Should I be using a credit card as much as possible? They haven't steered me wrong so far! I use a combination of Skyscanner and Google Flights to track down the cheapest/best flight options.
I actually prefer rainy season in many ways — temperatures are a little cooler, there are few fewer other tourists, and unless you're unlucky, you'll typically only get rain for a few hours in the afternoon/evening. It will be rainy season in many parts of SE Asia at that time, but unless you were planning to lie on the beach all day, it's unlikely to affect your trip too much. Check out the suggested itineraries on Travelfish — they're a great starting point.
In terms of must-see destinations, it depends so much on what you're into. Check out Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur, and Singapore, perhaps Hong Kong as well, for cheap flights from wherever you're starting from, then see how much the outbound flight to your next likely destination is going to be. Since internal flights are usually pretty cheap within SE Asia, any hub airport is fine to fly into.
So ideally, from SG > KL > Penang > Bangkok > Chiang Mai > Laos > Hanoi > SG. I know this sounds a little too ambitious, but is just a very rough outline of what I have in mind. I am trying to travel only by bus or train. I am planning to indochina travel blog for around 3 weeks in SE Asia, from Singapore.
I have been looking at outbackers which seems really reliable but there is a big difference in prices ranging between £200 and £400 fr 12 months. I am busy looking for insurance policies at the moment- are there any to be highly recommended? If it's 10k baht in cash that is required, that's what you should have.
With all of the tightening of visa restrictions in Thailand in the last few days and weeks, I'd suggest it's best to do what they ask. I was just wondering whether there was anything specific I should be mindful of or anything different about negotiating" in Thailand. I don't actually think anyone can out-haggle an Indian, although I'd like to think that the final price we settle on is fair for both parties involved (guess I'll never know unless I get sent a doll of myself with needles sticking out of it).
The problem is that I wouldn't know what to do with 2 weeks worth of clothes & extras with only that much space; I'm not Hermione Granger and cannot (to the best of my knowledge) use a bottomless charm on my pack. Also, I'm not entirely sure Indians do backpacks (at least I've never attempted it & my friends are of the pack-your-home variety) but I know they're probably a more sensible option than strollers. So, if you're giving yourself a couple of months, somewhere in Sep/Oct could be good.
It's one of my favourite times to be in that part of the world. We're going to new Zealand 1st for 2 weeks, and then flying to Hong Kong, then making our way down through Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, malaysia… briefly to Bali and then back to Singapore, to then fly to dehli to spend a week in india. Of course none of this might be true either, so always be prepared to walk away when things start looking dicey.
The girl touting for business outside the massage parlour may just want to give you a massage. The homeless kid that asks you for food may be genuinely hungry.
However, most places you'll find you'll be fine communicating as locals speak at least some English and much communication isn't verbal anyways, as I've learned through the years. In Thailand that would be Thai, Malay in Malaysia, etc. Depends on which country you're in regarding which language is spoken the most widely.
Delta folks are the friendliest in the country, with an outstanding variety of cuisines and indochina travel hanoi - indochinatravel.info, regional dishes. If you have more time, make the three-and-a-half-hour drive to Can Tho, the biggest city in the Mekong Delta (Asia's breadbasket), and the following morning experience a real floating market—not staged like you'll find in Thailand. Many people have heard that Saigon (the French district of Ho Chi Minh City) is boring and not worth a visit, but in fact it's one of Asia's most civilized cities, and it's small enough that you can see it all in a day.
Here's a few things I've figured out to help you enjoy your time in the region, and avoid a few of the pitfalls along the way. For me, it's utterly fascinating, achingly beautiful and one of the greatest places in the world to backpack, and somewhere I keep finding myself returning to year after year. No matter which way you look at it, South East Asia is one of the most interesting, vibrant, beautiful and complex areas in the world.
Within days much of eastern Bangkok was under 80 centimeters (2ft 6in) of water, sending thousands of residents into evacuation centers, and closing down Don Muang airport for six months. The Chao Phraya river rose to unprecedented levels, flood barriers were overwhelmed, and the floodwaters flowed into the khlongs (canal) and onto the streets of the capital. In 2011, when Thailand had 50 per cent more rain than usual, flooding began mid-year in the north, and water from the swollen rivers began to shift southwards, reaching Bangkok a few weeks later.
Not all floods disperse so quickly. Critics blame an inadequate drainage system, but then how does one design a drainage system efficient enough to cope with such all-out deluges? Some parts of Bangkok can flood in twenty minutes; floods which take two to three hours to drain away.
International carriers service multiple routes into the region, while domestic carriers will get you where you need to go within most Southeast Asian countries for under $70USD. They're easily the cheapest and most convenient way to get both to, and around, Southeast Asia, especially if you're on a tight schedule. The Airlines in this region will quickly become your best friends.
There are multiple Islamist and jihadist groups in southeast Asia, such as Jemaah Islamiyah in Thailand, Mujahedeen KOMPAK,Laskar Jihad in Indonesia and Abu Sayyaf in the Phillipines. Watch out for pickpockets in crowded areas and keep a close eye on your bags when traveling, particularly on overnight buses and trains. Violent crime is a rarity in Southeast Asia, but opportunistic theft is more common.
In Singapore in particular, the sheer scarcity of land drives accommodation rates up and you would be looking at more than US$150 per night for a four-star hotel. The rich city-states of Singapore and Brunei , which boast some of the highest GDP per capita in the world, can be more than twice as expensive as their neighbors, while at the other end of the spectrum, the difficulty of getting into and around underdeveloped places like Myanmar , East Timor and the backwoods of Indonesia drives up prices there too. Maybe we were lucky but I loved travelling around Vietnam.