Be it business or pleasure, travel is picking up again. Carefully packing your luggage can help you stay calm, cool, and collected throughout your trip. Follow these tips for what to bring when you take your style on the road this summer.
Start with some rules of thumb. Not everything you bring will meet these criteria, but keep the following packing strategies in mind:
- Look for wrinkle-free or wrinkle-resistant fabrics to save time and avoid the hassle of ironing.
- Stick with one group of colors as much as possible to maximize pairing options and minimize space.
- Prioritize lightweight, breathable fabrics for summer comfort and packing ease.
- Coordinate layers so that you stay prepared for the inevitable chilly situation.
- Aim for multifunctional pieces to dress up or down.
- Limit shoes and accessories to essentials.
- Pack workout clothes that are sweat-wicking, odor-fighting, or antimicrobial and antibacterial for multiple wearings.
- Consider not just practicalities but men’s summer fashion trends as well.
Shirts and Jackets
Image via Flickr by John Beans
Pack staple shirts in cotton or linen, such as T-shirts, button-downs, and polos. You can style them for casual or dressy situations. Consider adding a blazer, which can serve as your layering piece when you need warmth and can upgrade your look instantly. If you’ve chosen your travel color palette well, the blazer can go with any of your shirts and add polish whether you’re in shorts, jeans, or chinos. You’ll also want a hoodie or shell jacket for maximum comfort during downtime.
Pants and Shorts
Jeans are heavy in a suitcase, but go ahead, bring them anyway. Just select nice ones, dark-wash if you have a pair. They’ll be far more versatile on your trip than your ripped, faded go-to pair. Pack chinos, too, even if your trip doesn’t include business. Chinos will pair with all the shirts you’ve packed, and if you encounter a no-jeans scenario, you’ll be happy you have them.
You’ll also need shorts, of course. Go for this recommendation for travel shorts: Bermuda and cargo. One pair of each should cover it. Bermuda shorts are a dress-them-up-or-down classic that will probably carry you through half your trip. And while cargo shorts are less versatile as a mix-and-match item, there’s no denying they’re handy for a man on the road.
Shoes and Accessories
Shoes take more than their share of space in your bag, so you need to exercise discipline here. Three pairs should handle your needs:
- Loafers or leather slip-ons for business and dressier occasions.
- Sandals for comfort in the heat.
- Sneakers in excellent condition for both exercise and casual wear.
Toss in no-show or ankle socks to wear with all three.
You’ll need a belt, sunglasses, maybe a cap for the sun, and a watch. Try to limit yourself to one of each. When you reach your destination, you won’t miss the ones you left home.
What’s most satisfying about applying a little strategic planning to your packing is that you can wear everything you bring with almost everything else. Your jeans, chinos, and shorts will all work with your tees, polos, and button-downs. The blazer and shoes can take your look the way it needs to go. Your bag will be lighter than you thought possible. You’ve achieved packing perfection. It’s time to enjoy the journey.
Photo by Vadim Sherbakov