In my recent post about Why You Should Wear Travel Compression Socks On Your Next Flight, I mentioned how long hours of inactivity on the plane makes my feet cold, so I like to boost the circulation to my feet with compression socks. But, the truth is, travel is more than just the time sitting on a plane.
If you're like me, you may be "on the road" in the literal sense during COVID. I take short trips around California to nearby adventure as a means of escape. In these instances, I've felt the need for a more versatile sock.
Why I Want An All Around Travel Sock
Whether you're literally on the road or on some other transportation, your feet are put to the test all day while in transit. Road trips though typically mean daytime, outdoor activities crammed into a busy schedule. You end up driving to a location, hopping out to explore, then shooting off down the road to the next spot. You pass through a range of temperatures - hot car, cold outdoors, sweaty hikes - throughout the day, which directly impacts your feet.
But how often will you actually change your socks each day? Likely never, even with sweat-intensive activities.
For this reason, I want a sock that's cushioning, comfortable in a variety of environments, and keeps stinky feet from becoming an issue.
Best Roadtrip Sock Choice: Merino Wool
Merino wool is an exceptionally well-suited material for your feet. It is much softer and thinner than typical wool, but offers the same benefits. It's naturally temperature-regulating to keep your feet warm when it's cold out by trapping air near your skin, but also is moisture wicking to cool them off when you sweat.
Merino wool also combats odor-causing bacteria to neutralize smells and keep fabric fresh. Trust me, your roadtrip pals will agree about this.
It's no surprise then that best everyday socks for general traveling (standing, sitting, walking, hiking) are ones made with at least some merino wool.
Choosing Your Merino Wool Socks
There are a few things to consider when picking the right merino wool socks. In general, the higher the percentage of merino wool, the more expensive. Some pairs get into the $30+ range, which I find to be too much.
I also prefer socks that are NOT anklets. If you're going to be switching shoes (for example from sneakers to hiking) its best to have socks that come up far enough to prevent rubbing. On a drafty plane, the added bonus of higher socks is that it prevents your ankles and legs from getting cold.
For this reason I have been wearing merino wool calf travel socks that are a blend with nylon. They're not too expensive, and they are quite simply the best everyday travel socks for summer and winter.