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Travel Packing Guide for Southeast Asia – Part 2: Things to Leave at Home

In the FIRST PART - Travel Packing Guide for Southeast Asia - Part 1: What to Pack, we gave you a list of the top 10 things to pack for your trip to Southeast Asia. This week, we will continue with another top 10 list, this time of things that would be better left at home.

1. Too many clothes

This is the main reason for overpacking as clothes accounts for a large proportion of space in your suitcase. Most of us tend to bring as many clothes as possible, just for precaution. But I’m sure that they will not use all of their shirts, shorts, dresses, jumpsuits, coats, sweater, and pants when they return. You have to study your destinations in terms of its climate at the time you’ll be staying in advance. Then pick which kinds of clothes you should pack and choose a sufficient number of them. For instance, who needs coats when you’re heading for the exotic beaches in Thailand?

packing for a trip

Clothes contribute the most to "overpacking" - source: pinterest 

2. Valuable jewelries

Some countries in Asia are notorious for jewelry robbery, especially necklaces. If you need them for your wedding trip or business trip, do not include them in checked luggage. Then when you arrive at the hotel, put them in a safe or have the receptionists keep them for you. Also don’t wear them all day while wandering across the town.

3. Hairdryer

Considering its size and weight, as well as the fact that most hotels and cruises do provide it as their basic in room amenity, your hairdryer should be left at home. It’s not the end of the world if you don’t use it for a month. Travel is about discovering and experiencing the beauty of the world, not worrying about the beauty of your hair all the time. Now, think about what you can bring in place of the hairdryer!

4. Toiletries

guide for southeast asia

These kinds of beauty items can evoke some debates. But unless you’re staying at a hostel, they are unnecessary. Your hotel will surely provide you with complimentary shampoo, body lotion, and hair conditioner. However, if you fancy your favorite brand, make sure that they will be allowed to be carried on the plane by bringing a proper size container.

5. More than two pairs of shoes

For girls, footwear should be limited to dress shoes and casual shoes or dress shoes and sandals. For guys, casual shoes and sandals are just enough. There’s no point of bringing more than one of these items. High heels should also be left at home unless you’re going to an important and formal event.

6. All of your tech gadgets

Most of people today own more tech gadgets than just one smartphone. Consider the purpose of your trip and imagine what you’ll do throughout it, then choose only your necessary gadgets. For instance, if you do not need to work when traveling, exclude the laptop from your packing list. Your tablet can be a perfect replacement. All of your important files can be saved on the clouds so you can easily access them on any smart mobile devices. And your photos can also be transferred to your tablet so you can edit and post it with your apps.

guide for southeast asia

You won't need them all 

7. More than one guidebook

Guidebooks are essential, there’s no doubt about that. But should you bring more than one of them? No. Pick your most informative guidebook, preferably the one from Lonely Planet. And if you think a piece of content in another guidebook may still be useful for you, make a copy of it. Besides, most guidebook publishers today allow reader to download the PDF version so you can read it on your tablet. And if you’re familiar with travel recommendation apps such as Google Maps, TripAdvisor or Bing Travel and you’re traveling to modern cities such as Hong Kong, Singapore, Tokyo or Bangkok, your guidebook may even be superfluous after all.

8. Bottle of water

Although tap water is not safe in most parts of Southeast Asia, inexpensive bottles of water are widely available and can be easily bought. You can help cutting down on the region's terrible plasitc problem by purchasing large water bottles at the destination and refill after use. That's how easy you can travel responsibly.

9. Guitar

Unless you are Bruno Mars, a guitar can be a heavy addition to your travel packing list. However, if you can’t seem to live without playing music, a small ukulele can be a great substitute.

10. Umbrella

guide for southeast asia

A very unwise choice actually, but many of us still bring their own vivid umbrella. Getting wet a little bit from a tropical rain will not kill you. Consider a raincoat instead as it is far lighter and smaller. Besides, most hotels today do allow you to borrow their umbrellas.

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