Baby Boomer Travel, Over 50 Travel, Travel Tips

Picking Out the Best Shoes for Your Vacation

Hooray, you’ve finally booked your dream vacation! Now comes the hard part – packing.

Packing a suitcase is arguably one of life’s most stressful activities, especially as far as footwear is concerned. Choosing one pair of flip flops that go with all of your bikinis is one thing, but selecting the right supportive sneakers or hiking shoes for an epic month of backpacking is a totally different matter.

In other words, you need to know exactly what your vacation will consist of to know exactly what footwear to consider. Here are some helpful tips that will help you choose the right footwear for your vacation, no matter how adventurous you plan to get.

Comfort Over Style

This is no catwalk! Comfort, durability, and even whether or not they are waterproof are all important factors to consider in your shoe selection process. Focus on what you plan to get out of your vacation to decide on the best type of footwear.

A trip to Disneyland, for example, calls for flat shoes that you can walk in, and that keep you comfortable as you wait in line. Tennis shoes, plimsolls, and sneakers are perfect for theme parks, busy city breaks, and all other vacations that involve walking on hard surfaces with thousands of other like-minded tourists. All over Europe, they walk a lot. A day in Sintra, Portugal meant we put on miles on our feet. Choose neutral colors such as white or black if you want them to match with everything!

More rugged surfaces such as hiking trails call for slightly sturdier shoes. The clue is in the name, so we would go with a pair of waterproof trail runners or light hikers. You won’t want to be carrying around multiple pairs of footwear while you’re away. That’s why it’s so important to choose a versatile option from the get-go!

Test Them Out & Break Them In

Practice makes perfect, so it makes a lot of sense to practice walking in your shoes before you take them on the biggest adventure of your life. Test them out on a variety of different surfaces, and try walking up and down stairs and hills to break them in. There’s nothing worse than nursing a painful blister on vacation!

Don’t Forget The Socks

Even if you’re traveling to a hot climate, you’ll still need socks to wear with your shoes; trust us on this! And don’t just choose any old pair of socks, either. Cotton socks should be avoided, especially for walking and hiking activities, as they get saturated with every drop of sweat and don’t dry properly. Merino wool socks are the best choice here, as they are able to regulate temperature and can absorb sweat really easily. Who wouldn’t want that?

Loosen The Purse Strings

Cheap shoes are cheap for a reason – and although you may want to wear comfortable sandals, your action-packed vacation is not the place for them. We’re not telling you to shell out on a pair of Christian Louboutin heels (save that splurge for when you come back!) but we are urging you to invest in a good pair of supportive, comfortable, and most importantly fit-for-purpose shoes. And unfortunately, they don’t come cheap.

By all means, shop around in case you get lucky and find sales on full price items, but don’t go for a cheaper pair of shoes just to save a little bit of money. You’ve likely spent a lot of hard-earned money on your trip already – not to mention a lot of time preparing for it – so don’t let a cheap pair of shoes ruin it. The wrong pair of shoes can instantly ruin your holiday, as well as your feet!

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