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Tips & Tricks For Your First Trip To Southeast Asia - Is this your first time traveling to Southeast Asia?! Then I have a few tips and tricks for you that I have learned in over 15 months. Don't worry, traveling in Southeast Asia is easy and even more so with these backpacking hacks.

Tips & Tricks For Your First Trip To Southeast Asia


All you need for Southeast Asia is your passport, international health insurance , two credit cards , some clothes and a one-way ticket. The rest will take care of itself along the way. A rough idea of ​​what you want to see is not wrong though.

Photograph all your travel documents and store them in the cloud together with your travel documents (insurance, flights, etc.) or send them to you by email. So you can fall back on it in case of theft.


Which vaccinations are recommended for your trip and do not wait until shortly before departure. Depending on what you want to be vaccinated against, you will need several injections. This is the only way to have long-lasting protection against diseases, so let your doctor draw up a vaccination plan for you. Find out about other diseases such as malaria & Co.


Do you have a passport? Good. How long is it still valid? It should be issued for at least six months longer than your planned trip, as many countries require this upon entry. How many free pages do you have? Plan about a page and a half for countries with visas and half a page for those without.


Find out about the entry requirements so that you don't experience any nasty surprises. Most of the time everything is uncomplicated. However, when you fly, the airline may require an onward or return ticket for some countries. If you don't, they won't let you on board.

In Southeast Asia, it's easy to lose track of time. It regularly happens that backpackers overstay their visas , which can be expensive. So keep an eye on it and extend your visa if you decide to stay. This often goes without a problem in the country.


Don't worry about the weather, you can't change it anyway. It's the tropics, even if it rains, it usually stops after a short time. I like to travel even during the rainy season . The air is clearer. Everything is greener. It's less crowded and prices are lower. And the sunsets are all the more dramatic because of the clouds.

Rather avoid the holidays around Christmas/New Year and the main holiday periods. Then it is full at popular bathing spots and the top attractions. Look for unusual corners in the high season.


It makes your life easier. You're more mobile and you really don't need a lot of stuff in the tropics. So ask yourself for each part whether you really need it. In an emergency, you can still buy stuff if you can't live without it while traveling.


As long as you're not planning jungle expeditions, you'll get by with a small first-aid kit. In Southeast Asia, you will find a pharmacy everywhere to buy things if you need them. You should definitely take a clinical thermometer with you, as it is difficult to tell if you have a fever in the heat. This is important to know because if you have it for more than a few days, you should definitely see a doctor.


  • Do not pack white or good clothes . They suffer in the laundry and quickly turn gray.
  •  Don't bring a travel adapter . Most accommodations in Southeast Asia have universal sockets that accept both Euro and US plugs. In Malaysia and partly in the Philippines you need one, but you can get one locally.
  • Buy your bug spray in Southeast Asia, they often work better. I have generally had good experiences with OFF and BIOZ Natural Insect Repellent Spray in Malaysia


Before we get started, I have a few tips:

  • Bring your international (grey) and national driver's license. The international one is only valid together. However, if you do not have a motorcycle license, you are not officially allowed to drive at all.
  • Document the condition of the bike with a few photos, especially the damage and the license plate.
  • Test the first few meters to see if everything works (ignition, brakes, lights, fuel gauge). You can still turn around.
  • Always wear a helmet.
  • Lock the handlebars in when you park the bike. The only exception is in a guarded parking lot, where the guards constantly rearrange the motorcycles to save space.
  • If you get a flat tire, ask the locals or look for a "Vulcanize" sign. In every village there is someone who can fix it for you quickly.
  • And this is how you can secure the helmet on the scooter.


Traveling is exhausting. You are always on the go. In addition, your body is not used to the heat and foreign bacteria in the tropics. So take care of yourself: get enough sleep, eat well and take breaks in between. And bring a warm sweater for night bus or train rides. With the cold air conditioning systems on board you will quickly catch a cold.


Check your temperature. In the heat, it's difficult to know when you have a fever . And you're probably more likely to get it here than at home. If it stays or several days, you should see a doctor, it could be something serious. 

If you have diarrhea , it helps not to eat anything for a while so that the intestines can fight the pathogen. An electrolyte solution such as Elotrans * helps to get back on your feet. You should only use Imodium acute in an emergency, as it paralyzes the intestines, even though they are trying to get rid of everything bad. 

Always carry some toilet paper in your day pack as you never know when the diarrhea will hit you.

Rudolfus Kikkert
Rudolfus Kikkert Interest In City Tourism

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