Let’s face it, one of the biggest problems going on holiday is knowing what to fit into the suitcase. Most of us try and get everything in. We think we are going to need far more than we do. We overpack, and sit on the suitcase to do it up. It’s only when we get the thing onto the travel scales that we realise. We are going to have to lose some items. This can be challenging if you’ve just been shopping and have brought an entirely new wardrobe. What though do we need?
It comes down to the destination
It might seem obvious to say it. The traveller going to Iceland is not going to pack the same as a traveller heading for the Greek Islands. Your needs in Machu Picchu are going to be different to those of Alaska. Heading for India, Africa or Asia? Get online and see that people are wearing. India travel forum is like having an ear to the ground. You could even ask other travelers.
Take the season into account. Conditions will change massively with the Monsoon. If you have never experienced life in a rainy season, then you are in for a shock. Bizarrely you may find that it is not cold at all. In temperate zones of the world and from Bali, the South Pacific and in Singapore and Malaysia, temperatures do not alter that much.
Versatility is the key to everything.
There are some competitive travel clothing shops now, and it’s easy to pick up bargains. Look for light and breathable clothing options that can double up. Trousers or Pants can easily become shorts. Light shirts can look formal but can be worn loosely over the ever versatile T-shirt. Board shorts are a must.
Have a think about your fleece and coat option. Don’t assume because you are going to a hot country that it will not be cool at night. Even India can be cold. It will depend on the altitude. You might find that you are hot at the base of a mountain and feel very different at the top. A good lightweight waterproof fleece jacket is a must. Look for options with secure pockets.
Think about your daily excursions. You might need to prepare for a morning on the beach and then wander into the old town.That same trip might lead to a cafe. So be prepared for all eventualities.
The Sensibilities of the Culture.
It can come as quite a shock to find that many women, in particular, cover up, even in the warmest climates of the world. You might find that what is suitable to the beach is not for the restaurant or cafe. Certainly many religious sites require a dress code. The trick is to have long pants, or leggings and a headscarf option. Adapting or even adopting a wrap can be a great idea. It can go over the shoulders in case of sunburn. It can go around the waist and make a skirt, and it can go onto the head for a covering. It can even double as a light towel in case of an emergency swim.
Wherever you are going footwear is going to be essential. You need to think, light, hardwearing and versatile. Anything that is considered fashionable is probably going to be a bad idea. An entire continent lives in jandals or flip-flops. They are confusingly called thongs in Australia. These are a cheap and colourful option. They may take some getting used to.
There are some great tough, lightweight walking shoes on the market. You might get away with trainers, or you could consider the much aligned but infinitely practical croc. These have come of age. What other piece of footwear could you wade through a river and have them good and dry in seconds?
So, choose your holiday wardrobe carefully and look for versatility in everything. Leave some space. You just might want to do some extra shopping while you are there!