Hello, there!

Our names are Amanda & Shawn and we are pleased to invite you on our journey. We challenge you to #growforthand and be adventurous. Buy a ticket to that foreign country you've always wanted to visit, learn how to scuba dive, bathe an elephant, go make friends in unexpected places. This is where we hope to inspire and drive you out of your comfort zone and into your happiest self because we sure have by moving to Chiang Mai.

We Left it All and Moved to Thailand

We Left it All and Moved to Thailand

Well…we didn’t leave it all…Shawn and I did bring our REI backpacking backpacks and a handheld bag.

"How did we decide to move to Thailand?" you may ask. We both just graduated from college and haven't made it to enough countries yet. We knew we needed to go somewhere cheap, so our money could last us. We've always wanted to go to Asia and teaching English seemed like the best way to be able to stay the longest. We completed our 120 hour TEFL on LoveTEFl and both have teaching jobs within three weeks of being in Thailand. We are very comfortable, to say the least!

With regards to packing, I’m happy we didn’t bring more. It’s nice to say that we do not have any regrets about packing. We read various travel blogs beforehand about what to pack, but we didn’t find many that detailed the items not to pack. So we thought we would make this list for you and break it down by categories. 


Of course, moving to a different country and backpacking are two different stories, but it's understandable in both cases if you want to have the comfort of travel sized toiletries. However, you don’t have to break a sweat when your Crest runs out, there are plenty of other options here (believe me you do not need another reason to sweat in this heat). I just purchased a large bottle of Colgate Whitening, which was 35 TBH at 7/11, which is the equivalent of $1. 

All toiletries that you could miss from home are here. Yes, ladies tampons are rare and I brought months worth, but they are around in all grocery stores, but just not as much of a selection. Everything else you could need is here, including tooth brushes at every 7/11, deodorant, body wash, shampoo, and conditioner. I happily bought my Dove shampoo and conditioner and Tesco and went along my way. 

What we would suggest you to bring are sunscreen and bug spray. Go full force with the DEET. As appealing as the organic ones sound, they unfortunately, do not work as well.  It is widely available everywhere, but is very expensive! Even though sunscreen is expensive at home, this is one item that is actually more expensive here.


Shawn and my bags were 40% filled with our over the counter medicine. From Shawn's severe allergies to my acid reflux, we are quite the mess. Besides the 15 Epi Pens we brought, we also brought Zantac and so much Benadryl. There are pharmacies on almost every corner and have anything you could need. However, we haven't seen brand name medication yet, so bring the ones that you trust. 


Bring the apparel you can't live without, but that's it! Everything else you can buy here and will want to buy here is 75% less than you would at home. However, shoes are very important. They have plenty of options here, but as sizes are different (especially if you have larger feet) use the extra room in your backpack for shoes. My Nikes and Tevas have been very reliable. 


We bought a great travel adaptor from Amazon, which has usb ports and outlets for efficient charging sessions. We also bought this external battery, which has been very reliable for charging our phones while traveling. Of course, bring your camera and GoPro. 

That's about everything we brought. Feel free to email us at growforthand@gmail.com with any questions you have about packing and Thailand in general. We would be happy to help you in any way that we can. 

Until next time my friends!

First Stop, Bangkok

First Stop, Bangkok