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Laundry in SE Asia

  • Mexicano31

    Joined Travelfish
    8th April, 2010
    Posts: 27

    Hello everyone,

    Just wondering how do travellers do their laundry in SEA.
    I heard about an interesing idea which was to use a big strong bag (like the kind called dry bags) and shove the clothes, water and soap... then shake for a while and after that just rinse with water. That would be like a human washing machine haha.

    Anyway, how do people do theirs now? are there laundries all over(thailand, vietnam, laos, cambodia, indonesia, malaysia)? do everyone wash clothes manually?


    #1 Posted: 11/7/2010 - 03:04

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  • busylizzy

    Joined Travelfish
    31st December, 2007
    Location New Zealand
    Posts: 2155
    Total reviews: 20
    Places visited:
    At least 107

    I did exactly that - use a dry bag. Worked perfectly although my dry bag was starting to de-laminate after 5 months.

    You will usually find Laundry places widely available. Sometimes they do it by hand, and sometimes they have machines. Sometimes it's very cheap (I was paying $1 for a full load in Bali) and other times it would be 'expensive' (ie $3-4 a load). Some places charge by the kilo, other places just look at your bag of washing and give you cost.

    I usually used the dry bag then every 2-3 weeks I would get it put through a washing machine. It's especially nice when they use copious quantities of fabric softener - your laundry smells so nice for awhile! :-)

    #2 Posted: 11/7/2010 - 04:25

  • somsai

    Joined Travelfish
    1st March, 2006
    Location United States
    Posts: 567

    I like all my clothes to be clean every day, but don't like to carry much. Every day during my evening shower I wash my clothes and hang them on hangers to dry. Usually the ceiling fan has done it's work by morning. I've learned to bring lighter weight stuff.

    With nightly washing the chore isn't burdensome, I save money, always have clean clothes, and am never waiting for laundry. Wife taught me.

    #3 Posted: 11/7/2010 - 10:13

  • exacto

    Joined Travelfish
    12th February, 2006
    Location United States
    Posts: 2578
    Total reviews: 47
    Places visited:
    At least 98

    i've done my share of rinsing and washing in the sink or shower too. but typically while i'm on holiday in SEA about every three days or so i take it to a laundry and have it done. the cost isn't all that much, and the laundry is usually done by the next morning if not by that evening.

    #4 Posted: 11/7/2010 - 10:30

  • noflyzone

    Joined Travelfish
    9th June, 2010
    Posts: 11

    Be aware that laundry here is not usually up to the standards found in most folks' homes. After Cambodian red dust hit us it was really noticable how poor the washing is - buy some Vanish or similiar and do it yourself for stain removal. Local laundry works only for basic cleaning...and it's very very cheap.

    #5 Posted: 11/7/2010 - 19:10

  • neosho

    Joined Travelfish
    13th August, 2008
    Posts: 386

    Laundrys all over Thailand. Usually 25 to 30 baht per kilo. Sometimes your guesthouse will do it , though usually more expensive. Hotels will provide some service but be prepared to pay a lot more.

    #6 Posted: 12/7/2010 - 01:41

  • SBE

    Click here to learn more about SBE
    Joined Travelfish
    14th April, 2008
    Location Global Village
    Posts: 1999
    Total reviews: 5
    Places visited:
    At least 2

    Depends where you go really. If you're on a beach it's easy to dry clothes quickly. If you're in a town it isn't.

    I find a dry bag very very useful... you can wash clothes in it and also carry damp clothes in it. (Who hasn't travelled with damp towels in their backpack). Some places don't have sinks or the sinks don't have plugs so a dry bag is useful in those situations. Drybags also waste less water if you're somewhere where the water supply is limited... you can flush the loo with the water afterwards.

    #7 Posted: 12/7/2010 - 03:56

  • JourneymanT-

    Joined Travelfish
    28th June, 2010
    Posts: 24

    I agree with everything said - have a drybag or three (Exped do the best ones around and you get what you pay for, especially if you're going to be washing in them) which also has the advantage of segragating your kit and meaning you do not need a rucksack cover to protect your kit (although carrying a wet rucksack in the rain means you're carrying another 1-2kg so it's worth thinking about in the monsoon season). Washing in a drybag is easy and works well. Given the usual heat, even in towns, drying is a matter of hours. Laundry can be done all over SEA but, as noflyzone says, the quality varies markedly. Personally, if you like to stop off at a decent hotel once in a while during a long trip, I'd do my laundry then rather than cheap hostels. I respect somsai, though - not sure I'd have the energy to wash every evening...

    #8 Posted: 25/7/2010 - 21:45

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