Planning on travelling to the great East Asia but is quite anxious on what to expect? Arm yourself with some travel must-haves we have listed below for you. Whether it be a trip to Japan, Korea, Macau, Hong Kong, Taiwan, or Mongolia, all these things we recommend will surely come in handy at one point in time. Must you know, East Asian nations showcase some of the most rich, colourful, and diverse cultures in the world. Wondering what best to bring on your first adventure to East Asia? Well, care to read on!
- A Comprehensive Map: Navigating the streets of East Asian countries can be tough and challenging —especially to an expatriate who is visiting the country for the first time. Having a comprehensive map at hand will be a reliable friend during your monumental trip to the great orient. Purchase one that has identifiable landmarks on it so you can easily find your back to your reference point in case you get lost.
- A Pocket wifi: Staying connected online even while you are away from home is necessary in case an emergency will arise and you need to communicate to people back in your home country. Bringing a pocket wifi in countries like Korea and Japan is a common thing for travellers to do, “I can get easily bored and I have a short attention span so I really need to always get updated online. I like posting videos and pictures promptly so when I am travelling overseas, I make sure I bring the pocket wifi a bought in Japan,” shared Tomomichi Shiun, a travel blogger.
- A Dictionary for translation: Countries like Japan and Korea rarely have English signage on national roads and other public places. Make sure to bring a dictionary with you and equip yourself with standard greetings in the native tongue of the country you are going to visit. This shows that you respect the country’s culture and that you are not ethnocentric in any way.
- A High Quality Camera: You wouldn’t want your phone to do all the photography work. You owe it to the beautiful sceneries to use a real camera (perhaps a point-and-shoot or a DSLR). It comes to a point that one must take photography with some sense of respect especially when we talk about rare sights that you may only see once in your lifetime.
- A pair of kicks or rubber shoes: The best way to freely wander in East Asia is making sure you have the most comfortable footwear. Forget about those heels and wedges, you’d travel far and become more joyful if your feet aren’t hurting every time you have to uphill or on rough surfaces. Besides, travellers should always be carefree!
An ample knowledge of the country’s customs and traditions: A mark of a cultured traveller can be best summed up by the popular adage, “Do as Romans do”. For instance, in Japan, slurping your soup is considered an appreciation to the one who cooked and prepared the meal; in Korea, sticking your chopsticks in your rice is considered rude and unethical; in Taiwan, if you were invited into someone’s home, it is customary to bring a gift; in Hong Kong, you are not supposed to eat the last piece served on a tray; in Mongolia, it is impolite to write anything using a red pen. There can be so many of them so make sure to research first before your much anticipated visit.