Friday, July 10, 2009
Aside from your passport, plane tickets and money, each of which should be in your purse or money belt and not in your checked luggage, there is one necessity that stands out as arguably the most important item that you’ll pack. It’s not your ear plugs, your iPod or makeup, although those are important too. No, the most important item in your suitcase is — your shoes.
Be sure to leave room for comfortable travel shoes
that pass my test below!
Photo Source: Mystery Creature
Not just any shoes will do. You’ll need to carefully select several pairs that not only fit with your itinerary, but more importantly, are also functional, comfortable and broken in. Believe me; I’m speaking from experience when I say it’s safe to pass on the cute shoes you’ve spotted during a last-minute shopping trip. Skip on them even if they’re flats. By the end of my first two hours walking around London I didn’t look so cute limping from the large blisters on the back of my feet! Within five days I was resigned to wearing the flip flops I had packed for the shower since every other pair I had brought had given me blisters. As my fiancé so kindly put it, “Your feet make you look like you’re homeless.” Ouch.
These are examples of shoes that should be left at home.
While they may look cute, you won't look very posh
after twisting an ankle on cobblestone streets.
Photo Source: NY Post
Fortunately you can learn from my fashion faux pas and save yourself the pain and trouble of trying to explain to a non-English speaker in broken French and charades that you need Band-aids for les pieds. All you have to do is follow my Should These Shoes Make It into My Suitcase Test to ensure that you will have happy feet for the duration of your trip!
Just because you're packing comfortable shoes doesn't mean
you have to sacrafice style! These ballerinas come in virtually
every color and style to match your taste.
Photo Source: Team Sugar
Should These Shoes Make It into My Suitcase Test
- Have I worn these shoes regularly for at least two weeks to a month or longer? Did I walk for long periods of time without developing blisters, cuts or rashes?
- Are they easy to walk in? Can you walk in them at length without slipping or wobbling?
- If they do have a heel, is it shorter than two inches? Flats and ballerina shoes are best, but short heels can be an option. Cowgirl boots are another trendy style that may be appropriate depending on their fit and your comfort level.
- Do the shoes have a good grip or tread? London rain makes for slippery streets and well-worn shoes can be a tripping or slipping hazard.
- Do I have at least one to two pairs of closed-toed shoes packed?
- Do the shoes match outfits I’m bringing? Do I have too many pairs of blacks or browns?
- Do I have a good balance of casual versus dressy shoes that fits the activities planned?
- Should I bring tennis shoes? Maybe and maybe not. While I decided to forgo bringing sneakers to better blend in when abroad, there are obvious situations when you may need tennis shoes, hiking boots, water shoes or other specialized feet wear. Use your own discretion to decide what is most appropriate and when.