Packing for any trip abroad is a chore and it is indeed a stressful part of your travel procedure. What if you forget something important like a passport? That will plainly be an incubus! Then again, you might end up taking far too much stuff and have to abandon half of it at the airport. What a scene you’d create! That will be an added stress.
The task gets even tougher if you are traveling to a big region with diversity like South America, where you will encounter most of the planet’s different types of climate. So what should you pack for a trip to South America?
Spot the clean and presentable look
A lot of travelers are surprised by how smart and presentable South Americans tend to be. Just about everyone seems to make a great effort to look as presentable as they can be. You won’t see too much overly formal clothing or outlandish cutting edge fashion in most parts of the continent. Instead, you will see that the most common type of look is a sort of clean-cut classic style. If you normally wear grungy clothes while traveling, then you might want to smarten up a bit for this trip, to avoid standing out too much.
Check Out the Climates
The climates are very diverse in this part of the world but thankfully the seasons are typically well defined. This means that if you do some online research you should find out fairly quickly whether it will be rainy or dry at that time of the year. Don’t assume that places close together are going to have similar climates, as they can vary widely over relatively short distances. This is important because it gives you an idea of what to pack in your bag.
Remember the Altitude
One of the big factors to take into account here is the altitude. Regions such as The Andes can see the altitude rise sharply over very little distance. As you get higher and the air gets thinner, the nights also tend to get colder. If you are planning on staying at a reasonably high altitude then you will need to take more warm clothes with you then you can imagine. The flip side of the coin is that high altitude places often have strong sun during the day, meaning that you need to pack sun cream as well. This is something that can be hard to find and expensive in many places.
Camping Gear and Mosquito Nets
I traveled around South America for a year with a mosquito net and a sleeping bag weighing me down. I didn’t use them even once. Most hotels, hostels and even jungle cabins will provide everything that you need for a sound night’s sleep. If you are planning on going on an organized trek such as the one to Machu Picchu, then expect all of the camping equipment to be supplied as well.
Buy While You Are There
It is reassuring to know that you don’t have to panic if you aren’t sure whether you are taking away everything that you need. In fact, buying what you need while there is a fantastic option. You will find that buying clothes in South America is interesting and usually good value as well. As with anywhere else in the world, buying locally can help you to blend in and can also give you some wonderful souvenirs to take home with you.
If you plan to visit South America, consider the above-mentioned tips to avoid any hassles and unnecessary stress. It is a good idea to blend in with the locals or in other words, not stand out too much as a tourist to stay safe.