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Gear and equipment forum

Rain in SE Asia in August

Posted by Sfnwonder on 13/5/2012 at 15:03

Hi. I am traveling though Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam end of July and August. Not ideal but that is the only time we can go. I have been told that we should expect lots of rain, landslides etc
What wet weather gea should I bring? 'breatheable' lightweight rain jacket?
Also...definitely want a rucksack or suitcase with wheels but was told not to bring a hard case but all the rucksacks with wheels are 4kg + and as budget airlines only allow 20kg that quite a chunk of weight allowance (we are going on to India after SE Asia). Does anyone know a lightweight wheeled rucksack that doesn't cost a massive amount?

#1 Sfnwonder has been a member since 11/5/2012. Posts: 1

Posted by busylizzy on 13/5/2012 at 15:27

Personally, I would tend to pack a small umbrella rather than a raincoat as even the breathable ones are pretty awful to wear in the humid heat (in my opinion). Having said that, I did wear one at times when motorbiking around southern Laos where it was a bit cooler at the time, so I was glad to be a bit drier than I would have been otherwise. But my pants were still soaking!

I like the umbrella idea as you can also use it for shade.

In terms of suitcase, etc - forget the idea of bringing anything with wheels! They are generally of no use when in Asia - the footpaths along the streets are so potholed, crowded with people either standing or sitting, motorbikes parked, etc that you will no be able to easily pull anything behind you.

There are generally few times that you really have to carry your luggage far. In/out of taxis/buses, in/out accom places (which are often up 2-3 flights of stairs - forget about elevators!) and maybe around the airport (andthey normally have trolleys).

A backpack is more practical option. Just get one that is not to big, and don't be tempted to overpack it. Make sure it fits comfortably, and that it has straps that go around your hips (to help carry the load).

I did consider a hybrid case a few years ago (ie a backpack with wheels) - but was very glad I didn't bother in the end. I would have rarely got use of the wheels, and the extra weight of the wheels wouldn't have been welcome.

Also - just because the airlines allow up to 20kg doesn't mean you have to bring that much. You should aim for 12-15kgs max - and maybe up to 18 by the time you load up with souvenirs on your way home.

Finally, most importantly, make sure you can padlock your bag shut, and that you bring a raincover if travelling in rainy season. Aside from protecting your bag from rain, it will also help keep it clean. Bus drivers don't think twice about dropping your bag in puddles or putting it on top of oil spills when they load it into the undercarriage.

#2 busylizzy has been a member since 31/12/2007. Location: New Zealand. Posts: 2,152
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