Contrary to popular belief that only sunny locations are worth visiting, there are plenty of places on the planet that are just breathtaking and at the same time also very rainy. On the other hand even the driest summer beaches get rain from time to time and who knows; maybe it will be your turn. In any case, rain doesn’t have to ruin your trip. Remember, skin is waterproof, and getting wet every once in a while won’t kill you. However when traveling to places it rains a lot you need to be ready, preparation is key to making sure that you enjoy your adventures. So how to be prepared for rain during your travels?
Choose Clothes Appropriate to Your Destination
What you should pack for rainy travel destinations will depend on where exactly you are going, and what the conditions will be like there. There is a big difference between a cold and rainy destination and tropical climes during the rainy season, for example.
For cold and wet destinations, warmth, in addition to a degree of weatherproofing or waterproofing, will obviously be a key consideration when choosing your clothes. Natural materials like wool can be a good choice, as these will actually get warmer when wet. However, in colder climes, it will also be harder to dry clothes, so thinner, quick-drying layers could be a good choice.
In hot climates with high humidity and rainfall, you’ll want to stay dry without being too hot and sticky. Rather than choosing non-breathable waterproof clothing, you might want to consider quick drying breathable layers instead.
Use a Waterproof Backpack
What luggage you use will obviously be very important too. No matter what clothes you pack, if your backpack is not waterproof, they can easily get wet while you are travelling. It is not a problem if get wet from time to time. Water won’t kill you. But having nothing dry to change into can really ruin your trip. Waiting for your clothes to dry is also no fun at all.
This is why a real waterproof backpack, one that you can easily drop into the sea, will help you keep your belongings safe and dry even in the most torrential of downpours. Problem with most waterproof backpacks is that they are not the most practical to use (they usually lack pockets and other features) and not very pleasing to the eye. If I would have to choose it would be the DryTide 50l pack for sure, it is packed with features and it looks cool.
Pack a Waterproof Poncho/Folding Umbrella To Cover You & Your Pack
If your backpack isn’t waterproof, you can partly solve this problem by using a large waterproof poncho or big folding umbrella. They will both cover you and your pack and can help you to retrieve items from your luggage while out in the rain without everything getting wet. The other solution is to put all your belongings in plastic bags first, and then into the backpack. Both solutions are not ideal. Sometimes your luggage can be left in the rain without you near it (during transfers, on the pickup truck, on the boat etc…) and putting things in and out of plastic bags can be a pain, not to mention that water can get in anyway. So a waterproof backpack really is the best option.
Use a Waterproof Wallet to Protect Paperwork, Maps & Documents
In a wet climate, your documents and paperwork, and many maps that you might need to carry with you, are obviously the most important things to protect. Clothes and other belongings can be dried out, but papers could be damaged by wet beyond repair. Use a waterproof wallet to keep these things in, so they stay dry no matter how much rain you encounter. Electronic items and important devices could also be protected with an extra waterproof case.
Make Sure Items You’ll Need on The Go Are Easily Accessible
In the rain, there is nothing worse than discovering that you need to open your pack and delve deep to retrieve something that you urgently need. Make sure that you are organised, and have placed the items you will need to retrieve while out and about towards the top of the pack, or in an easily accessed pocket, so everything else does not get wet.
Check the Forecast
Sounds like a no brainer. But people usually just check some general weather forecast for the area and that is it. Detailed weather models that show precipitation and cloud cover got really good in recent years. By checking these weather charts you can get a much more in depth forecast and a better idea when and where it will likely rain.
Don’t Forget Your Towel
Finally, if you are travelling to a wet weather area, even if it is not on the top 10 wettest places on Earth list, make sure that you have a towel with you. A towel is a multi-functional item for travel. It can be useful in a wide range of situations. A towel can not only allow you to dry off when you get wet, it can also be laid out to protect things from wet flooring or drips, or used to wipe off your backpack or outside gear before going inside, for example. Choose a quick drying travel towel, or a lightweight travel towel for backpacking trips.
These tips should help you stay comfortable and happy, no matter how wet the weather may get.