You’ve bought your flight ticket and insurance, organised visas and said your goodbyes…Now you just need to pack your bags and hop on a plane – easy right?
Knowing what to pack for a long trip can sometimes be daunting. Luckily we’ve been there and have all of the hints and tips you need to pack the right things for your trip to South East Asia
What to pack?
Our best bit of advice? Travel light! You’ve probably heard it before but we’re telling you again! Until you’ve packed up and left home to start your travels it’s hard to get your head around the fact that whatever you take with you is yours to carry around for the duration of your travels.
We understand it can be tough to leave behind your beloved teddy bear, favourite clothes and your entire shoe collection but trust us, you’ll be happy you did! Think of all of the awesome souvenirs, trinkets and random things you’ll accumulate along the way and make sure there is space for them in your bag. If you can fill ¾ of your bag and leave the rest empty, you’ve done well!
Pack enough loose fitting clothes to last you for a few days and remember that the majority of your time will be spent in bikinis/boardies, shorts & flip flops. You will come across washing machines wherever you go and next day laundry services in Thailand and Vietnam are readily available & cheap!
Luckily, lots of the things you need to take with you can be bought when you get there so if you do forget something, it’s not the end of the world! South East Asia has some of the biggest and best street markets in the world where you can buy clothes (slogan tees, swimwear etc) sunglasses, hats, knock off bags and jewelry and in fact anything else you may want to buy. You’ll also always come across a pharmacy or two for all of your toiletry needs so there’s no need to stock up on shampoo and conditioner before you start your trip!
Here are a few of our ‘Ultimate’ packing tips for Thailand and Vietnam:
- Take insect repellent & suncream with you. They can be pretty expensive to buy in certain South East Asian countries, especially on the islands.
- Pack dark clothes-You will get grubby and you can get away with them looking better for longer
- Take something small that reminds you of home (photos and small mementos)
- Take into account the culture of the country you’re travelling to and bear in mind that when visiting temples most countries in South East Asia ask that your shoulders and knees are covered. Girls, bring a maxi skirt to cover your legs!
- Roll your clothes. It will save space in your bag and keep your clothes from getting creased
- Take spare plastic bags to organise your dirty clothes
- Invest in a portable charger to charge up your camera/phone on long journeys.
- Swap books with other backpackers so you don’t have to carry more than one with you at any time. If that fails, you can usually buy cheap second hand books or exchange your book for another in book shops.
- Take and write a journal. You don’t have to write something every day but try and keep track of dates and places. In years to come, you’ll enjoy reading back over your trip and you’ll be glad you wrote down the name of that little Vietnamese village you visited and had forgotten the name of!
- Take a silk sleep sheet- They don’t take up much room and are a great alternative to sleeping bags on hot nights. They also keep the mozzie bites at bay!
- Pack a combination padlock for your backpack- it’s better to be safe than sorry!
- Take wet wipes with you for long journeys- you may be far from a shower- improvise!
- Toilet roll and hand sanitizer will be your saviour! Most toilets come equipped with a bidet spray (colloquially known as a ‘bum gun’) to clean yourself and toilet paper is not usually provided. Bring on the hand sanitizer!
- Take 2 memory cards for your camera- Alternate them so if one goes missing you won’t lose all of your amazing travel pics!
- Remember to pack a jumper or hoodie- Asia is humid and hot but air conditioning is used in lots of shopping centres/buses etc and evenings can be cool.
- Make the most of every moment!!!
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