9 Best Women’s Lightweight Travel Vests With Pockets (2021)

Traveling isn’t always straight forward and preparation is key to get the most out of your vacation, or long term trip. Versatile clothing is one way a traveler can make their life easier which is why many female travelers invest in a quality travel vest to prepare them for changeable weather and to keep their possessions safe, without taking up much room in their suitcase or backpack.

Whether you’re braving the cold of Scandinavia, or the tropical weather of Mexico, a lightweight travel vest is a must have to tackle all weather conditions. Hidden pockets are also a nice bonus to keep valuables such as cash and important documents safe.

A lightweight vest can be worn underneath a thick outer coat in cold conditions, or be worn over a t-shirt in warm weather. They are considered one of the best multi-purpose clothing items for most female travelers and as a result the market is booming with quality options to suit all needs.

What to look for in a lightweight travel vest

  • Light and breathable material to keep you warm in cold conditions and cool on sunny days.
  • Hidden pockets to keep your valuables safe
  • Large outer pockets so you can keep useful items to hand
  • Water resistance
  • Durability
  • Style and comfort
  • Affordability

Below we have listed our 9 best women’s lightweight travel vests with pockets to help you decide which is the perfect one for you.

The prices of our choices range between $50-$340.

girl wearing vest
Photo by Strauss Western on Unsplash

ExOfficio FlyQ Lite Vest

The ExOfficio FlyQ Lite Vest is a versatile and highly intelligent travel vest which pays attention to every detail. This vest contains eleven pockets designated for specific items which include; a chap stick slot, pen slot, touch screen gadget pouch, ID holder, passport holder, key clip, cell phone pocket, camera pocket, water bottle holder and a large multi-purpose back pocket.

This jacket also features an elastic bungee hem cinch to make the vest feel snugger during cooler conditions which can be easily loosened if you are feeling too warm. It comes with a durable, vertical security zip and micro fleeced collar to provide extra warmth.

This bespoke outerwear is a great purchase for anyone who doesn’t want the hassle of carrying a bag as it’s numerous pockets mean you can bring a large number of items on a hike or a stroll around the city, with the piece of mind that they are safely zipped away.

The touchscreen gadget holder also allows you to have your electronic boarding pass ready at airports to help you breeze through security.

Main features

  • Advanced Travel Pocket System
  • Fleece lined collar and hem cinch for extra warmth
  • Durable design

Columbia Women’s World Trekker Vest

This stylish travel vest is extremely well made and resistant to the elements, making it a perfect choice for a city break and a worthy consideration of the best travel vest on the market. If you are looking for a machine washable and long lasting travel vest, then the Columbia World Trekker Vest could be for you.

Made from 100% nylon, the World Trekker Vest is easy to wash and offers a relaxed but not loose fit for extra comfort, while maintaining style. This vest also features multi-functional pockets to ensure all your travel accessories are in easy reach, in addition to a inner security pocket to keep your passport and cash safe from any potential pick pockets.

The outer coating of the vest uses Omni-Shield Advanced Repellency, to keep you and your belongings dry during a sudden downpour.

Main features

  • Water repellent
  • Security pocket and multi-functional pockets
  • Stylish and comfortable

SCOTTeVEST Women’s Featherweight Vest

With fourteen! pockets, the women’s featherweight vest by SCOTTeVEST is not only very comfortable and light but also extremely functional. The pockets on this travel vest are designed to store the following items; phones, wallets, keys, electronics (such as camera/ drone accessories), a Go Pro (action cam), sunglasses, a tablet or Kindle, dog treats, dog leash and more.

The pockets are engineered to provide perfect weight balance across the jacket to prevent any strain in the neck or back and ensuring you do not feel weighed down when you are on the move, or the vest becomes too bulky.

The lightweight poly material helps you feel cool on warm days and remain dry in wet weather. It is complete with two vertical outer pockets and a detachable carabiner to keep your keys safe. In addition, this traveler vest has a RFID blocking pocket to prevent data collection and access to your devices.

Annoying wires are also easily managed with the vest’s personal area (PAN) network solution.

Main features

  • Extremely lightweight
  • Breathable material which makes it perfect for hot weather.
  • 14 pocket system which are perfectly weighted to avoid strain with a specialised weight management system.
  • RFID blocking compartment for electronics

Anatomie Delaney Lightweight Travel Vest

The Delaney travel vest if perfect for all outdoor activities, home or away and is one of the most stylish vests on our list. Built for warmth, this women’s travel vest has a high collar for extra coziness for those autumn and winter hikes.

Anatomie Delaney Lightweight Travel Vest
Photo from Anatomie

Dubbed as a ‘wear everywhere’ vest, it is slim fitting and designed to hug curves, while its long length is flattering to all figures. Although this item is built to look good, it doesn’t ignore performance and is perfect for colder temperatures. The collar also zips into a funnel neck to protect the wearer from the wind and other elements.

The downside to this vest jacket is the lack of security pockets and a lack of pockets overall, with just two large front zip pockets to store your essentials, such as a phone or purse. The focus is clearly on warmth and style, rather than storage but despite this, the Delaney Light weight Travel Vest is still a high quality, functional option. It is made from 92% polyamide and 8% elastane, Anatomie’s signature stretch fabric.

Main Features

  • Stylish slim fit design, with high collar which can be worn folded, or zipped.
  • Two-way zipper
  • Two large front, zip pockets
  • Adjustable Drawstring for extra snugness.
  • Very light and stretchable fabric which is figure-flattering and doesn’t crease.

Best price at time of writing – $340

Orvis Pack & Go Womens Travel Waistcoat

This water proof and quick drying travel vest with pockets is the perfect companion for any vacation and is built to last. This waistcoat can be worn on its own, or as a mid-layer in the winter months. Unzipped, it can also act as a cool outer layer over a T-shirt in summer – an extremely versatile item of clothing which takes up very little room in a suitcase.

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The two interior zippered pockets provide a secure place to keep valuables such as a passport, credit cards, phone or purse, while the open pocket allows you to keep handy items within easy reach, while you are on the move. The vest’s front zip also features a storm flap to protect you from the elements should the weather turn. This item also dries in super quick time should you get caught in a shower.

The material is crease-proof, meaning the vest can easily be stuffed into the sack provided, or a dry bag for any camping trips. Not only that but it is also bluesign fabric approved, giving you peace of mind that it is safe for the environment and for the workers who made it. It is made from 100% polyester and is machine washable, making this vest essential travel gear for people who are always on the move.

Main Features

  • Designed to be worn on its own, or as a warm mid-layer
  • Resistant to stains, wind and water.
  • Dries very quickly so it is ready for your next adventure
  • Durable zip with storm flaps
  • Two interior zipped pockets and one large open pocket
  • Comes with its own stuff sack
  • Environmentally and worker friendly

MIER Women’s Lightweight Softshell Vest

The MIER Women’s Lightweight Softshell Vest is designed for performance and is completely windproof and water resistant to help you tackle tricky weather conditions. Perfect for most seasons, this travel vest is fleece lined for warmth in winter but also breathable during the milder months, in additional to being comfortable.

The Softshell vest is equipped with 8 multi-purpose pockets which include; an external chest zip pocket, 2 secure zip hand pockets, an inner drop pocket, an inner hook and loop pocket and 3 inner zip pockets. This array of pockets means you can carry a range of items without feeling weighed down, while protecting valuables from being dropped or stolen.

This travel vest also has a zip-off hood to protect you from the wind and rain, while an adjustable draw cord can ensure a more snug fit if the temperature drops. The chin guard also means your neck can be fully covered when zipped, providing further protection. Every detail has been considered, with the elasticated arm holes for an enhanced fit.

It is made from 92% polyester and 8% spandex, with a YKK zipper. The strong and reliable zipper has a cord which can be easily pulled while wearing gloves, or if your hands are cold. The vest is not only functional but also lightweight and can be quickly folded into your suitcase.

This item also comes with a two year warranty which means the vest will be repaired or replaced, free of charge if it does not meet the quality of workmanship standards or there is a problem with the material.

Main Features

  • Wind and water resistant
  • Adaptable for multiple seasons
  • 8 multi-function pockets
  • Zip-off hood and chin guard
  • Lightweight and comfortable
  • Two year warranty

The North Face Women’s Thermoball Travel Vest

The Thermoball Travel Vest Gilet from The North Face offers guaranteed quality and performance for travelers who want to stay warm and pack light. A great option for hikers who want to be prepared for changing weather conditions. This women’s travel vest’s synthetic fill insulation reduces heat loss and increases warmth even in very cold temperatures, even when damp. The nylon face material has also been given a water repellent finish to keep you dry during showers or snow, although it is not completely waterproof, so a jacket will be required in heavy rainfall.

It can be folded up and stored in its own pocket which makes the vest highly portable, meaning it is perfect for travelers looking to pack as light as possible. A fantastic choice for trekkers too who want to keep an extra warm layer in their rucksack.

A secure, internal zip pocket allows you to keep valuables safe, with two external side pockets to keep any extra items or to just keep your hands warm.

The outer fabric and insulation is also made from recycled materials, ensuring less waste ends up in landfill, ultimately helping the environment. It is made from 100% polyester, with a VISLON® center front zip.

Main Features

  • Light weight travel vest
  • Insulated to reduce heat loss and increase warmth
  • Stows away in the hand pocket, turning into a compressed pouch which takes up very little room in a rucksack or luggage.
  • Water repellent
  • Internal security pocket
  • Environmentally friendly production

Athleta Rock Ridge PrimaLoft Women’s Travel Vest

This vest is built for medium to high intensity workouts such as running or hiking, as well as general lightweight outerwear, as it is effective at retaining warmth in cold conditions. The lightweight, recycled fabric means this vest is cool in summer and can be worn over a thin layer, it can also be folded down and takes up very little room if you have a less than generous baggage allowance.

Athleta Rock Ridge PrimaLoft Women's Travel VestA
Photo from Rei

This is a perfect travel vest for women who like to be on the move and don’t want travel with too many clothes. One of the best travel vests on the market that we could find due to its great workmanship and fitted, sleek design. The knit piecing allows for extra mobility and the recycled nylon fabric means this item is eco-friendly. It is also available in a longer length.

It is water repellent in light rain, as well as being abrasion resistant, reducing the chances of nicks, tears and scuffs. The Synthetic Primaloft Eco insulation offers an alternative to traditional animal based insulation and this product is also machine washable.

It comes with a hidden safety pocket to store essentials while walking, big enough to hold items such as a cell phone.

Main Features

  • Made for medium and high intensity work outs
  • Retains warmth in cold weather
  • Eco-friendly and light weight material
  • Water repellent in light showers
  • Hidden security pocket

SCOTTeVEST RFID Traveler Vest Women

The second SCOTTeVEST RFID travel vest on our list is made in the manufacturer’s signature style to keep the wearer safe, organised and cool. This RFID travel vest contains 18 pockets to hold all the essentials and ‘nice to haves’ so you don’t have to compromise and leave things at home, or carry a backpack. Perfect for an around the world trip, or just a walk in the park – This is a more than worthy contender for the best travel vest for women on the market.

Made from light and breathable polyester, it can be worn as a mid or top layer depending on the climate. It is recommended for spring, summer and fall.

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The tablet pocket is compatible with devices which have up to an 11″ screen and the phone pocket can store cell phones such as the IPhone XS, or smaller. The collar contains ‘Bud Buckets’ to keep your earphones organised and out of the way.

Other pockets include; a glasses pocket, camera pocket, 2 x MyMemory pockets to store SD cards, 2 x pen pockets, a travel documents pocket, ID pocket and a removable, RFID blocking pocket. A great purchase for anyone looking for security and requires a travel vest with hidden pockets.

Main Features

  • 18 pockets, including a removable RFID blocking pocket
  • Signature SCOTTeVEST design
  • light and breathable fabric, perfect for 3 of the 4 seasons.
  • Earphone management

Which is the best women’s travel vest with pockets?

Price

The travel vests at the lower end of the price scale are the Columbia World Trekker vest and the MIER Softshell Vest, selling for $70 and $50, respectively. Both vests offer excellent value, particularly MIER’s offering with 8 pockets, water resistance and a detachable hood, in addition to a 2 year warranty. If you are looking to grab yourself a bargain and don’t want to spend over $100 on a travel vest but are still looking for good quality and functionality, then these two options are worthy of your consideration.

If you are willing to stretch the budget a little further but are not willing to pay upwards of $200 then SCOTTeVest’s offerings are both high quality and very reasonable at $149. As you would expect from this company, the travel vests come equipped with an array of multi-purpose pockets, including an RFID blocker pocket to protect your details.

At the top end of the scale, we have the Anatomie Delaney Lightweight Travel Vest at $340! We have included this high end option due to its stylish design, great workmanship and reliable brand. If looking good is a priority and you are willing to treat yourself, then this may be the perfect travel vest for you.

girl with vest top
Photo by Allef Vinicius on Unsplash

Functionality

We have divided the functionality comparison into two parts, pockets and weather proofing.

The two SCOTTeVEST options lead the way in terms of the amount of pockets included in the vest, with 14 on the Featherweight vest and 18 on the RFID vest. Meanwhile, the ExOfficio FlyQ Lite Vest comes in at a respectable third, with eleven pockets, however, a blocking pocket is not included but it is capable of holding a water bottle which its rivals cannot.

If you are looking for a women’s travel vest which can carry all your tech then the RFID vest is the stand out product in this department as it is capable of storing a tablet, cell phone, camera, additional memory cards and even has ‘Bud Buckets’ to stop your earphones getting in the way or becoming tangled.

When it comes to defending you from the elements then the best travel vests are; The Orvis Pack & Go Women’s Travel Waistcoat and the MIER Softshell Travel Vest which both offer the best water resistance of our choices. So if you are planning a rainy day of sight seeing in Europe, they would be the best choice to keep you dry and warm.

In terms of insulation, the North Face Women’s Thermoball Travel Vest and the Athleta Rock Ridge PrimaLoft Women’s Travel Vest both score high for warmth retention and are recommended for cold conditions. Both are also made from fabric which repels water but are not fully resistant, meaning a top layer will be required in heavy rainfall.

Style

All of our picks have been chosen for their sleek and tasteful style but, as you would expect from the most expensive travel vest on our list, the Anatomie Delaney vest is our favourite when it comes to style and would be perfect for a city break when the weather is slightly unpredictable.

If you are looking for a well known brand, the North Face Thermoball is a popular option and the firm have made a name for themselves across the world when it comes to high quality outerwear. This vest not only looks good but it also has excellent weather-proofing.

girl sat on bench
Photo by Jevgenij Voronov on Unsplash

The Environment

When buying clothing, it is important for a lot of people that what they choose to wear is environmentally friendly and the people who made the item did so in acceptable working conditions. The Orvis Pack & Go Travel Vest is Bluesign fabric approved which is an organisation that ensures the responsible and sustainable manufacturing of textile consumer products – one of the best hallmarks of humane and eco-friendly clothing.

The Athleta Rock Ridge PrimaLoft Women’s Travel Vest uses Synthetic Primaloft Eco insulation to offer an alternative to traditional animal based insulation, also a fantastic option when it comes to protecting the planet.

Typical of a well known brand such as The North Face, the thermoball travel vest also has an eye on the environment, using fabric and insulation which is 100% made from recycled materials.

Conclusion

It is hard to choose between our selection and definitively say which is the best travel vest for women but based on the previous breakdown, looking at the various aspects and redeeming features of each of the travel vests featured in this article, there is one contender which earns numerous mentions.

The North Face Women’s Thermoball is one of the best travel vests we could find for under $200 and although it lacks the amount of pockets and features that can be found in one of its rivals, such as the SCOTTeVest pairing, it makes up for it in a number of other categories.

The Thermoball is one of the best on the market in terms of warmth retention and creation due to its thick insulation. It also stays dry in light rain and the option to store this vest away in its own pocket means it wins hands down in terms of portability.

It is stylish and a trusted brand, meaning it can be worn for a number of different occasions and isn’t limited to travel situations and outdoor exercises, such as running or hiking. The environment is also at the forefront of The North Face’s production values and the entire travel vest is made from 100% recycled materials, including the insulation.

In second, we have to mention the RFID Travel Vest for Women, purely for its impressive number of pockets and trust worthy brand which is a market leader when it comes to affordable, effective travel vests for men and women.

We hope this article has provided you with enough recommendations to choose the perfect travel vest to take with you on your vacation or adventure. We have tried to keep all budgets in mind and ensured all 9 products have received positive feedback and are sold by reputable websites. Happy Traveling.