Do jeans make your packing list or do you leave them at home?
Before my first trip overseas, I read countless travel advice articles on what to pack and how to pack it. In these articles, the writers strongly encouraged readers to leave the jeans at home – so I did! A few trips later, I decided to pack a pair and almost felt like I was breaking travelers’ code.
For as long as I can remember, the “to pack or not to pack” debate on jeans has been alive and well. There are just as many articles and blog posts suggesting you take them along as there are ones recommending you leave them at home.
Of course there is no right or wrong answer, but there are compelling reasons to pack jeans or leave them.
- You can dress them up or down and wear them with just about anything. As a versatile item, you might consider packing fewer additional bottoms.
- Many people find their favorite pair of jeans to be one of the most comfortable things they own. Fashion + comfort is an unbeatable combo.
- Taking a (relatively) short trip? Many people say they tend to wear jeans for several days without washing them, so the potential challenge of cleaning and drying them on the road becomes less of an obstacle. Don’t ask me how many days I’ve gone without washing when necessary!
- Have access to a washer & dryer — or time to line dry? If you prefer not to go days (or weeks…) without washing, your jeans will be clean in a snap.
- Living an expat life? Opting for a slow travel style? Hanging out in one location for a few weeks? The potential weight and bulkiness of jeans won’t matter when you’re not on the move.
Leave them at home!
- Jeans tend to be heavier than the lightweight travel pants we often bring on the road. If you’re backpacking, every ounce/gram counts after those first few steps!
- In addition to added weight, jeans tend to have more bulk than other items of clothing. If you’re aiming for carry-on only or attempting to downsize your current bag, jeans may not make the cut.
- Sometimes washing machines simply aren’t available. If the sink is going to be your stand in, you may find washing jeans is more a chore than other articles of clothing.
- Are you an on-the-go traveler? Jeans air dry relatively slowly and may not be ready for you to stash in your bag when you’re ready to check out of the hostel and board your next train or plane.
What do you do when it’s time to pack – include a pair (or more?) of jeans or leave them behind? Does your decision vary based on your travel circumstances (destination, length of trip, etc.)?