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Men's travel pants...favorites?

Over the years, I've used many different types and brands of travel pants. While recommended for packing simplicity and mobility, I don't care too much for convertible pants. I'm planning on getting a couple of new pairs of pants before a trip to The Netherlands and Italy in October. Curious what's out there in terms of new technology, combining all of the things we like in travel pants. I like to go out at night so I suppose I'm looking for a more "regular" style than the multiple pocket, cargo pants. Any thoughts? Favorites?

Posted by
461 posts

My husband really likes Columbia pants for traveling. They are a cotton/nylon blend and have a couple of pockets with zippers, but they don't look like cargo pants. They look great for day or night wear and they wash and dry really good. We've even washed them by hand in the sink and they dry overnight.

You can get them online at Columbia. He got his at a Belk store near us.

Posted by
1828 posts

Yes, I have some thoughts. I won't buy convertible pants. They look tacky. I've been through a number of different travel pants and the two I'm using now come from RailRider and Duluth Trading. The criteria I use in choosing travel pants is that they have to have a roomy zipper pocket inside the right front pocket. That's where I keep my passport and sometimes my wallet.

The RailRiders, there are two models, are 100% nylon, black, and of two different weights. Either model would be nice enough to wear out at night. The Duluth Traders is 100% nylon, khaki, and a bit heavier that the RailRiders. They are also roomier in the crotch. Either kind will sink wash and dry overnight.

I bought Royal Robbins which I used to use exclusively for a long time but they didn't have expandable waists like the RailRiders and Duluth Traders. I also have a pair of Eddie Bauer Travex travel pants but the zipper pocket isn't big enough to be practical for me. I have tried others too and some have been tossed out a hotel window or left behind a closet. Clothes have to work for me or out they go.

I think the RailRiders model is called the Back Country Khakis and they come in several colors. I don't remember the model name for their other pants that I have but they are also black and a bit heavier. The Duluth Traders pants are called Dry On The Fly and they have several colors but not black. My wife says they all look like a "regular" style.

Posted by
2525 posts

Pants that work very well for me and have for a number of years are Anywhere Pants by TravelSmith. Constructed of nylon and despite being very lightweight, they last a long, long time, wash easily and dry quickly. The design includes two zipped hidden security pockets. The cut works well whether walking about town, trekking or riding bicycles. Spendy, but on sale now.

Posted by
2246 posts

I have a few pairs of Patagonia Rock Craft pants, made for climbing with a super light, semi flexible fabric. Not sure they are still called Rock Craft, but something like them is probably a good bet.

Posted by
12132 posts

My husband loves his Zion pants by Prana:

http://www.rei.com/product/810258/prana-stretch-zion-pants-mens-32-inseam

The fabric is nylon and spandex, substantial and quiet--no nylon rustle or swish noise. His are black but they come in dark blue, tan, etc. They do not have cargo pockets or geeky details. There is one zip pocket on the right front but the others are not secure (and therefor not used). They look nice enough to go to dinner in Italy.

Posted by
107 posts

Why do you think you need "New Technology"? Regular Dockers, chinos or equivalent work fine, are comfortable, washable and can be had in no wrinkle versions. They generally cost less than half of the specialty products and look better and last longer.

My wife and I have been on 4 RS tours and she often comments on how silly 50 or 60 year old American men look on the streets of Paris or Rome dressed as if they are spending the next two weeks on the Pacific Crest Trail. Grow up guys! You're in the big city, dress like it.

Robbie

Posted by
6562 posts

I prefer to travel with a high quality pair of khaki pants and a pair of jeans--both sent to the laundry and heavily starched. You can wear them day after day if starched and they still look good.

I wear the jeans when we're touring cities--in case I have to sit down and rest. Soot and other debris just doesn't show up often.

Posted by
56 posts

Certainly a fair point Robbie. By "new technology" I simply meant something that packs light and resists wrinkles so that it looks good upon removal from a backpack. There are many options. Just curious what people like. Thanks for all of the input. Happy travels!

Posted by
2788 posts

I have gone to Europe for 13 of the last 14 years and during those years have taken 13 RS tours. I take a 21" RS roller bag and can travel on its contents for unlimited time. I take three pairs of everything, most being ExOffico, which get sink washed every so often, hung up and are dry in the morning. I take a pair of zip-off pants that can act as shorts or swimsuit. The other two pairs of pants can look dressy enough for nice hotels or restaurants when matched with a nice shirt. I have been in most every big city in Europe and have never been self conscious about my dress. Most all of my fellow RS tour mates dress very similar to me and I can count on one hand the number of tour mates who dressed up more than the rest of us. Hope you can find the style you are looking for.

Posted by
1130 posts

Black Levis jeans and black New Balance running shoes have passed muster at the opera in Florence, Michelin starred restaurants in Paris, concerts at St. Chapelle and the Royal Albert, and Sunday roasts in London. I did wear a sport coat with tie and slacks to high tea at the Ritz in London and to a champagne tour of Buckingham Palace. I could have worn the jeans and NB shoes to the palace since others did. Wear one, pack one and you will likely wear the same pair for two weeks with no problems.

Posted by
1130 posts

Black Levis jeans and black New Balance running shoes have passed muster at the opera in Florence, Michelin starred restaurants in Paris, concerts at St. Chapelle and the Royal Albert, and Sunday roasts in London. I did wear a sport coat with tie and slacks to high tea at the Ritz in London and to a champagne tour of Buckingham Palace. I could have worn the jeans and NB shoes to the palace since others did. Wear one, pack one and you will likely wear the same pair for two weeks with no problems.

Posted by
909 posts

Like Monte, I like a secured, or hidden, pocket inside one of the front pockets. But, I also was tiring of the feel of the all-synthetic travel pants, and also wanted blue jeans. I found these jeans by Rohan that fit the bill. They aren't cheap, but they have a hidden pocket in one of the front pockets, and they pack smaller and lighter than regular denim jeans. So far, I'm happy with them.

Posted by
1064 posts

Wrangler jeans, although Levis are good too. Especially in October. Regardless of the season, I always take a mix of jeans and, to please my wife, polyester-blend pants, but wear jeans 90 percent of the time. For formal wear, it is hard to beat a new pair of jeans with a white shirt and tie. Not that I would actually wear a tie or a white shirt on vacation.

Posted by
5883 posts

I like traveling in clothes that have technical features like extra pockets, zippers, loops, and lightweight fabrics. I don't care if they look too outdoors-y. My favorite so far are Craghoppers from Travelsmith. Zippered pockets on both sides. Nothing against jeans, but I don't find them comfortable for travel.

Posted by
1217 posts

Spousal Unit also really likes his prAna Zion pants and has them in multiple colors. He wears them around town all the time much of the year.

Posted by
1609 posts

Hi Kevin, my boyfriend recommends Eddie Bauer TravEx pants. There are several styles and they are great. Lightweight and can be washed out in the sink. They dry in a few hours.

Posted by
1719 posts

I agree with new technology recommendations, I buy one or two pairs of microfiber "slacks" on sale at Macys in dark colors. They go with everything, don't wrinkle, dry quickly, and just look more grown-up than REI pants or jeans.

If after the trip you never want to see them again, donate to Goodwill and get the writeoff.

Posted by
749 posts

I use pants and shorts from Clothing Arts.com, they are made from nylon so they dry fast, are lighweight and have the added bonus of being pick pocket proof! I've been using these for the last 3-4 years and they are all I take with me on trips now.

Posted by
860 posts

I travel a lot for work and this last year my wife bought me two pair of Bluff Works travel pants. They are by far my new favorite travel gear. They pack light, dry easily, look good and still have the key security features I look for in travel pants (hidden pocket, zippered back pocket, small phone pocket, security loop).

They work well for a hike, bike ride, opera or board meeting.

DJ