I am going to Ireland the end of September through the middle of October. I know it will rain and at the shore it most likely will be windy. I am afraid I am going to be cold so I am debating if the coat needs to be lined. Packable a must as I am afraid if I get warm I may leave it somewhere. Bonus point if it has some shape to it and not boxy looking. A hood a must as I will not be bring an umbrella. Any recommendations would be appreciated.
This is my go-to jacket that ticks all the boxes (waterproof, hood that stows away, pit zips for comfort). It isn't noted as "packable" but it rolls up small. Comes in many colors. Size up to accommodate layers (it is slim fit and I prefer layering over a lined coast). https://smile.amazon.com/Marmot-PreCip-Womens-Lightweight-Waterproof/dp/B00DNO0CXA
Layers and the ability to achieve warmth will be very important. I would recommend going to an outdoor store like REI to try to find a jacket that you like the cut and fit of. If you’re planning on doing hiking you’ll want some rain pants as well. We hiked for a few days on Isle of Skye and I had ALL the regrets for not packing rain pants. Since that trip I’ve acquired a set of Black Diamond rain jacket and pants and I love this gear. It’s not cheap but it’s lightweight and packs down small. You might be able to catch it discounted like I did. I’ve found the weather in this part of the world to be crazy chilly depending on factors like wind chill and humidity. I remember freezing on the coast of Ireland in May. I definitely recommend layers and gloves.
You might want to check out Eddie Bauer. For colder weather I have their Girl on the Go French which is longer, has shape and a hood but may be heavier than you want. I also have a package inclined windbreaker that is rain proif. I bought it oversized so I could later as needed.
If you shop Amazon you might try searching on packable rain jackets. You'll be more likely to find unlined ones.
I have a handful of these jackets in different colors. They are great jackets and have even served me well in Iceland in October. It has pit zips, so if you get hot just undo those a bit and you cool off. This is my go to hiking jacket for here in OR and WA.
I also have this one. It is much sturdier than the REI one, and I wore this in Iceland this winter. It blocks the wind and rain 100%, packs easily, but is a bit more stiff.
I don't have a brand recommendation but I do recommend water-proof over water-resistant. With a hood.
I 2nd the idea of going to an outdoor store to try things on.
Instead of a lined coat, I'd recommend a puffy vest to layer under. To me that is much more functional than a lined jacket. The puffy vest will squish down into a ziplock bag and is lightweight. Look at an inexpensive one from the 32 Degrees brand, They don't have much right now but look toward the end of summer when they get their new season stock in.
I have only traveled to Europe with a waterproof raincoat when cycling…in the past (and bright yellow). The rest of the time has been water resistent. However, as I agree with Pam about all things packing except this and my usual jacket is worse for the wear, I recently purchased an Eddie Bauer. It is waterproof with hood and below hips, which I like. I think it looks nice for non-rainy days as well because one outer layer is all I will take. So, I am likely converted…but will not yet give up my umbrella. Thanks Pam.
I love my Port Townsend trench from Eddie Bauer. I paid about $85 for it a few months ago to use on our 3 week trip to France in May. It didnt rain while we were in France, but it was comfortable to wear as a regular coat. If it's cold, I put a vest under it. I wish I would have had a raincoat (instead of a rain jacket) when we were in Ireland in September of 2019.
We bought LLBean packable rain jackets..They are very thin and super easy to pack…. we have worn them since we ordered in 2014 and will take them on our upcoming My Way Alpine tour. We will pack our packable LLBean vests for the Alps also…
They have been wonderful ..never got wet even in down pours.
Selecting rain wear is complicated by the number of available features: waterproof zippers, pit zips for ventilation, internal wind skirt, velcro cuffs, hood fit and closures, hood bill, zipper garage, hand warmer pockets, security pockets, breast pockets (internal or external), packable pocket, reflective features, breathability, colors, lining, and, of course, if you are sticking with premium brands, you will pay for what you get. My brands of choice for wain wear that my grandchildren might inherit someday: Patagonia, Marmot, Outdoor Research, REI, NorthFace, and Mountain Hardware. Check the garage sale racks at REI and local used sporting goods shops for top brands in gently used condition and at terrific prices.
I have a Kuhl Jetstream Trench that I love. I wear it all the time around home and have packed it on a couple of trips. It is waterproof, breathable, long enough to cover me down to mid-thigh, has a well-fitting and adjustable hood. It weighs almost nothing and takes up no room at all in my suitcase.
I can layer underneath it if needed, and yes, it is wind-resistant.
I also use the LL Bean packable rain jacket which stows down very small. However I made sure to purchase a size that allows room for my LLB Windpro fleece underneath. It is also very rain resistant and great for wind. Between the two, I am covered for various temperatures. And as another poster said, rain pants are a great idea! Got mine at REI, and now I never travel without them. They fold up tiny, but are extremely useful in wet, windy conditions.
I second the Marmot suggestion. I bought mine (a different style than the one linked above--I don't think they make it anymore) seven years ago and I've been very happy with how it's held up.
Marmot. I order one size larger for layering a sweater or similar.
Serves as a great windbreaker, too. Packs down into small space.
Something more stylish is Magellan’s Cafe jacket. The rain rolls off the fabric. I wear it mostly in the
off-season months in. New England and Europe. April into May, October and November.
It stays dry during downpours. It has multiple interior pockets that you can easily pass up on not using a day bag if you choose.
I used it for tours in Ireland, Belgium & Holland, Berlin-Prague-Vienna.
Patagonia is generally tough to beat. Products are superb and they have a ridiculously good gaurantee/return policy. I didn't take my own advice this last trip and went with a packable REI. I ended up nearly soaked. I love REI but didn't love that.
I’ve been test driving my new Patagonia Torrentshell for the past month…in rain and wind. I’ve been stalking these until they were on sale… first, because I have never been disappointed with Patagonia, and second, planning for our trip to Ireland. I wanted to make sure we were talking waterproof, rather than rain resistant. Well, this jacket was put to the test with our unusually yucky spring, so I can honestly say….waterproof!!!
Forgot to add…packs into its own pocket!
Patagonia Torrentshell jacket. You'll never buy another rain coat. Packs quite small (I stuff mine into the hood) and they guarantee their clothes for life. I've had several over the years that have needed repairs, and they sent me a new jacket each time. The best company and a great rain coat!
I didn't want to post until I saw it in person. Arrived today and it's darn near perfect, and the 25% off ends today!
I love my Patagonia Torrentshell and have put it to the test in heavy rain on the Tour du Mont Blanc, in Patagonia, and elsewhere.
But I was so tempted by the OR 25%off sale and decided to order one on blue, just to have an alternative to my ivory-white Torrentshell.
It arrived yesterday, and I would give its fit and features a solid thumbs-up. But I decided it is too soon to replace my much-loved and reliable Patagonia jacket, so back it goes.
The only thing wrong with this one is I'd want it a little longer so rain runs past your bottom before the end of the coat:
Get it large enough to wear a puffer jacket under for warmth. I'm not always confident Amazon delivers what you thought you purchased. I'd probably try several before I found one I'm not returning. This is for example only. I'd want to be certain it's truly a waterproof fabric and something I'd be comfortable wearing.
Here is what I bought for a trip to Ireland -- waterproof and with lots of nice features to make it comfortable and versatile, like mesh lining, generous hood and pit zips. I plan to wear fleece under it to adjust for the temperature.