Shannon Did What / Travel + Lifestyle Blog

Backpacking Thailand: What to Pack

TravelShannon GuerreroComment

Backpacking in Thailand, is definitely an experience.  In fact, it was my first experience with the backpacker lifestyle.  I quickly discovered what I actually needed and what I didn’t.  Trying to travel efficiently and with the least amount of weight is the goal.

In preparation for my trip, I was a little overwhelmed with what I should and shouldn’t bring.  After all, you have to carry your things around everywhere.  I thought I did pretty well - I wore literally everything once, maybe more and used most everything I brought along.

There were definitely some must-have items i found were lifesavers.  I actually felt like my packing and preparation kept me super prepared for all of my travel needs.



  1. Lock - This is a must have. You’re going to want to safely secure your items in the lockers at hostels. No one wants to come back to missing items. Take a light one, though - don’t get caught with extra weight.

  2. Foldable Day Pack - This came in super handy when i needed to carry around more items during the day that wouldn’t fit in my cross body bag. It folds down super small to pack easily in your backpack.

  3. Microfiber Towel - Especially when backpacking, you don’t want to lug around a large towel or worse be caught at your hostel using their “we’re not sure how clean these are” towels. This kind dries super fast and packs really small.

  4. Extra Cash - If you don’t want to worry about your credit/debit cards abroad, bring extra cash. It is way easier to quickly exchange to Thai Baht and a good number of places I went to didn’t accept cards.

  5. Downey Wrinkle Release -Guaranteed, you’re clothes will be wrinkled from being squished in your backpack. This stuff works miracles.

  6. Scarf/Sarong - Girls, if you don’t have one, pick one up when you get there. They are super cheap. I carried one around daily and it came in so handy for those times you need to cover up your knees or shoulders in the temples or even as a blanket in those overly-blasted ac areas.

  7. Packing Cubes - As an super organized person, packing a backpack with all of my things made me a little anxious. These cubes kept everything so organized, allowed me to consolidate and made it extremely easy to find what I was looking for. No more digging around blindly inside your backpack.

  8. Bug Spray - In Thailand, no one is immune. Bring bug spray with deet. You still may get bit but it’s way better than going without it.


There were also items I brought along that turned out to be added weight.  These are the things you don’t need to bring:

  • Electrical Adapters: Literally everywhere I stayed and went had universal sockets, including the airplanes I traveled on.

  • Mini Surge Protector: I always carry a mini surge protector with me so that I only have to use one adapter and then I am able to charge all of my electronics at once. Not necessary and just added weight.

  • Jeans: Especially if you're going during the hot seasons, jeans are bulky and take up a ton of space.

  • Bulky jackets: Like jeans, you may not even end up needing to wear it.

  • Reusable Water Bottle: You’ll just end up purchasing water bottles, so this just takes up valuable space.

I’m so glad I was able to try out backpacking.  Not sure its the type of travel I prefer, but it was an amazing experience none-the-less. Maybe I’d take a rolling suitcase next time because a heavy backpack makes you way more exhausted, especially if you take unnecessary heavy items.

Yours Truly // Shannon