Before any great trip there is the inevitable question of what to pack.
For me, one of the biggest packing decisions is “What shoes should I pack?” Not only do shoes take up so much room, you never end up wearing most of them. And, bugger it, you are on holidays! So why not wear your thongs?
In actuality, having your thongs be your travel shoes makes sense and is the practical thing to do.
Your feet also deserve a holiday
Let’s face it. When on holidays, you are going to want to give your feet time out too. No business shows or heels – something lazy and comfy.
But for many of us, holidays include a fair bit of exploring, which also means a lot of walking. So it’s important to make sure your travel shoes will provide the correct support as well as be very comfortable. There is nothing worst than suffering with sore, swollen feet or getting nasty blisters. This can totally ruin a perfect holiday!
The perfect travel shoes
The perfect travel shoes need to be supportive, comfortable, lightweight and the kind of shoes you are actually going to want to wear on your holiday.
In other words, thongs!
But be careful! Wearing flat thongs or poorly made flip-flops could actually be harming your feet. They are likely to leave you feeling exhausted after a day of walking and can also increase the risk of potential foot problems like plantar fasciitis or heel spurs.
So what is the recipe for the perfect travel shoes?
- Always make sure you plan ahead. We all know whenever you get new footwear there is always some breaking in to do. So don’t leave it to last minute, especially if you need to order online. Give yourself time to break in your travel shoes.
- Insist on arch support. It’s very important your new travel shoes, be they thongs or something else, have arch support. Your feet need to be looked after and without the right arch support you will be risking an unhappy holiday.
- Make sure you get the correct fit. When trying on shoes, check with the assistant if you have the right size. If you are buying online check, the website for a sizing and fitting chart. If you are still not sure from the chart, contact the seller by phone to ask for their recommendations. Shoes with arch support, especially thongs with arch support, need to be fitted correctly. A poor fit will not only feel ‘wrong’, but you won’t get the support you need (and the shoes may be uncomfortable).
- Adjust to your travel shoes. If you are not use to wearing arch support or have flat feet at first arch supporting thongs may feel weird. My suggestion is just rotate your thongs with other footwear until the arch of your foot gets use to the new shape. This is especially important with flat feet as the ligaments and tendons in your feet will need to take on a new shape, so rotating every 30-60 mins is suggested if you feel any signs of pain. It usually doesn’t take long for the feet to adjust and this is what podiatrists recommend when fitting orthotics.
- Value for money. Don’t get ripped off! Just because shoes have arch support it doesn’t mean they need to be exorbitantly expensive. Some brand name ‘travel shoes’ and thongs are just so grossly over priced and claim all the benefits in the world. Yes, you want a quality pair, but these are only shoes we are talking about! They shouldn’t need a bank loan. Looking at testimonials or reviews can be a great way to get a feel for the actual value of the product and help you to choose the right pair for you. You can also ask for feedback from people who have tried the product already through social media sites like Facebook.
- Do the thong check. If you’re taking thongs as your travel shoes, make sure they pass the ‘thong check’. They need to be light weight, good to walk in, easy to clean, capable of being worn in water and of solid construction. In other words, properly made and ideally designed so no plugs that can pull out. Nothing worse than a blow out on a holiday!