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Flip-Flops - My Favourite Footwear

Locals wear them all day, for long walks, for construction work, climb mountains with them while many westerners judge that these poor people don't have the money to buy better shoes.

Having tried all sorts of footwear, I myself am convinced that flip-flops (also called thongs or slippers) are the best choice for most situations in a tropical climate. I go through 2 pairs a year.

You yet don't like the idea. You think that your feet sweat terribly, being in contact with this rubber stuff. In the real world, they lift off often enough not to sweat at all. If you sit down, you'll naturally slip out of them or at least not place your feet with the soles flat down on them. I've worn Birkenstocks for years while I lived in Europe, and though my Birks were leather, I sweat a lot more in them.
Should it ever happen that your feet get hot with flip-flops, just drag them through a puddle of water.

This thing between the toes is painful, some people find. Well, after about a week, one got accustomed to it. It does a good job at stopping you from slipping forward in extreme situations.

Flip-Flops are easily lost, true. Particularly in mud and fast-flowing water. In such cases, it's best to take them off (which is very quick with flip-flops) and walk barefoot. If you really lose them, they are not expensive to replace.

In some situations, flip-flops are slippery. Particularly cheap ones. This can be big fun on wet tiles (let's say, in front of a mall). It's less fun when climbing over rocks that are covered with moss. Don't attempt walking on a wet iron pipe with them, either. Again, just take them off, easily done in seconds.
In a lot of other situations, flip-flops are less slippery than sneakers.

Ever had a problem being bothered by shoeshine boys ? Wearing flip-flops is the solution.

With so many situations where you'd want to take your flip-flops off, the question arises where to put them. You could pull them over your arms. You could tie them with your belt. You could tie them to your other stuff. You could as well hold them in one hand, they are neither bulky nor heavy.
A situation when you don't take your flip-flops off: When poor, barefooted children are around. They might snatch them.

The most common breakdown mechanism of flip-flops:

  1. The sole wears through - cannot be repaired but happens gradually
  2. That thing between your toes pulls out from the sole - abrupt breakdown, but can be fixed with a piece of string:
    Successful repair of flip-flops. Need string, utility knife, gas lighter.

Other uses than walking them:

Abuse of flip-flops in Cambodia