Clothing and Footwear
Essential clothing and Footwear
Clothes may be light but they may also be bulky. It is advisable to take a minimum. You will need no more than two T-shirts and if you can find moisture wicking special fabric that is good. Typically depending on where you're going, you will probably going to sweat a lot. You will need one item with long sleeves. Pockets are always a very helpful addition, especially ones that are secure. Long sleeves are important for sun and insect protection. Long sleeve shirts are always advisable for most parts of the developing world.
For all climates no matter where you heading pack a light weight or an ultra light down jacket. It can always get chilly even on airplanes or any air-conditioned bus or train. Depending on where you're going a thin water/wind resistant jacket can compress and helps for all climates. A thin water/wind resistant jacket can also compress and one can wear a fleece underneath. Gore Tex is a highly recommended jacket. Don't forget a hat.
Two pairs of trousers that are quick drying should also be included. Do yourself a favor and leave the jeans at home. In climates over 25°C they are not the best and heavy to lug around and difficult to wash and dry. Chinos and cargo pants or simple cotton are better options. Convertibles are a popular choice.
Wraparound or long skirts are great for females who may not want any undue attention. Packing a cardigan to cover your shoulders is also important in certain countries. Leggings provide a lightweight and fast drying alternative to jeans for women. If you wear shorts you will pretty much stick out as a tourist.
When it comes to swimsuits the rule of thumb is wear a bathing suit that you would feel comfortable and at home in front of your parents. Make sure you have a cover-up.
When it comes to underwear take only a few pairs and wash them. Trying to avoid white is also a wise choice. When it comes to socks it depends on how many pairs of shoes you will be taking and the climate and how often you will wash them. 3 to 6 pairs a good basic rule of thumb. The bottom line is to bring clothes you are comfortable in and you like. Try to avoid taking anything white. Make them lightweight and practical.
The best recommendation for footwear is to always take only one pair and a light compact second option in your bag. You may need a highly specialized purpose pair and that would depend on your trip. Pick one pair of sandals to give your feet a break. Teva is a cheap lightweight brand we recommend. You can also choose heavily vented shoes designed for water use or minimalistic barefoot running shoes. Low cut light running shoes are perfect for travel. Just make sure all shoes are broken in. The best place to pack shoes is on your feet.