Friday, March 14, 2008

Travel Tips

So I'm starting the packing process. There's a few blogs I read of people living in Liberia, and they sometimes will post 'helpful household hints' for things to bring to Liberia. I find it pretty helpful because my mind somehow always manages to forget something in the packing process.

For those of you who have traveled to, or lived in, Liberia....I want your tips. How about....3 things you're so glad you packed....and 3 things you wish you would have packed. And, even if you haven't been to Liberia....you can still give me your list! I'm interested to see what people say, and it might give me a great idea....or help me remember something that I otherwise would have forgotten.

Let the lists begin!

[8 more days!!]

In fairness, I'll list a few things I recommend for traveling to Liberia:
- If your a female....SKIRTS all the way!
- Lots of hand sanitizer
- Lots of trail mix, granola/protein bars, etc.
- 2-in-1 shampoo...those trickling cold showers have to be short, or it speeds up the bucket bath
- Travel size bugspray (with Deet) and sunscreen
- Extra batteries, in all sizes that apply to things you're taking
- Toilet paper...you never know when you'll need some
- Sturdy pair of sandals (I wore my chacos everyday for everything...except church)
- Earplugs or headphones....to drown out the generator (or snoring) when you're trying to sleep
- Travel size bottle of laundry detergent for sink laundry (undies & bras mostly)
- Nalgene bottles....then you can dump a few water bottles worth into one bottle, trust me, you'll end up drinking any water that you have access to....you can never drink enough!
- Some people are weird about bottle water, so if that's you, take some of those On-the-Go drink mix things. I recommend the Propel mixes, because that does more for you. Throw in some flavored ones (lemonade, tea, fruit punch, etc) if you tend to get tired of drinking water.
- For a shorter trip....a cannister of Gatorade powder. When I got sick, someone went into town to buy one at Abi Jaoudi's (like $8+), but it was a lifesaver! I've packed 2 cans (<$5 in the States). - If you're taking feminine products, do not pack them in a ziploc bag. Use a cosmetic bag or something that's not see-through. When I traveled over last year, every female who packed them in see-through bags (everyone but me) did not have them in their bags once they got to Liberia. I packed my stuff in a cosmetic bag and mine made it! I suggest dispersing them between bags (including carry-on), and this time I'm going to be super sneaky and pack some between clothing that's space saved. I know, it sounds crazy, but pads and tampons are a luxury in Liberia...so that's the only explanation I've got.
- Depending on the time of year....a few long sleeved, light-weight shirts....for bugs or when it gets chilly (the only 'chilly' I experienced was the 2 nights I had airconditioning). Also, at least one pair of pants for bugs.
- I set aside 2 tshirts, 1 long sleeved shirt and one pair of windsuit pants that I would wear for when I was the cleanest....aka....just out of the shower. That way I'd enjoy being clean for 10 minutes.

These are all basic things, and since I'm hardly into the packing process, I haven't really thought about everything. I'll make another list when I'm packed.

3 comments:

Raquel said...

ironically, there were 3 things that I REALLY wish that I would have remembered:

-more than the bra I wore on the plane. that was WEAK.
-my pillow. others just aren't the same.
-battery operated speakers for my ipod. what I wouldn't have done for music during the day (when the generator was off). a friend of mine has one that charges your ipod while it plays it...

Ashley said...

I agree about the pillow and speakers! Space save your pillow and it will take up very little space in your suitcase. If you're the type who needs a pillow for the plane (or catching some sleep on the floor of the airport), buy a travel pillow that rolls up and just clip it to your carry-on. After a month with no music (other than headphones) I was about to go crazy! I always have music playing...and usually listen to music and read at night to unwind. I'm taking iPod speakers this time. Now I'm going to have to try to find the ones that charge your iPod. I just got some cheap ones that run off the iPod battery.

Finn said...

You have mentioned the minor points as well.... it will be helpful for my next trip which I have booked through Quikbook.