When you’re out in the world, there are two things you need: a sense of adventure and … pockets. On men’s clothing, pockets are standard, but women’s clothing in general and dresses in particular, often lack this key feature. Happily, a few companies understand the plight and have designed travel dresses with pockets, so you can go bag-free on your next vacation.
prAna Taxco Dress
This T-shirt dress from prAna is super comfortable and can be worn on its own or as a beach cover-up. It’s got two front hip pockets, plus half-rolled short sleeves for a casual look. The lightweight organic cotton/recycled polyester blend is perfect for summer days.
Coolibar Beach Cover-Up Dress
Headed to the beach but want to leave the beach bag behind? This cover-up dress from Coolibar not only has UPF 50+ sun protection; it also has two big front pockets. The lightweight fabric will actually help keep you cool even though it’s long-sleeved, and its coverage means you won’t have to worry about missing spots on your back with the sunscreen.
Columbia Departure Point Dress
Headed to a tropical destination? Pack Columbia’s Departure Point Dress, which has an omni-shield treatment to help protect against bug bites. The dress is wrinkle-resistant as well, and has zip-closed security pockets.
Royal Robbins Noe Dress
Wearing the Royal Robbins Noe Dress is like wearing a comfy, lightweight T-shirt. It’s made from an eco-friendly fabric that’s wrinkle-resistant, and the length falls below the knee. The dress features two front hand pockets to hold your valuables.
Betabrand No-Sweat Cocktail Dress
Among Betabrand’s impressive selection of travel dresses with pockets, the No-Sweat Cocktail Dress stands out as an elegant option that travels well and frees you from needing to pack that extra evening bag. Not one but two pockets—a zippered side-seam option plus a hidden bust pocket—allow you to head out for a purse-free night on the town.
Torrid Black Stripe Knit to Woven Skater Dress
If you’re looking for a plus-size travel dress with pockets, consider this option from Torrid. Its stretchy cotton/spandex blend is machine washable and will resist wrinkles, and the scoop neck and vertical stripes are flattering for most body types.
United by Blue Ridley Swing Dress
The simple short-sleeved design of the Ridley Swing Dress is casual enough for daily sightseeing but can easily be dressed up for an evening out. The dress falls above the knee and is made of organic cotton, Tencel, and elastane. The capped short sleeves and high scoop neck give you a little more coverage than a sleeveless dress when you’re out in the sun. There are two front pockets.
Betabrand Red-Eye Travel Dress
A more casual travel dress with pockets from Betabrand is the Red-Eye Travel Dress, which features long sleeves with thumbholes and a hood with a built-in eye mask—perfect for sleeping on the plane. This sweatshirt dress has a kangaroo pocket with two zippers to protect your stuff. The polyester/spandex fabric is moisture-wicking and UV protective. Wear this dress over leggings for the ideal, comfy airplane outfit.
Athleta Mara Maxi Dress
Perfect for the resort or the beach, the Mara Maxi Dress from Athleta offers a flowing silhouette and UPF 50+ sun protection. The dress is lightweight, wrinkle-resistant, and easy to pack, and it has two handy front pockets. You can feel good about this purchase from an environmental perspective, too: The dress is made of a fabric that incorporates post-consumer plastic bottles. The Mara Maxi Dress comes in regular, tall, petite, and plus sizes.
Patagonia Fleetwith Dress
Travelers looking for a sporty dress with pockets can try Patagonia’s Fleetwith Dress, made of quick-drying material that resists wrinkles. The dress features cross-back straps and a drawstring waist for a comfortable fit, as well as three pockets, including a concealed one with a zipper.
SCOTTeVEST Debbie Dress
If two or three pockets just aren’t enough, how about seven? That’s what you’ll find in SCOTTeVEST’s Debbie Dress, which has cleverly concealed pockets in places you would—and wouldn’t—expect. The dress falls to just above the knee and is made from a stretchy cotton/spandex blend that’s machine washable and wrinkle-resistant.
ModCloth Living Lightheartedly Sundress
This adorable sundress with pockets from ModCloth has adjustable straps for the perfect fit. Its bright pattern will draw compliments whether you’re at a resort or a restaurant. The sundress is made of 100 percent polyester, which is resistant to wrinkles and can be machine washed.
Toad&Co Muse Dress
The Muse Dress from Toad&Co features cap sleeves, a hemline that falls just below the knees, and a pocket on one side. The lightweight cotton/Modal/spandex blend is both comfortable and flattering, and a drawstring along the side lets you adjust the fit. It’s available in both solid and striped designs.
Royal Robbins Jackson Plaid Dress
This lightweight flannel dress from Royal Robbins is comfortable enough for the plane and, with the help of leggings and a few accessories, can be dressed up or down for cold-weather vacations. Thanks to strategic darts, unobtrusive side-seam pockets, and a side sash, it has a flattering fit. And the cotton-Tencel blend is moisture wicking so you can stay dry and comfortable.
More from SmarterTravel:
- The Best Travel Dresses for Summer
- 5 Travel Wear Pieces That Help You Go from Day to Night
- The 9 Best Travel Hoodies
Follow Sarah Schlichter on Twitter @TravelEditor for more travel tips and inspiration.
Some review products are sent to us free of charge and with no incentive to offer a favorable review. We offer our unbiased opinions, positive and negative, and will never accept compensation to review a product.
Editor’s note: This story was originally published in 2016. It has been updated to reflect the most current information. Caroline Morse Teel and Christine Sarkis contributed to this story.