than regular pants, more breathable, easy to pack (and wrinkle-resistant), and versatile to wear for different occasions. They can also be of the following types:
1. Travel jeans
While traditional denim jeans are as popular as ever, they have a few “flaws” that can make them less-than-ideal for travel. They can become too warm in destinations where the heat can soar, and they’re slow to dry if you get them wet for some reason.
Travel jeans, however, consists of materials – such as lightweight spandex blends – that are breathable, wick moisture, and have a nice stretch to them. And, they’re still very durable, just like denim jeans.
2. Performance travel pants
Performance travel pants, including performance chinos, represent an all-around category that suits most travelers. They may feature classic khaki styling and be versatile enough to wear for outdoor pursuits such as hiking.
They may also include pockets inside the main zippers to help keep your belongings safe.
3. Cargo pants
While many men’s fashion experts don’t like the way how cargo pants look, they’re still a pant of choice for many travelers. You’ll recognize cargo pants by their many pockets, some of them deep enough to hold a small computer (OK, so maybe not that deep).
4. Convertible travel pants
Convertible travel pants are a jack-of-all-trades of men’s apparel.
After all, you can wear them as full-length pants or convert them to shorts thanks to discreet zippers around the knees. If nothing else, they can help you to save space in your luggage thanks to their two-in-one style.
5. Business travel pants
Not all travel pants are suitable for business meetings or the boardroom.
Business travel pants have the look of traditional dress pants but consist of material, such as polyester blends, that are wrinkle and moisture-resistant and easy to care for when you’re on the road.
They’re also versatile enough to wear to more casual outings.
10 Useful travel accessories
No matter what type of travel you do – business or vacation – you want to make the occasion as stress-free as possible. Having the right accessories, such as those we list here, can make all the difference:
Unless you prefer to pack your toiletry items separate from one another, not many do, then you need a toiletry bag (sometimes known as a Dopp kit).
Letherology’s Multi-Pocket Hanging toiletry bag has all the space you need to hold toiletry items, and it also hangs easily on a towel hook.
Protecting your passport, ID cards, and other forms of personal account information is essential when you travel. GDTK’s Leather Passport Holder Cover Case has a lightweight, slim design with RFID blocking technology to protect personal information.
Another excellent product with RFID blocking technology is Zoppen’s Multi-Purpose Travel Wallet. It includes room for a passport, boarding pass, credit cards, ID, and even a cellphone pouch.
Shoes can get dirty and dusty during a long trip, and it’s a good idea to keep them away from your other clothing. Yamiu’s Travel Shoe Bags allow you to do that; you can even use them in your gym bag for transporting shoes for your workouts.
You can save a lot of time and hassle with TSA-approved luggage locks, especially as you’re going through airport inspection. Forge’s Cable Luggage Locks feature alloy bodies that offer exceptional durability.
The folks at Forge are so confident in the toughness of their locks that they’ll replace them or provide a refund if you find a way to break them.
A good set of luggage tags can include your contact information as well as provide an easy way to identify your bags in airports and hotels. TravelMore’s Luggage tags do both and consist of durable, bendable PVC silicone material.
Staying “connected” can be a challenge when you’re traveling – especially when you’re traveling abroad. The GlocalMe G4 4G Mobile Hotspot provides reliable, ultra-fast 4G internet.
Walking into a business meeting with scuffed and dirty shoes is never a good look. Jason Mark makes it easy to keep your shoes looking their best when you’re traveling.
The Bestek Universal Travel Adapter makes it possible to convert voltage in different countries, including faraway places such as Australia. Plus, it can charge seven devices simultaneously.
Suitcase straps help keep your luggage secure and easy to identify. BlueCosto’s straps are of high quality.
How we chose these travel pants for our reviews
What are the perfect travel pants? While there may not be a “perfect” anything, we’re confident we chose some of the highest-quality travel pants for our review.
How we chose them came down to several factors, such as:
- Features (such as pockets)
We also wanted to offer a variety of pants that fit different occasions. Some travel pants are better than others for outdoor activities, but we didn’t want to exclude pants that meet the needs of business travelers.
We also considered the price of the pants and always want to include products that fit the budget of every man.
Last, but never least, we researched the reviews of others – particularly potential customers like you – to get a sense of the strengths and weaknesses of each pair of pants.
Travel is often challenging enough without having to worry if you’ve dressed properly for the occasion. Travel pants offer versatility and comfort to help make your travel experience more comfortable, and it’s easy to find a pair that best suits your needs.
What are your thoughts? Do you prefer a particular brand and style of travel pants? What do you like about them? We always welcome your feedback.
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