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Travel walking shoes can mean different things for people. For some, it can be a soft and lightweight pair, like bedroom slippers, which they can barely feel on their feet while others prefer something with more weight and structure to keep their foot protected and supported while traversing uneven surfaces. So, how do you know which walking shoes suit your needs?
What to expect from the best travel walking shoes
Best travel walking shoes - May 2019
What people should focus on when getting a pair of travel walking shoes is comfort. Everyone has different preferences when it comes to style and construction, but you could never go wrong if you choose a shoe that won’t cause your feet to ache at the end of the day.
Here are some points to consider:
The footgear should make you happy
The moment you put on a shoe, it should be comfortable. And when you look down at your feet, you should be able to smile and be proud to show off your pair of travel walking shoes. Though style may not be the first thing that pops into the mind for some people, it is a factor to consider if it’s something you will be wearing for a long time.
The trainer should have enough underfoot protection
The platform could come in the form of a thick midsole foam that attenuates shock or a thin midsole-outsole combination that absorbs shock and also protects against sharp elements on the ground.
There should not be any irritants
Seams inside the shoe are the number one culprit causing chafing or blistering. Shoes for travel should be smooth inside, preventing you from any discomfort.
The underside should be durable
While traveling on foot, you may be traversing pavements, soil, rocks, and other types of surfaces so the outsole of the footwear should be able to withstand walking on them as well as providing traction to prevent slippage.
The overall construction should suit the weather or climate of your destination
You won’t wear a travel walking shoe with a mesh upper if the place you are going to is always raining or snowing and you would not wear snow boots when you are traveling to a tropical paradise. Plan ahead.
Types of walking shoes for traveling
Traveling by foot could mean a walk around the block or running errands in town. Though the trip may be short, that doesn’t mean comfort should be sacrificed. Wearing the right pair of travel walking shoes will prevent foot pain and fatigue. Skechers offers a wide range of walking shoes that come in various styles. Its GOwalk line is specifically designed to provide comfort no matter how far or how long you walk. An example of this is the Skechers GOwalk Max which features a generous sole unit made of the 5GEN midsole and GOGA Max insole that delivers maximum underfoot comfort. The mesh fabric is lightweight and breathable and with its slip-on style, you’ll be hitting the town in no time.
When traveling by plane, there are so many things that you need to remember and the type of shoes to wear should not add to your list of worries. A pair of slip-on walking shoes is an ideal travel buddy. Because there are no laces or straps to fuss with, you can be in and out of your footgear in a matter of seconds - no more holding the line at the airport. Trainers sporting a slip-on design usually employ a soft mesh upper that allows the toes to spread and the foot to expand which usually happens when you’re sitting inside a plane for hours. These shoes are also lightweight and flexible, allowing you to do some foot exercises without the need to remove them.
Cobblestone-friendly travel companion
Europe is known for its picturesque sceneries and towns with most of them seemingly untouched by time. Most European countries have cities with cobblestone streets and though it may make you feel like you’ve traveled back in time, wearing the wrong shoes could mean tortured feet. For this type of surface, you’d do well wearing shoes with adaptive technology like the Skechers GOwalk Evolution Ultra - Rapids. What makes it different from other travel walking shoes is the presence of Ultra Pillars in the outsole. These button-like structures in the heel and the forefoot adapt to the uneven surface to provide ultimate comfort. It also employs the Air Cooled Goga Mat insole which is breathable and enhances the shock absorption of the midsole.
For those who cannot imagine their travels without taking a craggy mountain trail or a verdurous forest path, it is best to invest in a pair of sturdy hiking shoes. But if you are not sure where your next adventure is going to lead you but you want to be prepared, try going with a travel walking shoe like the Ecco Terrawalk. This trainer is designed for walking on smooth pavements and rocky terrains thanks to the combination of polyurethane and thermoplastic polyurethane for the outsole that delivers exceptional grip. For cushioning, the footwear is equipped with the Polisport foam insert which is anatomically molded for long-lasting comfort and the FLUIDFORM midsole for maximum shock absorption. As for the upper, it uses premium oil nubuck and nubuck leathers that provides a structured top. You can also find hiking-like footwear among New Balance walking shoes. These trainers feature a leather or suede upper with a waterproof membrane interior. And for cushioning, they often employ the sturdy Absorb platform for extra support and protection on demanding types of terrains.
Pronation control footwear
If you suffer from overpronation or the excessive inward rolling in of the foot when you walk, then wearing a pair of travel walking shoes with stability features can help you go the distance without experiencing discomfort. The New Balance 1865 is an athletic-inspired walking shoe that features a mesh upper for breathability with synthetic overlays that securely holds the foot in place. The midsole is made of the Rapid Rebound foam while the Ndurance rubber makes up the outsole. As for the stability feature, it has the SBS Stabilizer, a hard rubber, sandwiched between the outsole and the midsole under the medial side of the heel. This element toughens the medial area to prevent the foot from rolling in.
Another trainer to consider is the Brooks Addiction Walker. What makes this footwear special is the use of the BioMoGo DNA platform that is engineered to retain its fresh-from-the-box cushioning for a long period coupled with the Extended Progressive Diagonal Rollbar (PDRB) that is directly incorporated into the midfoot to support the arch and deliver a smooth forward motion. The combination of these technologies results in an “eternal” motion control walking shoe.
Frequently asked questions
What’s the best brand for travel walking shoes?
The best travel walking shoes depend on what the person is looking for. If you like lightweight and flexible trainers that are also trendy, Skechers walking shoes may be your best bet. But if you are in search of a sturdier pair, like ones with leather uppers or have stability or motion control features, then New Balance and Brooks may be better suited for your needs. If a leather upper does not suit your style, Propet, Vionic, Ryka, and Avia offer travel walking shoes that come with mesh or jersey uppers, and women also have the option getting a comfortable pair in dainty silhouettes.
How much do travel walking shoes cost?
There are affordable travel walking shoes that cost somewhere between $60 to $80 while others are a bit more pricey, costing $100 or even more. The great news is RunRepeat scour the interwebs to find the best offers from various online retailers so you can get a pair or comfortable travel walking shoes for as low as $25. Just click on a pair that you’re interested in to see the offers.
How to clean your travel walking shoes?
The fastest way to clean your travel walking shoes, no matter the type of material used on the upper, is by brushing the dirt off. A simple wipe down using a clean, damp cloth can also work wonders on leather and synthetic leather. If there is stubborn dirt, dip a brush/cloth/sponge in a warm soapy solution, and use that to scrub the stain away. Wipe off the suds and dirt using a clean, damp sponge/cloth. Air-dry the trainer for a few hours. If the trainer gets soaked in water, remove insoles and laces if there are any and clean and air-dry them separately. Then clean the shoes and allow them to dry at room temperature.
Remember! Do NOT use direct heat sources for drying as that can compromise the built of the footgear. Do NOT machine wash unless otherwise stated by the manufacturer.
Are there minimalist travel walking shoes?
Yes, there are travel walking shoes that have very thin underfoot coverage. An example of this is the Vibram Furoshiki. This footgear is designed using flexible materials so it can easily roll up stored without taking up too much space. The upper is made of elastane and nylon, delivering a stretchy foothold that allows for toe splaying and foot expansion. It is also breathable which helps keep the foot fresh. The sole unit employs a low-density Vibram rubber that is engineered to be tough and attenuate shock and offers multidirectional traction and flexibility.
When should I replace my travel walking shoes?
Travel walking shoes are built to last between 350 to 500 miles or about 6 to 9 months of use. However, some trainers can last up to a year, or even more if properly taken care of. There are also some shoes that deteriorate even when not used. The rule of thumb is if you see any tear on the upper or the outsole has been worn out, even if you’ve only used it for a few months, it’s time to buy a new pair to avoid accidents while walking. Another sign to watch out for is if the midsole has lost its ability to absorb shock.
15 best travel walking shoes
- New Balance 877
- Skechers Equalizer 2.0
- Skechers GOwalk Max
- Brooks Addiction Walker
- New Balance 577
- Reebok Ever Road DMX
- New Balance 1865
- Reebok Walk Ultra 6 DMX Max
- Saucony Grid Omni Walker
- Vibram Furoshiki
- New Balance 813
- New Balance Ralaxa
- Reebok Ridgerider Trail 3.0
- Reebok CloudRide DMX 3.0
- Reebok Work N Cushion 3.0
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