I often get asked what kind of clothes to should pack for a trip overseas (for a detailed list, click here). However, it can be quite hard to know what to take with you especially when you’re limited on space and weight – so how can you travel light without compromising on fashion?
Here’s list of the essential pieces of clothing to keep you looking on trend as well as cool and calm in the heat.
A Good Pair of Shorts
My Levi shorts are by far my best travel companion when backpacking – I don’t think I’ve ever been on a trip without them! They end up being practically sewn in to my legs as I wear them during the day or and on nights out. I find them so versatile as they go with practically anything and can be dressed up or down. I pair mine with a chunky black vintage belt and a floral crop.
Tip: Don’t spend a fortune buying them in overpriced shops, make your own out of some old cheap jeans or wait till you get overseas and buy some there (I bagged myself 2 pairs on Koh Phanghan in Thailand for next to nothing!)
Photo: Urban Outfitters
A Nice Dress or Skirt
Depending on the length of your trip, take at least one or two ‘nice’ outfits such as dresses or skirts. Like me, you might do a mix of hostels and the occasional 5* resort when you travel, so you’ll want to scrub up and wear something a bit nicer when you’re staying in more pricier places. You definitely don’t want to be taking anything super expensive however, as you can’t guarantee the local laundry place will wash them with care or that all of your clothes will return! I’m loving floral midi dresses at the moment teamed with my black Doc Marten sandals.
Tip: Instead of wasting time searching different sites, use shopping search engines like Shopstyle, Polyvore and Lyst.com.au to search through some of the best retailers like Forever 21, ASOS and Missguided all in one go! They have collated all the best summer dresses under $50 in one place here.
Cami Tops or Vests
In hot countries, wearing t-shirts during the day is just a no-go. It’s far too hot and the last thing you want is to be uncomfortable on a 4 hour bus journey. I always recommend taking 3-4 strappy tops to mix and match with shorts and skirts during the day or in the evening. Cotton tops are ideal as they are the most breathable in the humid weather, however you also want to consider materials that dry quick and don’t crease easily.
Tip: Choose black, grey or dark colours – white will stain easy and it will be hard to remove.
A pair of these pants will be one of your most prized possessions while travelling. They’re perfect for the heat and for keeping mosquitos at bay – they also allow you fully embrace the carefree traveller fashion. I love wearing my Sri Lankan pair with a crochet bralette that I picked up in Bali or these Topshop palazzo pants I got in the sale a few years ago!
Tip: If you don’t have a pair lying around, wait until you arrive at your destination to buy some – you can pick the cliché elephant print hareem pants pretty much anywhere in Asia for a fraction of what you would pay at home!
Photo: My beloved Topshop palazzo pants and I in Sri Lanka last year.
A must have for Asian countries! This versatile piece of clothing can be used when visiting religious temples and churches as you must cover your body as a sign of respect. The best thing is however, this can double up as a sarong at the pool, a towel for the beach or even a curtain on your bunkbed in a hostel! I have a beautiful black and white Pashmina from Dubai that I use all the time on my travels.
Photo: Ubud temples, Bali
What you take really depends on your destination and the length of your trip, please get in touch below if you’d like more advice.