After finishing the first year of grad school, I had about 3 weeks until my summer internship began. A buddy and I decided that this would be the perfect time to explore Southeast Asia. You can read more about how we planned the trip here. Packing for this trip was pretty easy and took an hour tops. Here’s what I packed to survive in SEA:
Summer Southeast Asia Packing List
- Suitcase (since I was going straight to Florida for my internship after this trip, I chose to bring a suitcase because it had more room, otherwise I would’ve brought the backpacking backpack featured in this post)
- Medicine (Tums, Advil, etc.)
- Toiletries like shampoo and conditioner
- Makeup and makeup remover (honestly though, it was so hot that I went makeup free most days to prevent it from melting off my face)
- Hand sanitizer
- Phone + charger
- Universal charger like the one pictured here (worked in all of SEA and less than $7!)
- Toothbrush + charger
- Visa approval letter for Vietnam – got our online visas through this website
- 2 passport size pics for the Vietnam visa (I tried to use images I printed myself and they didn’t accept them..learn from my mistakes and make sure you bring professional passport pics, it’ll save you time and money).
- 4 tanks
- 4 pairs of shorts
- 2 skirts
- 1 pair of leggings (used purely for flights, otherwise it is way too hot)
- 3 bras
- 7 pairs of undies
- 7 pairs of socks
- 1 bathing suit
- Day backpack (useful when you’re walking all day or temple hopping)
- 1 pair of cotton pants (you can also substitute this for a long skirt if you plan on visiting temples)
- 1 pair of sandals
- 1 pair of sneakers
- Most of the temples you visit in Cambodia and Thailand require respectful dressing so ladies, sadly this means no shorts. At some super strict temples, this means no pants either, it must be a long skirt. You can usually rent or buy a sarong at or near the popular temples in Thailand and Cambodia. If you want to go prepared though, make sure you pack a long skirt!
- Even though the items above might sound like a lot, most of the items are pretty small and can easily be compressed. The friend that I went with was able to fit all that plus all the gifts she got into one backpacking backpack. The great thing about traveling in the summer is that you won’t need heavy jackets or boots, which will give you way more room to pack.
What’s that one thing you never travel without? Share in the comments below!
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