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A common concerns for many travelers are trips that require clothing for both cold and warm climates. Take a look at the easy solution: Layers!
Please note: there is an updated version of this article. Please read it here!
How to Pack for Cold and Warm Weather Travel
Start by reading these general tips on packing for winter travel:
- Capsule Wardrobe for Winter
- How to Pack for Cold Weather
- How to Stay Warm in Cold Weather
- Extreme Cold Weather Clothing Strategies
- The Secret to Packing Light in Winter
- The Best Travel Shoes for Winter
Sunglasses | Watch | Necklace | Dress | Crossbody | Flats
Warm Weather Travel
Dress | Tights | Scarf | Tall Boots | Coat
Cold Weather Travel
When you have a trip that includes destinations with both cold and warm weather, the simple solution is to layer. In the above example, you can see how easily you can transform a summer outfit into a winter one by layering a cardigan, coat, and tights over a summer dress.
Find out how to turn any one of your dresses into versatile dresses!
The Cold vs Warm Weather Ratio
Think about how many days you will be in warm vs cold weather. If you have a 10 day trip to Europe and will be spending 7 days in the cold and 3 days in warm weather, plan for 70% of your travel wardrobe to be for cold and 30% to be for the heat.
By using layering techniques like the one shown above you can make the most use of your clothing to maximize your travel wardrobe.
To learn how to create a Capsule Wardrobe, please read TFG’s Pack Light Stylishly: The Ultimate Guide!
You can still pack your travel capsule wardrobe in a small suitcase even when you travel in cold weather by using packing cubes to compress your clothing as shown in this video!
Watch this video and learn how to pack for a trip with hot and cold weather
What are your tips and tricks for multi-climate travel? Share in the comments below!
For more packing tips, please read:
- 10 Step Guide to Avoid Overpacking
- 10 Step Guide to Packing for Europe
- How to Choose Travel Shoes
- How to Pack for Transitional Climates
Hope you enjoyed this easy solution to traveling in both cold and hot climates. Please share it with your friends on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. Thanks for reading!
My issue is leaving from Boston to Florida by air in January? Winter jackets take up so much space and the i wont’ need it until I return. Logan airport (Boston) is pretty chilly in January
Appreciate any suggestions
Hi Patricia, you might find this article interesting for a layering strategy when traveling from cold to hot climates: https://www.travelfashiongirl.com/traveling-from-cold-to-hot-climates-my-layering-strategy/
I would also highly recommended that you join our TFG facebook group and post your question there: https://www.facebook.com/groups/travelfashiongirls/
It’s a fabulous community of helpful female travelers that love to share their travel advice and recommendations.
Hope this helps. Have the most amazing time on your travels!
Great idea! I leave for Paris Thursday and need some layering option for what looks like some rainy days ahead!
We are travelling to Palm desert mid October till November 4th Please what do I pack for my husband and I ? We are both 80yers of age .Thank you .
Very helpful article. Traveling in the fall to Spain for 3 weeks in sept/Oct. good to know that the women in northern Spain don’t dress up and are casually cute with bright colors!!
I always check the weather a few days out to be sure my clothes will cover the weather. I have found packing a tank top and sweater very helpful in changeable weather. Thank you for your tips on casual vs dressy countries.
Hi we are travelling to Netherlands UK Croatia & Italy in June
I don’t want to be dragging a lot of baggage and would ideally like to have 1 carry and my tote. Can you suggest a few items that I will be able to get a lot of use from please.
Cheryl from Australia
Hi Cheryl, have a look at our 10 step guide to Europe for some tips to help you with what to pack: https://www.travelfashiongirl.com/10-step-packing-guide-europe/ You may also find this article interesting where I discuss what I packed for my 2 week summer trip to Europe last year: https://www.travelfashiongirl.com/clothing-for-2-weeks-in-europe-summer/ I would also highly recommend that you join our TFG facebook group and post your question there: https://www.facebook.com/groups/travelfashiongirls/ Its a fabulous community of helpful female travelers that love to share their advice and clothing recommendations. Hope this helps. Have an incredible trip!
I’m going to the Amalfi coast next week for two weeks. It looks like it’s in the 60’s in the day and 50’s at night. We will also be in Rome for a few nights. I can’t imagine wanting a coat on the coast. Would you just pack a few long cardigans and layer, a puffer, a trench, or a thin wool coat? I want to feel casual but not be freezing either. Thank you!
Hi Julie, thank you for reaching out! Have a look at our 10 step guide to Italy for tips for what clothes to pack for the weather: https://www.travelfashiongirl.com/10-step-packing-guides/10-step-packing-guide-italy/ You may also find this article about the Amalfi coast helpful, (have a look at the section about what to pack for Fall): https://www.travelfashiongirl.com/what-to-wear-in-the-amalfi-coast/ It would depend on how badly you feel the chill, pack sweaters or cardigans which you can easily layer over the rest of your clothes for any cold days and evenings, and then also have a waterproof outer layer, such as your trench coat or puffer jacket for any rain. Hope this helps. Have an amazing trip.
Hi! I’m traveling to Peru at the end of October. We will be in Lima for 4 days then Cuzco and Machu Picchu for another 3 days. Any tips on how to pack for two very different experiences? Thanks!!
Hi Melanie, thank you for your question! Have a look at this 10 step guide for packing for trips with mixed weather or different climates: https://www.travelfashiongirl.com/10-step-guide-to-packing-for-different-climates/ It may be the best place to start for tips for what to pack. Remember to check the weather forecast for both destinations! Have an awesome trip!! 🙂
I’m going to Paris Thhe first week of April. I only want to wear dresses. I don’t mind layering. What’s acceptable amount of layering with looking like I’m wearing every item in my wardrobe? Also if I wear jewel tones in the spring or things like magenta peacoat will I stick out more like a sore thumb? Thank you
Hi Mary, have a look at these articles on how to layer your clothes: https://www.travelfashiongirl.com/how-to-layer-clothes-for-winter/ https://www.travelfashiongirl.com/how-to-layer-clothes-for-winter/ Also take a look at this article on what to wear in Paris: https://www.travelfashiongirl.com/what-to-wear-in-paris-packing-list-and-capsule-wardrobe-ideas/ you may find it helpful about what colour clothing to wear! Have a great trip 🙂
Hi, I need expert advise I am planning to travel to Europe in April to Rome, Lisbon, Seville and Paris and I have no idea what to pack, I dont want to overpack either. It is my firts time visiting! I am extremely excited but also estress because I want to bring with me pieces of clothing functional that I can mix and match.HELP
Hi Caroline, our ten step packing guide for Europe offers step-by-step info to help you find everything you need to know: https://travelfashiongirl.com/10-step-packing-guides/10-step-packing-guide-europe/ Have a great trip!
I am going to Florence for four nights on this Thur 6th April and travelling on to Venice for three nights. Please tell me what to pack.
Take a look at our Italy guide for everything you need to know: https://travelfashiongirl.com/10-step-packing-guides/10-step-packing-guide-italy/
Such a dilemma and I can never seem to get it right. I travelled to Paris which was very cold in April 2 weeks later to hot and cold Nice then to a cold and hot Berlin,,, a hot Italy and then a cruise around the Greek Islands.At Nice airport I saw the perfectly dressed woman and said to her i usually look like you. My classic black long dress was stained, no laundromats I could find,,,classic black flat was also looking worse for wear , after tramping cobble stone streets. bag just purchased was too heavy and new season cashmere jumper teamed with black classic had remnants of the morning croissant. Unfortunately weight gain is also a big problem… one leaves rather happy with all the preparations and purchases,,, but days into the trip or even as I filled my travel bag ( thief proof , suitable colour) with water and cosmetics floated to the top on the plane just before touch down. So a few lessons learned,,,, if you don’t wear shorts or fitness gear with ugly walking shoe you will struggle, next time take winter, fine wool trench, classic black non crease pant. Some sort of acceptable runner!!! look at new sites where fitness outfits are mixed with the classic trench tragic though if you are a certain age,,, find a crush up puffer hate them but try try,,,,,flat black boot,bikinis yes all european women wear them !!!! wraps , scarves, personal hairdresser, valet service etc !!!!!! enjoy
I always take materials that are not inherently for “warm” or “cold”. Synthetics and fine wool seem to do the best at multi-tasking (no angora, no linen). Also–depending on where you are headed, remember cold doesn’t necessarily mean winter! So brighter colors and cute summer scarves all can be incorporated.
great tips, thanks Heather!