winter travel outfit

Winter Travel Outfits: Dress Well and Pack Light


Planning your winter travel outfits would help ease the stress of a winter trip. Winter is not the season you’d want to mess around with when it comes to travel packing. This might seem like an obvious one for the frequent, organized travelers out there. But a lot of us don’t create a packing list. Nope, it just seemed like an added chore on top of having to pack. That is, until after we forgot something and left it behind at home. Or some other disastrous scenarios. Can’t stress this enough; honestly, planning is key.

Create a packing list for your winter travel outfits

Make sure that you have a good idea of the weather in your destination. Do your research during your planning, as it will help you determine important things for your travel packing list. Having a packing list for your winter travel is a helpful step to plan your trip. 

A packing list helps. Create one.

Here are a number of reasons why starting a packing list for your travel would help tremendously.

  • A packing list helps kickstart your travel planning. Don’t know where to start when planning your itinerary? Start with something easier and more mundane first. This helps put things into perspective for you. This list helps kickstart the process of a more thorough travel planning and allowing you to get started on the more challenging planning process.
  • A packing list would help you keep track of your belongings. A packing list acts as a travel checklist that would be extremely helpful during any of your travel. Having a packing list would help your effort to pack light, especially if you’ve just getting started.
  • Being organized is one of the keys to packing light for travel. Especially during winter, when you’re inevitably going to pack bulkier items compared to any other time of the year. Having a packing list ready based on your winter travel outfits.
  • No more forgetting your items or losing them. Having a packing list with you minimizes the chance that you would lose your item in your destination because you leave them behind. Do you need to buy some items for your upcoming winter journey? Note them down. There would be a lesser chance for you to forget it.
  • Having a packing list eases your packing. No more guessing of what you should get into your backpack or suitcase. You’ll find that having a packing list helps ease your packing tremendously.

It’s best to start creating your travel packing list by categories. In general, travel packing list can consist of:

  • Tops
  • Bottoms
  • Toiletries
  • Personal Health (first aids, personal medicines, motion sickness medicines, vitamins, etc.)
  • Makeup
  • Electronic devices
  • Accessories (earmuffs, winter hats, etc.)

Check out this winter travel wardrobe for more ideas on packing and outfits for packing your winter travel outfits.

Pack less: If you’re traveling for longer than a week, do your laundry

A general rule of thumb for not doing any laundry during your trip is a one week trip. Remember that if you travel for a month, bringing just a week worth of clothing is enough. Travel light is key. You will have to wash your clothes at one point or another during your travel.

Not so keen of doing chores during your winter vacation? It’s a good reminder that during winter, you’re going to sweat so much less. This helps in keeping your clothes generally cleaner compared to when you’re going on a summer vacation. You can probably getaway with wearing a week’s worth of clothing being worn in two weeks just fine. The only pieces you’ll have to wash are just your underwear.

A packing list is highly personal. No one person’s needs are the same. Categories above, however, are applicable across many aspects; how long you’re traveling, when, and where.  Expand, tweak, and modify as you need, with select coordination of winter outfits in mind. 

A few quick packing tips for your next trip

  • Pack versatile items that you can repurpose. For winter, this could be an item such as the blanket scarves. Blanket scarves can be worn as a poncho in place of a coat or a well, an oversized scarf that it is. It can also serve as a comfy blanket you can wear on a plane. Both stylish and comfy, it is one of the most versatile items for your winter travel outfits.
  • Buy your outfits at your destinations. If you’re planning on doing some clothes shopping there anyway, why not buy the clothes to wear immediately? This is a common method travelers often use when shopping is an important part of their trip. This way, you can get away with bringing only two outfits for your winter travel, including the one you wear at the airport. This method would also help save you a significant amount of money on luggage cost.
  • If you can find it locally, then buy local. Things such as soaps and shampoos can be easily found anywhere. Unless you’re certain that you absolutely need specific toiletries (if you have special needs, for instance), buying locally would help lighten your luggage tremendously. If you live in a tropical or sub-tropical climate (like me) and don’t have a sufficient winter jacket, for instance, then buy once you’re in your destination. You’re going to have more options and would likely get them on a better price compared to buying in your home or importing.
  • Going for a two-week trip? No need to do your laundry, even if you’re also bringing one week worth of clothing or less. During winter you’re going to sweat less. Your clothing is likely going to survive to wear a couple of times or more without collecting body odor or dirt. Save some money and time by forgoing laundry altogether. For underwear, you can easily wash them by hand in the sink or in the bathroom. A lot of materials for underwear such as silk and laces are fragile anyway. Washing them by hand is the best method to clean them and it would help preserve the items as well.

Dress well, stay warm, and pack light!

Having a packing list helps a lot in shaping clear ideas for your winter travel outfits. Creating a list will also let you go back and do a double check. By having a simple, comprehensive list will prevent you from forgetting items. Essential clothing items and accessories such as hats, earmuffs, gloves, and such, are small items that are sometimes forgotten.

Think in Layers, Think in Outfits 

Ideally, winter travel outfits are best planned. Especially when you need to layer. Layers, layers, layers. Winter is all about layers. If you love styling, you’ll love winter as you come up with ideas of outfits that will keep you warm and still make you look hella fine. Thinking in layers is not merely to save you from the harsh winter cold. It has long been the recipe for good fashion. Mix and match won’t be here if not without thinking in layers. Planning your outfits is extremely important.

Layering would also keep you from bringing one huge, chunky sweater. They not only take up space, but they are also not versatile enough to wear for different occasions.

This closely correlates to point 1; planning the things you need to pack, and creating a packing list. Getting into this layering business can be a bit confusing and you can end up bringing so much more than you need if you don’t have clear coordination of the outfits.

Note that layering depends heavily on the climate, your tolerance to cold, and even your style for winter. In most cases, three layers are the rule of thumb. However, you may need to wear more, sometimes wear less, depending on the temperature and the weather at your travel destination at that time.

1. Invest in a quality base layer

This is the layer you put on after your underwear. One of the best base layers you can choose for your travel is a thermal; be it a top or leggings. For winter travel, a thermal turtleneck is one of the most practical base layers that allows you to forgo a sweater altogether when it isn’t too windy. You can also wear thermal undergarments and wear a shirt on top. Thermal underwear functions as the first layer of protection that helps retain your body warmth. Another trick is doubling your base layer if you’re sensitive to the cold. This may also be a good solution if you come from the tropics and traveling to a winter destination.

2. The insulation: the middle layer

This is the layer will be visible when you are indoor and doesn’t need the protection from the weather. A chic vest, a sleek cardigan, or a blazer are all excellent choices for your middle layer. You have a wide range of options for your middle layer. It’s important to note that you need to plan your outfit depending on the weather on and other external factors.

3. Outer layer

Your outermost winter travel outfits can stop here, or you could add another layer outside for weather protection or a thin layer inside for extra warmth. There is a wide range of items that you can pick for your outermost layer and add to your packing list, and it all depends on the weather and your needs and wants. If the weather isn’t mostly rainy or snowy, as a general rule, wearing a peacoat is an easy way to look put together and fashionable during the colder months.

During your winter travel, your coats are extremely important when it comes to the entirety of your outfits,. If you’re not going to places that are below freezing temperatures and/or infamous for always raining, then pick coats that you feel confident wearing. You’re likely going to look the same in all photos anyway. You won’t be able to show off your cute dresses for your Instagram travel posts unless you’re indoors.

“Think in layers for warmth, think in outfits for packing. Think in both for the perfect combo.”

Monochrome Rules, Especially for Winter Travel Outfits

Black, white, grey, they’re all classified as “neutrals”. Monochrome is timeless. These colors will not go out of season, ever. And they are ever-elegant. On top of that, monochrome is the most comprehensive and easiest to style. By having your wardrobe consists of just monochrome, you’ll know everything goes with everything. This allows you to not pack more simply because you know that turquoise top would only look good with a certain navy skirt you’re packing into your luggage just so that you can wear the top.

Sometimes you can make the exception for beige or taupe. They’re a bit less sharp compared to the sleekness that stark colors such as black or white make, but they make gorgeous neutral shades that you can versatilely mix and match with any of your wardrobe items.

If you’re persistent and don’t want to only wear blacks and greys for some reason (can’t think of any, who doesn’t like wearing black?), or simply want to add some splash of colors to your winter travel outfits, alternatively, you can also color coordinate your outfits. This is extremely important to make sure your outfits match with everything.

An all-black outfit is a powerful statement

All-black outfit is simple yet highly sophisticated. Wearing an all-black outfit during winter is a chance for you to experiment with that much black and striking a balance that’s just right for you. Whether you love wearing wide leg pants, leggings, both, or everything in between, adapt the all-black to your style.

“I don’t do fashion. I am fashion.” – Coco Chanel

Want to make a certain color pop? Wear all-black. Want to create more dimension to your look without betraying the all-black theme of your outfit too much? Pick a dark grey for one of your pieces.

Play with the textures of your clothing pieces. Couple black leather jacket with suede thigh-high boots and a wool skirt. Then you’re good to go strolling around the city streets, then have a dinner date afterward.

It’s difficult to mess up wearing black, or an all-black outfit for that matter. So for those who of you who don’t consider yourself “fashionable”—worry not. Pick the pieces you feel comfortable and confident in, and work it out from there.

Winter travel outfits: Black outfits are ready for every occasion

Wearing an all-black outfit for your travel is one of the tricks that enables you to pack light during your winter travel. A day of sightseeing? Of course. Dinner in the evening? No need to change. Cleverly planned all-black outfits for the everyday outing is going to make your travels even more convenient. Moreover, an all-black outfit for travel eliminates the worry about mixing and matching outfits. Black is one of the neutrals.  Black goes with virtually any color you can think of.

A brilliant reason to pick black for your travel outfits? Black outfits won’t look dirty quickly. You won’t have to wash them for quite a while, or at all, depending on how long you travel. This would also minimize the time and money you may have spent on laundry. Another pro-travel and pro light packing reason to consider an all-black outfit.

Winter travel outfits: Everyone knows how to pack. But how do you to actually pack?

Once you’ve got your packing list down, now is time to get technical. Here are some tips to help ease your travel packing:

Start small: plan your packing with a carry-on

The easiest way to overpack? By giving yourself the opportunity to do so. Bringing out the biggest suitcase you can find would enable you to do exactly that. You’re not going to have enough rooms for everything. And winter travel packing is even moreso. So even though you think you’re going to need a huge suitcase, step back and get a smaller bag.

How much do you usually bring when traveling? One large checked luggage? Then start from there. Downsize your packing gradually. If you usually bring one large luggage, then it may be a good idea to start packing only a carry-on and one personal item. With a limited room to work with, you’re going to have to be more creative with your packing so that you can bring things you truly need.

Packing cubes—you’ll need them whatever the season

Packing cubes are such lifesavers. Many travelers have attested that these travel packing cubes are such a game-changer that changed the way they pack and travel.

The only instances when you don’t need packing cubes is when you’re simply traveling during the weekend and you aren’t bringing much anyway. Bringing very few items mean that you don’t have to compartmentalize your belongings as much. With compartments organizing your belongings, you’ll have so much more ease locating your stuff in the midst of the busy itinerary of your travel.

Keeping your clothes clean. Even when you’re staying at a hotel, there are a lot of instances when the wardrobe is just a tad dusty from disuse. Storing your clothes inside your packing cubes helps keep your clothes clean. If you’re staying at a budget accommodation and you don’t have the luxury to a wardrobe, a packing cube is something brilliant to have. Getting your stuff out and maybe back inside your bags are going to be so much easier when organized. This is a huge game-changer for many people.

Don’t pack it: Wear your bulkiest stuff on the plane

Wear your coat on the plane. Don’t pack it. Coats can easily weigh 2 kg and often more. If for whatever reason, you need to bring two coats (or other bulky items), then, you’re going to need to compress it if you want to save space. Use a compression packing cube to help you with this. A lot of packing cubes are equipped with compression ability. If you already have a packing cube that also acts as a compressor then good! If not, getting one of the specialized packing compression for your bulkiest items is a great idea. Compression cubes would help your packing tremendously by compressing your winter essentials such as your coats and jackets to save room inside your luggage.

Get a dedicated toiletry bag

A dedicated toiletry bag has a purpose in easing your day to day traveling beyond just organizing your travel luggage. A toiletry bag can double as your makeup bag as well. Some travelers have also make a double purpose of these bags as their first-aid kit compartment. That’s one whole less bag to bring.

While forgoing bringing toiletries altogether is sometimes preferable for packing light, circumstances for each traveler is unique. For those who swear by exclusively staying in budget accommodations, not bringing any toiletries may not be an option because some hostels or homestays don’t always stock up the stuff you need. Traveling for a tent or even hammock camping in the outdoor would eliminate the existence of stocked toiletry supply as well. Another option would be to buy all of your toiletries in your destination. But even then, you need a container to store and bring them out whenever you need to bathe. 

If you can’t lift it easily, then you’re already bringing way too much

Always pack light, especially when traveling in winter. Hauling that huge and heavy luggage down in the middle of freezing temperature? Not my idea of travel. Remember that you are going to be the one hauling your luggage. Well, unless you have a personal attendant, but most of us don’t. The more you bring, the more inconvenient, and even difficult, it would be for you to bring your luggage around.

Winter travel outfits packing: Buy a travel luggage scale

While the general rule of thumb is that if it’s too difficult to lift, then it’s already too much for you, having a luggage scale would immediately level up your game.

But Not having to guess the actual weight of your luggage would take a lot of burden out of wondering. Especially when you’re staying at a budget accommodation or rental house like Airbnb that don’t normally have the equipment like a hotel sometime does. The only downside to owning a travel luggage scale is that you have to spend a few extra bucks. And in all honesty, it’s likely worth the investment.

A digital travel luggage scale is something that is extremely convenient and would only benefit you in the long run. Most of them are just the size of what fits in your palm. They don’t take up much space. It’s an extremely convenient device that’s a well-worth investment especially for those who travel a lot. It would also save you so much headache from the worries of limitations thanks to the bulky items you need to bring for a winter destination.

Thigh-high boots: warm, fashionable, and just brilliant

Depending on the materials, thigh-high boots are warmer than thick materials pants or legging materials such as denim or wool. Thigh-high or even just knee-high boots will accentuate the silhouette of your legs and make them appear longer. They’re fool-proof fashion items that would instantly dress you up to complete your winter travel outfits.

Thigh-high boots are definitely among the most favorite pieces of winter travel outfits of all time for me personally. To those who are not used to wearing them, it can be pretty daunting. They’re that piece of clothing that can be seen as quite bold, especially for everyday wear. If you’re curious to try this look but still a bit daunted by them, choosing a pair of flat thigh-highs is a good start. Flat thigh-high boots are also a good choice for travelers who are going to spend a lot of time walking in them. You’ll get the sensual look of thigh-highs without the chore of walking in heels.

Black is generally the best to show the silhouette of your legs and it’s the classic thigh-high look. But shades of brown can be a good variation as they soften the look and they are very neutral, going well with a wide range of colors and outfits.

Thigh-high boots aren’t just fashionable. Good quality of thigh-high boots can give you more warmth compared to leggings or jeans. Investing in a good pair of suede boots is a sure way to level up your winter wardrobe. These boots are perfect for those who aren’t fond of wearing pants but would like similar protection during winter.

Working with thigh-high boots for your winter travel outfits

This fashion piece is extremely versatile. They work best with various styles of skirts. Wearing them on top of a pair of jeans has been a beloved look by many. It’s also a good everyday look that you can comfortably bring for your winter travels.

Pleated mini skirts, pencil skirts, A-line, you name it—virtually everything goes well with thigh-high boots for a put together winter look. Experiment with the shape of your skirts and the length. The only thing you should avoid is wearing long skirts unless hiding your thigh-high boots is your intention.

Winter travel outfits? Blanket scarves!

Blanket scarves are one of the most versatile items that are both fashionable and comfortable. Oversized clothing easily creates a cozy, chic look. Depending on the style you’re aiming to achieve, you can ace an incredibly cute look. Blanket scarves can be super bulky, so make sure that you’re not sacrificing space by bringing them. Again, you can always wear your bulkiest item on the plane in order to decrease the weight of your luggage, and you can even use your bulkiest piece as a makeshift pillow!

Don’t forget a few essential items you need to help protect you from the cold beside your main outfits. You need items to help you retain your body warmth. These are some of the winter travel outfits accessory choices:

Essential winter travel items: don’t forgo your gloves

Your hands are the area of your body that have a very small amount of fat stored. This is why your hands would feel freezing the quickest when it’s exposed. Not to mention, wearing gloves is essential to the health of your skin. This is to prevent hands chapping because of the harsh cold and the dryness that comes with it, which can lead to fissures, especially if you’re traveling to places below freezing temperature.

Gloves are generally very easy to bring and would not put a burden on your packing unless you’re bringing a lot of them. One or two pairs of gloves would be enough. In most cases, having one pair of trusty gloves you always have with you is sufficient for the length of your travel.

A sharp touch of black leather gloves

Now as to what gloves you should be wearing for your winter travel outfits? We recommend just bringing your existing pair for your travel that you’re most comfortable with. However, if you’re up to shop some, perhaps having a pair of black leather gloves to your winter wardrobe addition is the next thing for you. Black leather gloves would not only keep you warm, but they would give you that complete, polished look almost instantly. Since most leather gloves are

Men or women fashion, these black leather gloves would instantly complete your outfit and give them the sharp look. Feeling experimental for your winter outfit? Wear mismatched gloves of a harmonious shade. Pair a black glove with a grey one. Or choose colors that correspond to your overall outfit colors.

Winter travel outfits: play around with styling with hats

Winter is the time when you should experiment with this piece of headwear. One of the versatile favorites of many women is the big-brimmed hat or floppy hat. Not only popular during the cold season, but these big-brimmed hats also found fans during the time of the scorching hot sun as well. These floppy hats would instantly bring that sense of completeness to your overall getup.

A beret is one of those hats that can instantly give you a chic and cute look. It’s also a good way to add a pop of color to your otherwise monochromic outfit during the winter. Whether it’s mauve, maroon, or teal, this military-origin gat piece is a solid addition of your winter travel outfits.

For a homey look that would undoubtedly protect your head from the cold, get your favorite beanie on. Generally, a solid color beanie would work best on a large range of outfits instead of a patterned one. Interested in trying out other hat styles? Go ahead and experiment!

Bring Tank Tops or Camisoles

These pieces are extremely versatile for your winter travel outfits, and you can double on them as an undergarment for the extra warmth, without making your silhouette look bulky. They can be worn later if you’re on a long trip and plan to go to warmer climates. They can also be worn for exercise. Because tank tops and camisoles are very lightweight, they’d likely dry quicker than most of your packing items

Stay Away From What-Ifs

What-ifs are the culprit of of overpacking. Planning your outfits will help minimize the chance of this happening. This is why packing your winter clothes without an outfit coordination planned may well become an overpacking disaster.

You’re not required to put together something entirely new. So don’t get pressured to do it during your winter trip. In fact, ones that are tested usually works best during your travels. Make sure to stay away from what-ifs; you’ll likely end up not wearing or using the piece at all. Pieces that are not coordinated well for your winter travel outfits will likely just take up space in your luggage and collect dust.