Basic Clothing For Travel That Everyone Should Know About

basic clothing for travel

It seems like *everyone* is on vacation this summer. The moment you open Instagram, you’ll find a slew of friends, strangers, and celebrities alike posting about their travels to Europe and beyond. Behind every vacation, though, is the stress of planning the trip and packing for the trip. The moment someone books their flights, they’ve already begun a thorough packing list complete for every climate option and every occasion.

No matter where you go — Ibiza, Amalfi, or Upstate New York — one thing remains the same on everyone’s packing list: their basic clothing. If we could give you one packing tip, it would be to pack clothing that’s comfy and casual, in addition to your other high-end pieces.

Whether you’re going for a one-week trip or a weekend getaway, some of the most quality items that you’ll pack consist of comfortable basic tops, basic pants, and basic leggings. At some point while you’re away, you’re going to need travel outfits that don’t consist of bathing suits, beach cover-ups, and high heels. For the plane, for exercise, for hikes, for downtime at the hotel, for walking around museums, you’ll want comfy basic clothing to carry you throughout the day. It can be easy to forget the basics when you’re so busy thinking of the fancy dress you want to wear on a night out in Capri.

The best travel clothes are pieces that are wrinkle-resistant like jeans, leggings, and other basic clothing. Ahead, read about our favorite travel clothing essentials that are comfy, versatile, and can be layered for warm weather or cold weather. Consider this list your travel capsule wardrobe that will never go out of style. Even if trends change, these quality pieces will be on repeat no matter where you travel to next.

Cozy Leggings

cozy black leggings


Pack light by throwing a bunch of leggings in your carry-on. Whether you’re looking for biker short leggings or full-length leggings, you can never have too many of them. We love that leggings stick to the skin and won’t make you trip on anything the way a maxi dress would. Leggings are the perfect travel pants for long plane rides and long walks around a beautiful city. Explore your new favorite destination with basic leggings that you’ll want to wear all day. Pair it with a tank top or short sleeve top for warm weather and throw on a cardigan for cold weather. If a toothbrush and hairbrush are on your travel essentials list, leggings are in the same category of importance.

Shop Back2Basics Leggings Here.

Easy T-Shirts

cropped tee shirt

Perfect White Tee

T-shirts are easy because you don’t have to put too much thought into them. If you think you have enough T-shirts, think again! You can’t go wrong with having too many of this basic clothing. Wear them with a pair of jeans, jean shorts, or leggings. They can be minimalist white tees, graphic tees, crop top t-shirts — you name it. They’re easy to layer with a long sleeve top or blazer if it gets cold. You can wear a sports bra underneath if you’re feeling sporty and pair it with a hoodie for the ultimate outerwear look. Put on your sunnies and you’re ready to adventure in your new favorite city!

Shop Back2Basics Short-Sleeve T-Shirts Here.

Quick Drying Travel Pants

travel trousers


“While cotton is the fastest natural quick-dry fabric to dry, polyester is considered the overall fastest fiber. In less than two hours, polyester garments can be completely dry,” according to Aria Prene, a sustainable foam brand company.

Why would someone need quick-drying clothes for travel? So they can sweat through the day or get wet on a hike/sightseeing or absorb rain faster.

Most of Back2Basics’ clothes are made of cotton. They dry quicker, are breathable, and easily remove stains.

Shop Back2Basics Women’s Pants Here.

Pair of Jeans (Duh)

jeans for travel


This one may seem obvious, but we had to throw it out there. Jeans are a woman’s best friend (besides diamonds of course). Wear them at night with a fancy top or casual tee, depending on the occasion, and you’ll feel like a million bucks. One of the best parts about jeans is that they don’t wrinkle so easily (and when they do, it looks intentional!). You won’t have to worry so much about folding them or vacuum packing them in your luggage. Either way, you can totally pack a hand-held steamer to de-wrinkle other items you’ve packed.

Shop Back2Basics Jeans Here.

Weather-Dependent Swimsuit

solid and striped bathing suit

Solid and Striped

You can skip this if it doesn’t apply to you, but swimsuits are a must if you’re going to a warm-weather destination. Even if you’re worried about overpacking, bathing suits are super lightweight so you can throw in a few along with your underwear, bras, and socks, and they won’t take up too much space. We suggest putting one in your carry-on luggage since there has been a lot of talk this summer about missing checked-in luggages (nightmare!). This will ensure that the moment you arrive at your tropical destination, you can jump in the pool or ocean right away.

Shop Our Favorite Swimsuits Here.

Here is a complete packing list of basic travel clothing that you’ll want to pack no matter your travel destination.

What are some of the things you should pack when you travel?

  • Basic short-sleeve tops

  • Basic tank tops

  • Casual pants for hiking or sightseeing

  • Leggings

  • Pair of jeans

  • Swimsuit (weather-dependent)

  • Tote bag or crossbody bag

  • Comfortable sneakers

  • Flip flops (weather-dependent)

  • Hat and sunglasses (weather-dependent)


Here is a complete list of general clothing packing tips for travel:

What are some tips for packing for a trip?

  • Bring neutral color clothing

  • Pack light

  • Don’t bring too much or too little — pack outfits ahead of time for each day and think of alternate scenarios

  • Bring basic, comfy clothes

  • Bring a bag for the day and one for the night

  • Check the weather before you start packing

Traveling can be stressful, but following these travel clothing tips will allow you to breathe easier knowing you’re prepared for every situation! And remember, comfy basic clothing will never fail you.