Steven Alphonse

Wear It or Pack It:
Our Guide to the Best Travel Jacket

When your travels take you from Germany to Nepal, you need a jacket that can catch up.

Weather can change at the drop of a hat, and if you’re not prepared, you risk hypothermia. But you don’t want to have to lug around a thick winter coat that takes up valuable luggage space. Nor do you want to shell out precious dollars at your destination when you find yourself underdressed.

A travel jacket might be the solution for you. It’s a garment that’s lightweight, versatile in all different kinds of cold, easy to store, and affordable for your price point.

But there are so many travel jackets on the market, so which one do you choose? 

Keep reading for a brief guide on travelers’ jackets, and which one will make sure you’re prepared for wherever your journey takes you.

Travel Jackets: Some Things to Consider

Cold is different everywhere you go. The cold rainy season of the Philippines is not the same as Korea’s windy winters. But you don’t want to have to pack a light jacket for the Philippines, and a heavy jacket when you make the flight up to the land of K-pop.

A travel jacket is versatile and works almost everywhere it goes. It wicks away moisture when you don’t need as much insulation but keeps you nice and dry if you hit pouring rain.

Most importantly, a travel jacket should be lightweight and easy to store. When space comes at a premium, backpackers and globetrotters need something that won’t take up half a carry-on. And those who plan to move don’t have space for anything unnecessary.

With that said, here are some of the best travel jackets around.

Patagonia 3-in-1 Parka: Ideal for Colder Temperatures

When you need a bit of extra insulation for a place like Siberian Russia, but the ability to peel off layers as you move towards Moscow’s more temperate climate, this is the jacket for you. This is a lightweight, warm jacket for travel.

It features a waterproof shell, and a removable hood, all while having a slimmer fit. This is the go-between for those who need a dressy jacket that can also handle extreme temperatures.

This parka is on the bulkier side, and colors are limited. However, if your destinations are taking you to colder climates, then you’ll be grateful for the extra insulation that you can strip off at will. 

Patagonia Nano Puff Hoodie: Best Overall

This jacket takes the cake as the best all-rounder. It features synthetic down, which means you get a bit more water resistance than typical down jackets. And like other down jackets, it comes in at a light 12.8 ounces.

The Nano Puff is a more environmentally-friendly option, being made of 55% post-consumer recyclables. And the warranty on Patagonia jackets overall is good, so this is one you can expect to keep throughout the years. Patagonia has excellent men’s travel jackets and travel jackets for women.

And if you find yourself in a climate too warm for the Nano Puff, you can easily use it as a pillow. 

Baubax Bomber 2.0: The Backpacker's Choice

For those who have the most limited space, but need the most possible functionality, the Baubax is for you.

When the Baubax crew designed this jacket, they left no stone unturned. This is evidenced by the neck pillow, built-in gloves, and wide variety of pockets designed for practically everything you can think of. And this jacket comes at a very affordable price, perfect for travelers on a budget.

But as far as travelers’ jackets come, this one isn’t for the coldest temperatures. Expect to add layers for anything that drops below 45 degrees. Consider this the travel jacket for tropical climates that have an occasional cold rainstorm.

Ministry of Supply Intelligent Heated Jacket: The High-tech Jacket

The future is here with the Ministry of Supply’s smart jacket. That’s right, this jacket uses artificial intelligence to learn and perfect your optimal body temperature. You can control it via a smartphone app.

As far as versatile jackets go, this one might be king. Users report that the added warming feature can get them to temperatures as low as 15 degrees Fahrenheit.

This is a waterproof, windproof, all-weather-proof jacket that you can power with a battery pack. The only downside is that the Ministry of Supply does not include a power pack for you. You’ll have to buy your own, but make sure it’s compatible.

The North Face Thermoball Eco Jacket: The Most Compact Travel Jacket

When it comes to space, this jacket will get you the most bang for your buck. It will keep you toasty warm, but it won’t require an extra trunk of its own to store. Believe it or not, you can pack this cozy jacket into a tiny ball small enough to fit in a purse!

Now, this isn’t an artic-rated jacket, but it will get you through chilly mornings. It does great with layering. With a few long-sleeve shirts, you will be in good order.

The Thermoball series is also quite affordable, coming in well below the higher-tier jackets. For the most warmth in the smallest package, you won’t find anything better.

Choose the Travel Jacket That Suits You

When it comes to a travel jacket, there are more options than one article can discuss. Suffice it to say, you won’t have trouble finding a travel jacket that fits your unique needs, and keeps you warm on a backpacking trip. And when you put your money towards reputable brands, you’re investing in a travel garment that might accompany you to the end of your days.

It’s a challenge to compare and contrast products to live the best lifestyle possible. But now, you don’t have to. Contact us today for the best comparison guides on the internet for every aspect of your life.