So you’re travelling to Southeast Asia soon? What should you bring to visit the glorious white beaches of Thailand or the majestic Angkor temples of Cambodia? What to pack for trekking in northern Vietnam or gliding down a river in Laos?
These are the top 10 things to pack for your trip once you’ve got your basics down (like travel documents and your wardrobe!)
1) A theft-proof bag or travel safe.
For small items you can buy excellent money pouches to wear under your clothes. For longer trips or larger items a travel safe or anti-theft back pack will give you peace of mind. Pacsafe have reliable and affordable options that we highly recommend.
2) A universal adapter
For an avid traveller, this is a savvy investment. This handy tool will allow you to convert any plug or voltage. We recommend one with USB ports for additional devices.
Most drugs can be purchased over the counter in South East Asia, but Malarone is increasingly difficult to find without a prescription and a hospital visit, so if required bring it with you.
Related Article: Southeast Asia weather guide
Bring a variety of different sized padlocks for locking up bags & cases, securing luggage, and locking the door on your beach bungalow.
5) Hand sanitiser
There’s nothing worse than getting ill on holiday! Pack a few hand sanitisers to live in your bag for when you need them.
6) A sarong/shoulder cover
Most temples and historical sites around South East Asia require shoulders and knees be covered. For a more versatile wardrobe, bring a sarong that you can throw on.
7) Travel towel
Microfibre towels take up almost no space in your case, and dry far quicker than regular towels. For beach days and impromptu waterfalls, pack one in your case.
Related Article: How to get around Thailand: Ultimate transport guide
8) Spare batteries
There are so many magical things to capture on your travels, you don’t want to be limited by your camera life. Always carry a spare (charged) battery so you don’t miss out on those photo-perfect moments that seem to come along as soon as your camera dies!
9) Shoes that slip on/off
Many temples, shops, guesthouses, bars and restaurants ask you to leave your shoes at the door. This can become a pain with laces and buckles! Pack comfortable, easily removable footwear.
Most toiletries can be bought inexpensively in South East Asia apart from the following exceptions:
- High quality sunscreen is expensive and can be compromised by the hot conditions its stored in.
- Deodorant frequently contains whitening solution in Asia. Bring a supply just in case.
- Moisturiser (face & body) also usually contains varying amounts of whiteners which bleach the skin, so bring a supply with you. Nivea Creme is particularly useful for sunburned skin.
And what should you leave at home?
- Don’t overpack on clothes – there are so many great places to buy clothing and quick & reasonably priced laundry services are available everywhere.
- Flip flops and sunglasses – you will regret bringing too many from home with all the options available to buy.
- Tiger balm, bug spray – these are very cheap and available everywhere, so no need to waste your weight allowance on them.
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Have any other tips or packing hacks? Let us know in the comments!