Located in Southeast Asia, Vietnam is among the top attractive destinations with several beautiful landscapes, tasty street foods, and hospitable locals. When making a trip to Vietnam, there are some specific things you should bring along to have a better time in this wonderful country. Have a look at the following packing list.
1. Passport and Visa
Passport and visa are two essential things for all overseas trips. Ensure that your passport is valid for about six months beyond your planned stay. Some nationalities such as Australia and Canada are required to apply for a visa before coming to Vietnam. Tourist visas are often proper for those who are planning to stay in Vietnam for thirty to ninety days, and it can be extended after your arrival. A travel tip for you is to keep some photocopies of your passport and visa in case you lose your originals.
Read more on How to Obtain a Vietnam Visa.
2. Travel Insurance
Some people often underestimate the importance of travel insurance. However, you may find it helpful when you run into unforeseen travel misfortunes. For example, travel insurance could provide you with certain coverage of medical costs in case you get a traffic accident. Like a passport and visa, you are highly advised to keep some printouts with you.
Get a quote for your travel insurance plan
You should always ensure that your debit or credit cards will work in Vietnam before your arrival. In some cases, it is advisable to notify your bank the date you will arrive in Vietnam. Make sure to have money in cash because you are most likely to buy foods, drinks and other things in small shops where they cannot charge your card. However, places like shopping malls, clothing stores, and coffee chains accept payment with cards.
You could also bring some other kind of credit card as a backup, in which VISA and Mastercard are highly recommended since, like many other countries, these types of payment are accepted in Vietnam. A travel tip is to take pictures of both sides of your credit or debit cards to save the details of your cards and necessary contact information in case they get lost.
Read more on Vietnamese Currency.
4. Appropriate Luggage
There is a wide variety of luggage types to choose from for your Vietnam trip, ranging from suitcases to duffle bags. If you are planning to travel by bus and train between regions in Vietnam, soft shell bags or middle-sized bags are highly recommended since they can comfortably fit into the overhead compartments. You should also bring along your daypacks or backpacks which are suitable for day tours around cities. Those kinds of bags could make it possible for you to carry a bottle of water, some snacks, and other essentials. A Vietnam travel tip you should take notice of is to keep your important things in a safe place in case of thieves.
5. Travel Pillow
If you want to make several trips around Vietnam, you must need a travel pillow since it may take you a certain amount of time to spend on buses and trains. A high-quality travel pillow, in such cases, could become very helpful for your neck and shoulders on a long drive.
|To have fun trips in Ho Chi Minh City, check out our authentic motorbike tours with professional local guides!|
6. Appropriate Clothing
Vietnam has a distinctly tropical climate which is hot and humid all year round. Light package with many cotton and linen clothes, therefore, is highly advisable for you to travel around Vietnam. Also, t-shirts and shorts could be included on your packing checklist to help you stay cool. Denim and heavy fabrics should be avoided as they may cause you to be bathed in sweat, especially when you travel during the summertime.
However, the weather can be somewhat different among locations. It could be pretty cold from October to January in the North of Vietnam. If you are planning to visit this area, you should bring some sweaters and coats on your trip. Besides, a lightweight hoodie might be needed for your Vietnam trip, especially when you are supposed to spend hours sitting under air conditioning on buses or flights.
The type of clothing to bring to Vietnam sometimes considerably depends on what kind of attraction you prefer to visit. Although some Vietnamese temples and pagodas may provide travelers with proper clothes, those who enjoy visiting religious sites and places should bring their unrevealing clothing such as long skirts and trousers. In case you show a strong preference for sun-drenched beaches, swimwear including bikini and board shorts is undoubtedly crucial.
For more information on dressing attire, read our blog What to know about the Vietnamese Culture.
7. Comfortable Footwear
Since you may be expected to do many daily walks during your Vietnam traveling, lightweight walking shoes are often preferable for many foreign tourists to keep your feet well protected. A pair of flat sandals are also a good choice which should be added to your packing list, especially for a short-distance walk at night.
Standard shoes or boots, which are designed for heavy trekking, are unnecessary unless you are a professional trekker who enjoys traveling to remote mountainous regions. You might be racked with nagging pain when wearing such shoes on a daily basis during your Vietnam journey.
It is important to bring your own prescribed medicine since you may encounter difficulties in finding it in a strange country. As you are likely to run into many health problems ranging from headaches to allergies when traveling to a different country, a pack of regular medication must be extremely helpful in such cases. Many travelers seem to suffer from a severe headache because of the unfamiliar weather or the act of sitting hours on flights and trains. Painkillers such as aspirin and paracetamol, therefore, should be brought along when you come to Vietnam, making it possible for you to enjoy your trip thoroughly.
Furthermore, stomach medicine is essential when traveling to Vietnam since some Vietnamese street foods are a bit spicy which might do harm to your stomach if you are not accustomed to spicy dishes. Besides, you may suffer from traveler diarrhea resulting from consuming contaminated foods and drinks, so make sure to bring along medication for such cases.
Read more on Is it Safe to Drink Tap Water in Vietnam?
9. Hats and Sunglasses
Since sunlight in Vietnam may become quite harsh sometimes, especially during the time between 11 AM and 2 AM, hats and sunglasses could aid in protecting your eyes from UV radiation. Those things are increasingly essential if you are planning to spend your holiday basking in the glorious sunshine on the sunny beaches in Vietnam. What is more, the trendy hats and sunglasses can be artistic props for your Instagram beach post!
Read more on Top 7 Best Beaches in Vietnam.
As a Southeast Asian country, Vietnam is supposed to experience a high UV index, especially during the summertime from June to August. Your skin can be probably affected by the sunray even on a cloudy day. There are several types of sunscreen including lotions, creams, and gels which can offer you UV protection. Sunscreens with a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 30 are highly recommended for those planning to visit Vietnam during the summertime.
11. Insect Repellent
The tropical climate in Vietnam is considered a good environment for insects such as mosquitos to develop. It can become extremely unpleasant when getting bitten all the time, especially at around dawn and dusk and in the evening. Insect repellents are your savior on the Vietnam trip to rural areas. Also, wearing long trousers, skirts, and long-sleeved shirts to keep your skin covered is an advisable tip.
It could be beneficial sometimes to bring along some mini rolls of toilet paper when traveling to Vietnam. Although many hotels and restaurants are often equipped with toilet facilities, you may hardly find toilet paper in some bus stop bathrooms or camping areas. Besides, you should also bring a quick-dry towel so that you do not have to wait around for room service.
13. Electronics & Travel Adaptors
As plug shapes may vary in different countries, power adapters should always be included in your packaging checklist. Remember to bring your cell phone, camera, and other electronic devices with you since you might want to take a lot of photos and need something to entertain during long train or bus rides. Also, make sure all essential chargers and backup chargers needed for your electronic devices to be brought along. However, you should not bring many expensive items when traveling in case of thieves and unwanted damage.
14. Location Information
Before traveling to a region, you should look for and take note of the location information of that area, which involves the address and phone number of the hotel you plan to stay in, local maps and public transportation routes. Having a certain amount of knowledge of your destinations can always enable you to enjoy your Vietnam journey thoroughly.
Read more on Top 10 Places to Visit in Vietnam.
15. Earplugs and Sleep Mask
If you plan to travel to several places in Vietnam by night trains or buses, you may need earplugs and sleep masks to accompany your travel pillow and have a good sleep. Earplugs, in particular, are not common in Vietnam, so be sure to buy quality earplugs online before your travel.
Vietnam is a beautiful country to explore with several attractive destinations. Make sure to have a comprehensive packing list and keep some Vietnam travel tips when visiting this beautiful country.