Travel Essentials for a Cold Climate

Travelling to a cold climate will require a fair bit of extra planning on your part.  Taking too much clothes can lead to space issues as well as baggage weight problems which can incur extra costs.

Start by researching what kind of weather you will encounter at your destination.  This can be done by investing a little bit of time online.  Also look through your itinerary and see what kinds of activities you have planned.  Select your wardrobe accordingly.  Having said that, always have one set of clothing which covers the worst case scenario!

Remember, you can reuse and recycle clothing in winter by wearing an item twice before cleaning it.  Always pack well before you leave, this will help you to decide which items are absolutely necessary and which are not!  If you have too many bulky items, bring some of them as carry-on luggage.

Here are a few travel essentials and tips to take into consideration while packing for a cold climate destination.

1. Layering


Layering in three distinct layers is one of the secrets to cold weather clothing.  The three layers you need are:

  • Absorption layer. This is usually light polyester, merino wool or silk.  This layer helps to absorb sweat and make it evaporate thus keeping you dry.
  • Insulation layer. This is a thicker layer such as a fleece, turtleneck or some other synthetic clothing item.   This keeps your body heat trapped in and provides a protective barrier to keep cold air out.  Never use cotton, it absorbs cold and does not repel it.
  • Protection layer. This provides a protective outer shell for your body.  Try to pick lightweight fibres that are wind and waterproof.  Make sure these items have panel sections that can be opened if you get too warm.

2. Convertible and Multiple Use Clothing


Pack clothing that can perform a multitude of tasks for example, a warm jacket with removable sleeves that can act as a sleeveless jacket. Also pack clothing that can be used in a number of situations.   This will reduce the space needed in your luggage.

3. Sunglasses

Take along a fashionable pair of sunglasses that offer 100% UV protection.  Remember glare off snow can damage your eyes.

4. Beanie/Head Scarf


Most of your body heat actually escapes through your head.  Not only is a beanie or head scarf fashionable but they will help keep you insulated.  In extreme cold conditions remember to wear face protection as well.

5. Gloves


Gloves are extremely important in cold weather.  If you are in an area of extreme cold, use glove liners for an extra layer of protection.

6. Socks/Shoes


It is very important to keep your feet warm in cold conditions.  Sock liners will provide an extra layer of protection in extreme cold.

Your shoes will need to be waterproof and practical.  That doesn’t mean you cannot make a fashion statement with them! There are lots of brands available that are both practical and look great.

7. Turtleneck


A turtleneck can double as a warm undergarment and can keep your neck warm.  It is perfect to use as insulation in your layering of clothes.  This is a perfect example of clothing with multiple uses.

8. Leggings


Leggings can also have multiple uses, for example, as long underwear or in conjunction with a skirt to form a great outfit when it gets slightly warmer.

9. Don’t Double Up!


Never pack more than one pair of the same or similar items of clothing.   This just takes up unnecessary space.

10. Vacuum Bags



Vacuum backs can save a lot of space!  Make sure you use one for your sweaters, one for your pants and one for miscellaneous clothing items.