It packs down into a stuff sack the size of a shoe and keeps me warm in cold climates and chilly planes.
In winter, I don’t dream of going anywhere without my puffer coat. It not only keeps me warm but also packs down really easily. And the more I travel, the more I appreciate a lightweight insulated outer layer that doesn’t take up a ton of space.
Of course, the more expensive flights get these days, the more I appreciate a good deal, too. The Amazon Essentials Hooded Puffer Coat is practically a steal. I used to think I had to spend at least $100 on a winter jacket for it to be warm enough. But after getting this puffer, I’m proud to admit I couldn’t have been more wrong.
The shell, lining, and fill of this Amazon Essentials best-seller are all 100 percent polyester — a durable fabric that also keeps the cost low. Better yet, I can simply toss this jacket in the washing machine without worrying about ruining it. In the past, I’ve had to schlep my duck down puffer jackets to the dry cleaners. These days, I’m all about being practical, which means I’m also a fan of this puffer’s pockets. There are two zippered front pockets large enough to hold my iPhone 12, my wallet, and my keys.
I also love that this puffer, which is available in 21 different colors and sizes XS-6XL, comes with a stuff sack. When compressed, my size small jacket that nearly reaches my knees and has a roomy hood only takes up about as much space as a shoe. It also weighs just 14 ounces — talk about a packing MVP. But despite how lightweight it is, it’s sufficiently warm. I’m currently sporting it in Montana, where the daily highs are only in the mid-30 degrees Fahrenheit. As long as I wear a warm layer like my favorite cashmere sweater underneath, I stay nice and toasty while running errands and walking my dog.
In December I even wore this puffer on a long-haul flight to South Africa. I don’t travel with a thermometer, but I swear the airplane cabin was sub-zero. Since it’s a longer jacket, wearing it feels like you’re wrapped in a blanket burrito. The polyester shell is also water-resistant, so unless I’m out in the rain for hours on end, I stay bone-dry.
Like most Amazon Essentials, this lightweight hooded puffer is one of Amazon’s best-sellers. Out of a total of 15,000 ratings, it has nearly 9,800 perfect five-star ratings, many of which are from travelers like me. “I’ve been wearing it every day since I returned home because I like it so much!” said one shopper who got theirs for a two-week trip to Italy. Another satisfied customer who wore theirs on a Yosemite vacation wrote, “It was comfortable and warm for hiking in 40 degree weather, fit nicely in my bag when it wasn’t needed, and kept me dry through several downpours and waterfall mist trails.”
If you’re worried about how long something this affordable will last, this review is a great testament to its durability: “It’s been [more than] a year, and it still looks brand new although it has many miles being folded up and put in my backpack.” Of course, dozens of reviews speak to this puffer’s packability. “We are going from cold weather to the beach and back, and I didn’t want bulky jackets to carry around,” reads a five-star review titled “Great Coat for the Price.”
As much as I wish my next trip was to the beach, I’m actually going on a 12-day Antarctica cruise with Hurtigruten Expeditions in two weeks. Although the cost of the cruise includes a complimentary parka, I’m still bringing my beloved puffer. I don’t know what the cruise company’s jacket will be like, but I already know the Amazon Essentials Hooded Puffer Coat is warm, lightweight, easy to pack, and too perfect to leave at home. If nothing else, I’ll use it to keep me cozy in the airplane cabin on my 10-hour flight from Atlanta to Argentina. So hurry and snag one for yourself.
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