What to pack for Vietnam ?

It is hot in most Vietnam (see temperatures in the city of Saigon). If you go to places with mountains like Sapa in the north, it will be much cooler.
Simple textiles, like T-Shirts can be bought at low prices in the different markets. In the big cities like Saigon and Hanoi there are modern shopping malls in which you can find international fashion chains like Pull and Bear and Zara, prices are about the same as in Europe. Visit the page about the shopping in Saigon.
You may want to be equipped with the following items, for your trip to Vietnam :

Hidden Pocket to carry the cash

Nowadays, a credit card is the main way of payment and you should have one (or more) when you travel abroad. Still, you may also want to have cash on you, as a backup.

This product is very useful and important during a trip. There are 2 versions : one is vertical and is hanged on your belt by two loops and the other one is horizontal and doesn’t requires a belt.

The pocket is kept inside the trousers, so nobody sees it and it is very comfortable because one side is made with a soft tissue. You can also put your passport inside.

Universal Plug Adapter

In most hotels, there will be sockets that are suitable for international travelers, but you cannot count on it. You may also want to use sockets in cafés and at the airport. If you move between many countries, you should definitely be equipped with a universal plug adapter. Keep in mind that the universal plug adapter doesn’t convert voltages so make sure your electronics devices are adapted to 220 volts and also 110 volts (nowadays, they do).

Luggage Tags

I have 3 tags on my suitcase. It is a question of statistics, some of the suitcases are not reaching their destinations and some of the bags are lost.

If you want to improve the chances of getting your suitcase, put a tag with your name and your address (at least 2 tags).

Small Padlock for the suitcase

I’m pretty sure that it won’t stop a very determined thief, but it may help in some cases. Of course that the ones with a combination number lock are easier to use than the ones with a key.

You may need a padlock also for a situation in which you leave your bag for storage (in a hotel) or you go to the gym, swimming-pool etc.

Microfiber Lightweight Towel

Even if you stay at top hotels, you should have one of these towels that dries very quickly and almost doesn’t weight and is not voluminous. I take it to the swimming pool, for example. It should also have a small loop to hang it in the bathroom.


I began to use earplugs in trips, relatively late in my life. I wish I would have used them before because it would have saved me some arguments and unnecessary changes of rooms and hotels. Sleeping during a trip will never be like sleeping at home. Some hotels will be noisy because of street noise or internal sources like an air-condition or just people who make noise in the corridor. Practice at home how to insert them correctly, before the trip.

Small Travel Alarm Clock

You may think that you don’t need one because you already have this function in your Smartphone. Well, you are lucky, you are a very relaxed person.

When I’m traveling and I have to wake up at night for a flight, I cannot trust my smartphone because something may go wrong with the configuration and I will miss the flight, I also don’t want to trust the reception of the hotel to wake me up. I carry with me two (yes, 2) small alarm clocks.
The analog clocks may do a light “tick tick” sound, the digital ones, no.

Travel Guide – book

Getting information from the internet is fine, but I usually prefer to have with me also a Lonely Planet guide (in form of a book). These guides describe in a user friendly way the points of interest and how to get there. There is usually also some history to read, so it keeps you busy during the coffee breaks.


You should definitely have a pair of good earphones during a trip.  Nowadays most of the earphones are wireless. Note : If you choose a wired earphone, you may need an adapter to your smartphone. The function of “active noise cancelation” may be useful while in the transports.

Sleeping Bag Liner (sheet)

I don’t carry a real sleeping bag with me when I travel but I do carry this type of light sheet for any case. It is useful for cases when you travel on trains or you are staying in cheap hotels and you are not sure about the cleanness of the blankets. You can then protect yourself with this personal sleeping bag liner. It is very light and not voluminous so there’s no problem to put it in the suitcase. From my experience, I prefer a sleeping bag in rectangular form and not the “mummy” ones.

Toiletry Bag (with hanging handle)

If you travel you need one like this. It has several compartments and a loop in order to hang it in the bathroom.

Lightweight Luggage Organizers

You will have a lot of small items in your suitcase, like electric cables, socks etc. One option is to put them in whatever you have at home (plastic bags), but a better solution is to organise them in these compact bags.

Travel Pillow (for flights…)

I usually don’t carry with me this item because it takes place in the suitcase (when it is not an inflatable one), but I saw tourists carrying it hanged outside their backpack. It is a very popular product.

Also kids like it


Every traveller needs a backpack. Note that there are backpacks that are more suitable for carrying a Laptop, they have a specialised cushioned compartment inside.

The backpacks of Lowe Alpine and the backpacks of The North Face are very popular. They are also very comfortable for the back.

The Anti-mosquitoes

To protect yourself from mosquitoes during a trip there are several solutions :

  1. Spray on skin – Not very pleasant in my opinion, but some say that it is better than being bitten by mosquitoes.
  2. Bracelet repellent.
  3. Mosquito net in form of a tent: The best solution if you can afford to carry it with you. There is no need to hang it over the bed. It is foldable, weighs about 2 pounds (1 kilo) and it enters a normal suitcase (but probably not a backpack).
  4. Mosquito net to hang: Much more compact than the mosquito tent, but you have to hang it somewhere and it’s not always easy to find hanging points in a hotel room.
  5. Ultrasonic Deterrent.

Sun protection lotion

This kind of product (the known international brands) may be expensive once you are in place (for example in the beach), so bring it with you.

Electric Shaver for Men

You may want to replace the head of your electric shaver (it need to be done every 2 years or so) or you may want a totally new shaver for your trip. There are shavers which are more lightweight than others.

I have prepared a page in which I explain the different options available, for different budgets.
Or see directly electric shavers on Amazon :

More on Vietnam :

  On Thailand :

Other Stuff :

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