The 8 Best Travel Hat Boxes of 2023 | Travel + Leisure

Travel + Leisure / Brian Kopinski

If you’ve ever traveled with a hat, you know it’s a terrible idea to shove it in your suitcase or purse. That’s a surefire way to bend the brim and otherwise misshape it. Instead, we recommend investing in a sturdy, trip-friendly hat box when regularly vacationing with these items. In fact, we’ve researched a wide range of suitable options depending on how many hats you’re traveling with, and their sizes, many featuring convenient carrying options like straps or trolley sleeves.

Our favorite hat box is the Inner Large Hat Box because it’s light and soft and has various carrying possibilities. But if you’re looking for something specific like a baseball cap carrier or something for multiple hats, read on for our top picks.

Our Top PicksBest Overall:Inner Large Hat Box at WalmartJump to ReviewBest Hardside:Brixton Fedora Travel Case at Brixton.comJump to ReviewBest Softside:HappiBox Hat Storage Box at AmazonJump to ReviewBest Style:Steamline Hatbox Deluxe at NordstromJump to ReviewBest for Single Hats:Gigi Pip Leather Hat Carrying Tote at Gigipip.comJump to ReviewBest for Multiple Hats:Treehouse London Felt Hat Storage Box at AmazonJump to ReviewBest for Wide-brim Hats:Calpak Large Hat Box at Calpaktravel.comJump to ReviewBest for Baseball Caps:New Era Cap Carrier at Neweracap.comJump to Review

Best Overall

Inner Large Hat Box


View On WalmartWhy We Love It

Three different carrying straps makes travel ultra convenient.

What to Consider

It’s softsided so may not be suited for the most delicate hats.

This soft-sided travel case is perfect for stashing fedoras or other wide-brim hats while you travel. Though it can certainly be carried on its own, we love that it’s lightweight and slim enough to be packed inside your suitcase as well.

This product tops our list for multiple, comfortable carrying options. It’s equipped with a non-slip top handle, adjustable shoulder straps (which can be worn on one shoulder or two like a backpack), and a trolley sleeve if you prefer to slide it onto your suitcase handle. There’s also a small, transparent slip on the outside, which you can use to put your name and contact info in case you lose it.

Price at time of publish: $59

The Details: 5.9 x 14.6 x 13.19 inches | 2.4 pounds | Ethylene-vinyl acetate | Fits 1 hat

Best Hardside

Brixton Done Proper Fedora Travel Case


View On Brixton.comView On Buckle.comWhy We Love It

It’s as sleek as it is sturdy.

What to Consider

It’s pretty bulky if you’re only carrying one hat.

Made specifically for wide-brim hats like fedoras, this fabric-covered, hard-shell travel case will protect delicate brims from bending. Its two carrying options include a leather top handle and an adjustable and detachable shoulder strap. The stylish case comes in a cream exterior with brown leather details or a gray exterior with black leather details. Inside, you’ll find a silky fabric liner with a large slip pocket and a smaller zip pocket. Feet at the bottom help it stand on its own.

Price at time of publish: $159

The Details: 15 x 6 inches | Fits 3-4 hats

Best Softside

HappiBox Hat Storage Box


View On AmazonWhy We Love It

It can hold up to 10 beach hats.

What to Consider

This is not the sturdiest option for tossing inside a suitcase.

A waterproof fabric keeps toppers safe from accidental messes or spills in this travel-friendly case. You can fit up to a whopping 10 beach hats (with a 15-inch diameter or less) into this expandable case, which has a convenient transparent panel for peeping what’s inside. While it’s great as a closet organizer, top and side handles make it suitable for travel as well (though we wouldn’t recommend tossing it inside a suitcase). When not in use, it collapses down to 1.5 inches tall.

Price at time of publish: $33

The Details: 16 x 8 inches | 1.3 pounds | Waterproof fabric | Fits 10 hats

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Best Style

Steamline The Botanist Pink Hatbox Deluxe


View On NordstromView On Steamlineluggage.comWhy We Love It

You’ll want to put this beachy, vintage-feeling hat box on display.

What to Consider

It’s expensive if you plan to keep it hidden in a suitcase.

We dare you to find a cuter hat box than this peachy case splashed with hand-painted palm fronds and tropical flowers. Inside, the aesthetic splendor continues with a pastel pink and white-striped lining and a slip pocket for small essentials. The hardsided case is plenty sturdy, and detachable tan shoulder straps make toting this box a breeze. Still, when not in transit, the case makes for stunning storage and décor right at home, too.

Price at time of publish: $475

The Details: 15 x 14 x 6 inches | 3.5 pounds | Fibreboard, leather, plastic and silvertone plate | Fits 3 hats

Best for Single Hats

Gigi Pip Leather Hat Carrying Tote

Gigi Pip

View On Gigipip.comWhy We Love It

The multifunction tote makes the perfect carry-on bag if you’re traveling with one hat.

What to Consider

This bag doesn’t keep your hat shielded from the elements.

If you’re only traveling with a single hat, a hat box may end up being bulkier than it’s worth. Instead, consider a tote bag (that can double as your personal item bag) with nifty exterior straps for securing your wide-brim hat.

In this genuine leather bag, the innovative “U” strap cradles the crown while the side straps secure the brim on either side. The straps are adjustable and lay flat against the bag when not in use. Inside the tote, you’ll find a zippered pocket and an open pocket.

Price at time of publish: $296

The Details: 20 x 14.2 inches (minus straps) | 100 percent leather | Fits 1 hat

Best for Multiple Hats

Treehouse London Felt Hat Storage Box


View On AmazonWhy We Love It

The box folds away when not in use.

What to Consider

The transparent window only allows you to see the top hat.

If you’re the kind of person who plans a different hat for each vacation outfit, you’ll appreciate this stackable organizer that can fit up to 10 hats. The case is made of high-density felt, which is stronger and thicker than most felt, while still being lightweight enough to toss in your suitcase. (If you prefer to carry it separately, a shoulder strap makes that easy.) It is dirt-resistant, odorless, and capable of holding a good amount of weight. Furthermore, it has good abrasion resistance and won’t be damaged by a hat’s tip or any hard objects either.

Price at time of publish: $23

The Details: 19 x 11.5 inches | 1.35 pounds | felt | Fits 10 hats

Best for Wide-brim Hats

Calpak Trnk Large Hat Box


View On Calpaktravel.comWhy We Love It

The beautiful textured exterior comes in three neutral hues.

What to Consider

At 6.7 pounds, it’s fairly heavy on its own.

With a 53-liter packing capacity, this ultra-large case has room for much more than just hats. Stow sunglasses, a water bottle, or other small- to medium-sized essentials in the large interior slip pocket. In fact, even if you’re not traveling with a hat, this sleek case can double as a carry-on or weekender bag with its adjustable and removable shoulder strap. If you are toting a wide-brim hat (up to 18.5 inches in diameter), the hardshell, water-resistant exterior will keep it well protected from any bumps, bends, or spills.

Price at time of publish: $205

The Details: 20 x 8.5 inches | 6.7 pounds | Polycarbonate and polyester

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Best for Baseball Caps

New Era Cap Black 6-pack Cap Carrier

New Era

View On Neweracap.comWhy We Love It

With a six-cap capacity, it’s a great bang for your buck.

What to Consider

It won’t accommodate wide-brim hats.

Traveling with multiple baseball caps is a breeze with this organizer which can accommodate up to six flat-brim styles. All-over EVA foam keeps hats protected and secure while on the go. The case is small enough to toss inside your suitcase, or use the adjustable carrying strap or rubber carrying loop to tote it separately. It opens and closes via a dual zipper, and vent holes on the bottom free any odors and keep hats fresh. When you’re not on the road, store your hats in this case inside your closet to keep them dust-free, too.

Price at time of publish: $35

The Details: 13 x 10 x 5.5 inches | Polyester and EVA foam | Fits 6 hats

Tips for Buying Travel Hat Boxes

Determine the best size and shape

It’s important to consider how many hats you’ll want to pack before determining the best hat box for your purposes, as various options have different capacities. Measure your largest and widest hat to make sure it fits inside the selected case.

How you plan to carry your hat case is important as well. If you’re hoping to place it inside a checked suitcase, make sure to measure the hat box against your suitcase first to ensure it fits. If you plan to tote it separately as a carry-on or personal item, look for adjustable shoulder straps in a wide width for comfort.

Choose the proper material

Hardshell hat boxes will be the most protective, however, they also tend to be a heavier option. If you’re traveling by plane, you may want to invest in a hardside case that can withstand being jostled around. Water-resistant cases are also great for mass-transit travel as they can keep items safe from unexpected spills.

If you’re traveling by car, you may be OK with a softside case, which will be easier to carry. Soft cases are also perfect for closet storage, as they help keep hats organized and shielded from dust.

Frequently Asked QuestionsHow do hat boxes protect hats?

Hat boxes have rigid sides so hats don’t get crumbled and smushed in your luggage. The shape of a hat box should reflect the type of hat you’re carrying — for example, wide-brim hat boxes tend to be large and round, while hat cases meant for baseball caps tend to be smaller. A hat box will keep your accessory separate and secure from any potentially damaging sharp objects or liquids in your luggage (or elsewhere). Hat boxes can also keep your hats protected from dust while you store them in your closet at home.

How do I travel with a hat?

If your hat box has a shoulder strap, you may wish to use it as a personal item or carry-on in order to save suitcase space. Many hat boxes will be able to accommodate other small items — such as sunglasses or wallets — so be sure to check the capacity if you’re hoping to stash a few extras in the case as well.

If you want to check your hat box on its own, we recommend a hardshell hat box as those will be best able to withstand the jostling around that happens on a luggage belt or on a plane. Make sure the hat box has secure zippers or clasps, and that you detach any straps before checking the case.

If you have a smaller, more lightweight hat box, you may opt to put it inside your checked suitcase. An alternative way to carry a single hat you plan to wear most of the time is by using a hat clip, which you can secure to the outside of a bag. They come in a variety of price points and styles, from simple clips to fancy leather options.

Why Trust Travel + Leisure

For this story, Talia Ergas scoured the web for the best hat boxes in every category, paying close attention to durability, capacity, material, size, and shape.

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