Thailand packing list: What you NEED to bring

You’re flying to thailand soon, but don’t know what to pack? Don’t worry, here is my FULL guide on what you NEED to pack (in 2023). 

Here are some of the most important items and in the end you’ll find a full packing check list to download/print. 

1. Sun screen

The sun in Thailand is EXTREMLEY strong and sunscreen there might be expensive. So make sure you bring enough sunscreen with you. I have the one linked here, but you can get them everywhere of course.

2. insect repellent

This might be a bit more expensive than a normal one, but it is really important. As soon as I walked out of the airport the mosquitos tried to eat me alive. Some of the mosquitos can give you dengue fever, so please make sure to be aware of it. But don’t worry one mosquito spray is enough. You just need it in the beginning then you can buy it new when you are there at every 7-eleven shop. 

Here is the link to the one I brought. It is not the cheapest, but in my experience, worth the money!

3. A silk scarf/thin towel

I brought three thin silk scarfs with me and it was the best decision ever. Why? Because they don’t take any space in your lagguage and they are very multifunctional. Sooner or later you’ll visit temples in Thailand. out of respect you need to cover your shoulders, so if you’re wearing a top or t-shirt you can just put the scarf over yourself. Or you can wear it as a headband nice skirt or a top. Fact is you can do a lot with a silk towel like that. 

4. Thin, long pants

I would recommend you to not bring too many clothes. You’ll find amazing clothes on every corner of Thailand and they won’t be expensive at all! But you should bring a thin, bright pair of pants. Why? You won’t be sweating in them or get sunburned and the mosquitos won’t eat you alive as well. (They like black, so that’s why you should choose them in a bright color like this. 

5. A padlock

This is for people who plan on staying at hostels. All of the hostels I visited expected me to bring your own padlock for their lockers. This one is a very good, affordable one that is flexible, which means it will match for all types of lockers. 

6. A travel journal

This is not something you NEED. But I created this light travel journal myself and it helps you to plan your trip and is always fun to fill out in the evening. In the end you will have all your favorite memories collected.

7. An underwater camera

Sooner or later you’ll find yourself attending a boat tour where you’ll be able to jump in the water and snorkel. You’ll see amazing fishes, so if you want to capture these moments, but you don’t want to spend money on a GoPro, this camera is a great alternative.

8. A microfiber towel

The advantage of a microfibre towel is that it’s not only very small when it´s folded, but it also dries way faster than a normal towel. This one is available with different prints and a nice beach towel. 

9. First aid kit

A small first aid kit is always important to carry with you. 

10. Coal tablets

Stomach problems are a very common illness people get when they are travelling to Thailand. The food is very different and not everyone will take it perfectly in the beginning. These pills will help you immediately (even Thai people recommended them to me). But don’t worry to much about medicine in general. Every supermarket sells medicine and you’ll be able to find what you need. Take some painkillers, the coal tablet, the first aid kit and if you need something personally and you’ll be fine!

11. A sun hat

…A must have!

12. Beach shoes

Take beach shoes with you in which you can actually walk with our being in pain! I like these. 

13. A very thin rain coat

Rain can surprise you anytime. Make sure to have a thin raincoat that doesn’t take space.

14. A money fanny pack

This is probably the most important item. You will need to carry a lot of cash with you, so this belt is perfect. I take it on every trip and it makes me feel safe. I carry my passport, my money and my bank card in there. It is very thin so you can also hide it under your shirt and you do not have to be scared that someone steals anything from you.

15. A dry bag (waterproof)

I bought my dry bag in thailand, because I didn’t think of it before. But it was a very good perchuase. So much water gets in the boats and we were really happy to have our phones, fanny packs (wallet) and camera inside this bag. When it’s folded it doesn’t take any space. When you close this bag, it fills with vacuum and so it’s not only waterproof but it would also float on the water.

 You can either buy it there or here on Amazon. I have the 10 Liters one, which is enough for phones, my big camera, wallets and something else. 

16. Floatable neck pillow

If you are having a long trip ahead of you. take this neck pillow. It’s cheap and really nice. 

17. Earplugs and sleeping mask

In case you stay at hostels or you are planning on taking night trains or else. Earlugs and a good sleeping mask will help you to sleep good! This one is so comfortable!

18. A big power bank

Take a BIG POWERBANK with you. it is worth the money and you will not regret buying it. 

19. A universal adapter

Last but not least, keep in mind that Thailand has a different socket, which means you will need to bring an adapter if you want to connect your devices. We bought this one and are very happy with it, since we have more than just one device to charge.


I took these hooks with me and it’s probably one of the things I used the most on my trip. Why? Whenever I went out with a bag, I needed a second pair of shoes (like beach shoes) and I could simply hang them outside the bag. After you went swimming, you can hang your swim clothes outside the bag, so they will dry fast! 

There are so many more situations where this hook can help you!

packing list von Malina Riefke

Screenshot/ print your full packing check list for FREE here!


What I packed for Thailand backpacking

♬ Brazil - Declan McKenna

NOTE: I might get a small commission with purchases made over my links with no price changes to you. Nevertheless I only recommend things I really use and like 🙂

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