Southeast Asia forum

Staying Dry- Rain Jacket? Poncho?

  • AdamZee

    Joined Travelfish
    12th January, 2010
    Posts: 6

    I am having the hardest time deciding what would be the best option as far as staying dry in the rain. I prefer jackets over ponchos but I am worried about the heat and "muggyness" while in eastern thailand, cambodia, and vietnam during the end of June through to August.
    I want to get opinions since I am having trouble finding what everyone likes. I have seen a couple rain shells from REI and Arcteryx, one Gore-tex and the eVent waterproof liners. Just not sure if it is worth 200-300 bucks just to sweat to death in them. I'm also curious if I should buy this in Asia when I get there.
    Thanks for all your help!

    #1 Posted: 16/5/2010 - 02:09

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  • busylizzy

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

    Are you doing any serious trekking?

    If not, I would tend to not bother with a jacket. I carried a very cheap and nasty plastic poncho that folded up into a tiny pouch. I only used in once; the rest of the time when it rained I just sheltered under a roof, in a restaurant or wherever.

    I also had a small, lightweight umbrella - but only used it once or twice. And I used it more often to keep the sun off of me then the rain!

    Personally, I couldn't stand the thought of wearing any sort of raincoat over there - even with air ventilation bits in them. Get a cheap poncho to carry 'just in case'. And you can buy those cheaply over there. And look at getting a cover for your pack. I would be more concerned about keeping my stuff dry than me!

    #2 Posted: 16/5/2010 - 03:56

  • Archmichael

    Joined Travelfish
    23rd July, 2008
    Location Global Village
    Posts: 396
    Total reviews: 2

    Yeah, don't buy a rainjacket to take. Spend the $200-300 on extra days in SE Asia. A very small umbrella can be handy. A cheap poncho can be had there, if needed. As Busylizzy said, a rain cover for your pack is more essential than a plastic coat for you. Unless you like saunas, I suppose. ;)

    #3 Posted: 16/5/2010 - 08:01

  • CunningMcFar

    Joined Travelfish
    20th August, 2004
    Posts: 163
    Total reviews: 45
    Places visited:
    At least 49

    we carry ponchos--cheap, convenient, and easily packable. Found good ones here at home in an outdoor store, large enough to fit over backpacks, under $20. Came in very handy on an Oct Cambodia trip, used many times.

    #4 Posted: 16/5/2010 - 23:32


    Joined Travelfish
    6th June, 2009
    Posts: 6953
    Total reviews: 10

    Stay under cover when it rains hard... I would say that's by far the prefered course of action. I live here and I don't use rain gear. Last time I tried I got soaked anyway.

    #5 Posted: 17/5/2010 - 01:18

  • AdamZee

    Joined Travelfish
    12th January, 2010
    Posts: 6

    Awesome, thank you for all the help and quick responses. This is almost what I predicted but I am glad I got some definitive answers. I think I'll try to take shelter and if not possible pull out a cheap poncho.

    #6 Posted: 17/5/2010 - 03:51

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