Traveling, almost by definition, is uncomfortable. Whether you are stuffing yourself into an aluminum tube that is rocketing along 39,000-feet in the air, jostling around the back of a van as it careens down a dirt road, or just waiting in line at the boarder – there isn’t much to love about getting from point A to B. Sure, our modes of transportation are comparatively much safer, cheaper, and more comfortable than they were even just 70 years ago – but at the end of the day any long-distance trip is still a waiting game. One of the best ways to make that wait a bit more bearable? By buying yourself comfort where you can.
Depending on who you talk to, this might mean throwing on a neck pillow, a packable travel jacket, downing stiff drink or two and a slew of podcasts, or a combination of all three. For us? That equation always includes great travel pants. These garments are form-fitting, stretchy, durable, and comfortable enough to wear on long, unrelenting days on the road. Most of those included in our list here were primarily made for hiking or rock climbing, while a few are more urban-oriented pants that have been given a technical twist for commuting from the apartment to the office. All of this is to say – when you get yourself a pair of travel pants, you’re actually getting a lot more utility than you would with a normal pair. Consider it an investment in both your own personal sanity while setting out on those cross-country trips, and one for your daily life.
Columbia Pilot Peak
An attractive, simple pair of pants with a cotton and elastane fabric. The combination of materials gives the garment a comfortable fit, but a degree of stretch and movability you’d never get with a pair of pure cotton jeans.
Marmot Arch Rock Pants
Another great pair of tough pants built for the outdoors. This particular pair features two slanted front pockets, as well as an additional zip-closure compartment on the thigh and two on the back. Cut from a nylon an elastane fabric, they’re more than capable for conquering tough environments and conditions without overheating or constraining your movement.
Outdoor Research Ferrosi Pants
Made from 90D nylon and spandex fabric, these travel pants from Outdoor Research feature a wind and water resistant build, as well as a lightweight, abrasion resistant fit. Articulated knees make the pants ideal for long, tough hikes, or activities like climbing. And don’t worry about the heat. These pair of pants are super breathable, making sure you’ll stay cool even when the A/C gets busted and the temperature is on the rise.
Coalatree Trailhead Adventure Pant
There is a lot to like here. Along with checking all the boxes you’d expect like water resistance, four-way stretch, rip-stop fabric, and moisture wicking – these pants from Coalatree can pack into their own front pocket for easy storage and are handsome enough to be worn into the office.
Arc’teryx Lefroy Pant
If you had to highlight one quality with these travel pants from Arc’teryx, it’d have to be breathability. Made from a Aequora AirPerm fabric, these pants have a lightweight feel, four-way stretch, and air permeability that combined with the DWR treatment make them incredibly dynamic. Solid for wearing on the rock-wall or on your way cross-country.
Mountain Hard Wear AP Pant
Along with just looking pretty sharp, these travel pants from Mountain Hard Wear are great for wearing on long, tough trips. Rather than being made solely from a synthetic material, the canvas fabric pants are made from a combination cotton, nylon, and elastane giving it a durable, stretchy quality that still feels natural when you put them on. For when it gets a little hot, or for when when you hop on your bike – the pants feature a snap-roll-up feature that allows you to scrunch up the cuffs and keep them away from your ankles.
Unlike others on this list, these chinos from Bluffworks are built more with the urban environment in mind than the outdoors. But don’t let that fact trick you into thinking they’re anything but perfect for going on long trips. They’re comfortable, stretchy, moisture wicking and breathable, and lightweight as can by. Totally wrinkle free, they’re perfect for doing everything from riding from one side of town to the other to taking a trans-Atlantic flight.
Western Rise Slim Rivet Pant
Looking a bit more like jeans than your common hiking slacks or technical chino, these pants from Western Rise are just as solid a fit for wear on a long trip or a short ride to the office. Made from a nylon spandex blend they have a high UPF rating, a 2-way stretch weft, and a water-repellent treatment that’ll keep you dry no matter what. For extra security, the pants also boast a hidden pock pocket with a zippered closure.
Foehn Nelson Pant
Foehn, in our minds, is one of the most exciting outdoor brands to pop up in the last year. Their clothing is fresh, attractive, and more than capable of standing up to any challenge you throw its way. These hiking pants from the brand exemplify all of those qualities and more. Made from a tough cotton fabric woven with corder nylon and lycra, these pants are tough as nails, dynamic as can be, and attractive enough to be worn in everyday life.
Rhone Commuter City Pant
These pants from athletic company Rhone have a distinctly formal look to them that belies their rugged and capable build. The pants, cut from a Japanese stretch fabric, feature reflective detailing for staying visible during daily commutes, a media pocket for securing your phone while traveling, along with moisture wicking properties.
Olivers Passage Pant
Olivers first broke onto the scene making super comfortable gym shorts. In the few years since then, the brand has branded out a bit – making great garments like their Passage Pant. These travel pants feature a 4-way stretch, a gusseted crotch for totally comfort and mobility. And the best part about it? The pants, despite their technical capabilities, are handsome enough for wearing in to the office, out for drinks, or just around town.
Lululemon All Town Commute Pant
If anyone knows how to make attractive and comfortable clothing for men, it’s Lululemon. Yeah, sure, the started out primarily as a brand that made women’s Yoga apparel – but they’ve made serious inroads with their casual clothing. Take these travel pants from the brand for instance. Cut from a sweat-wicking Warpstreme four-way stretch fabric, the pants are comfortable to wear no matter the temperature, and don’t look as lazy as a pair of sweatpants.
Topo Designs Tech Pants
These pants were designed by Topo specifically for hiking, backpacking, and traveling. Cut from a nylon and spandex material, they boast a 2-way stretch, a water repellant finish, and serious breathability for when the mercury goes on the rise. Additionally the travel pants have deep back pockets, a zippered stow-away area, and articulated knees.
Rapha Loopback Trousers
No one balances form and function as well as Rapha. The UK cycling brand made a name for themselves in part because of pieces like this loopback trousers. The Pertex fabric they’re cut from make them perfect for riding or traveling, while their attractive styling make them perfect for the office. If you’re planning on heading right into a meeting after hopping off your flight, these may be worth considering.
Outlier OG Climbers
Cut from Outlier’s own OG cloth, these pants have a classic look to them with an out-of-this-world four-way stretch. In addition to their look and fit, the pants have a self-cleaning NanoSphere treatment – which is just a fancy way to say they’re water-resistant and fast drying.
15 Best Travel Backpacks
Looking for more than just a solid pair of pants to take with you on your travels? Take a look at our rundown of the best travel backpacks on the market.