Flip-flops can be great to wear on vacation. Their cultural association means that just putting them on can help to conjure up feelings of fun and relaxation. Their distinctive sound announces to everyone that you’re coming and ready for fun. They can also be an escape from the formality of day-to-day life and offer you the chance to literally wiggle your toes in the sand. However, flip-flops aren’t always the best choice, even in places where you might think they would work well.
The first thing to consider when choosing whether or not to wear sandals is how far you will need to walk. On a trip to a major theme park like Disney World or Disneyland, you might end up walking 12 miles in a day. This is a lot of strain to put on a pair of flip-flops, no matter how comfortable they might be. However, if the extent of your walking will be the hundred yards from your beachfront hotel room to the sand, you’re probably in good shape, even if you need to work in a few side trips to the bar over the course of the day.
Second, think about the weather. Wearing a pair of flip-flops in the rain can make an otherwise workable choice of footwear seem miserable. When flip-flops become wet, they don’t stay on your feet as well and can cause blisters. And if you happen to have a wet flip-flop disaster on day one of a long trip in which you’ve planned lots of walking, one rainstorm can end up causing you some serious pain.
Finally, think about what you’re used to. If you spend your whole summer in flip-flops, then switch to a pair of sneakers for a long day of sightseeing, you may end up with worse foot pain than if you’d just stuck with the old standby. If you can, break in a new pair of shoes ahead of time for hard walking. However, if you can’t, your flip-flops may still be your best choice.