LyndaS -Packing LIst Question

Old Mar 6th, 2010, 01:54 PM
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LyndaS -Packing LIst Question

Lynda - I've read your packing list posted in 2006. Now that you've done your trip.... what did you take off your list and what did you find you actually needed? What did you take that you DID NOT need? I'm going to Tanzania in June. I know I'll take way less than what you originally posted, but would love to hear what you needed and didn't. Anything you wished you'd brought and didn't? Brought and wished you hadn't?
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Old Mar 6th, 2010, 07:41 PM
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Hi Cateyes555

Sometime before our third safari in 2009, I did up a list for someone on the board, and followed it almost to the "T" when we went last year - and it worked! I think I can copy it here:

LADIE'S (men's would be similar)

3 t-shirts
2 short sleeved shirts or blouses
1 long sleeved shirt (re mosquitoes)
1 pants (to travel & for dinner if needed)
2 convertible pants
1 capris
1 rain/wind jacket - 'packable' is best
1 fleece sweater/jkt for layering & cold nights
1 pr walking sandals
1 pr closed in shoes
1 pr thongs (pool & around tent/lodge)
1 pr pyjamas - light weight 'summer' flannel is good
2 socks - quick dry
6 pr underwear - quickdry if possible
3 bras
1 bathing suit
1 cover up (double duty - pool & around room as robe)
1 hat

passport & visa (or visa applications filled in)
drivers licence - handy for second photo ID
one credit card - Visa or MC best
ATM card
Yellow Fever Certificate - if needed
travel insurance docs & cards
itineraries, e-tickets or vouchers

shampoo, conditioner
facial cleanser, body wash, moisturizer
small washcloth
toothpste & toothbrush
All toiletries should be in small, disposable containers, toss as you use them

a few bandaids
small tube of neosporin
Contact C
Non- drowsy antihistamine
Rolaids or Tums
All above was in a little bag I carried within my day bag - just a bit of each

Cortate cream/ after bite
pkgs of OFF wipes
small bottle of insect repellent
sun-burn lotion SPF 30
These live in my day bag - all are small containers/pkgs

travel roll of Toilet Paper (from Magellans)
antiseptic wipes in pkg
a few sandwich bags for leaving 'no trace'
Again - always in my day bag

small bottle of hand wash soap
twistable pegless clothes line
Tide To Go pen -invaluable to me

one paperback book
a small field guide - your guide may have
a few pens
small note cards with envelopes - for tips/notes
journal book
small exchange calculator, if you need (I do)
cheap plastic file pouch for documents (8 1/2 x 11)
portfolio or zipped pouch for valuables for safe
airline neck pillows (inflatable)-doubles as butt cushion on game drives
some sheets of bubble wrap for breakables purchased
small Kleenex packages (2)
converter and adapters for the area
very small multi plug outlet
binoculars - some TO's provide, some don't
travel alarm clock-for really early wake up
extra batteries
sunglasses & sunglass cords
small basic sewing kit -just enough for hem/button
a bit of duct tape -wrap around a pen
flashlight or reading light
small travel coffee mugs-for game drives
suitcase locks - for when in-camp/lodges
cheap plastic pkg rain coat for game drives in case
cameras & gear

This list really did work, and I came VERY close to being within that 33 lbs. We bought a duffle bag this time, it weighed only 2 lbs, so we had 31 lbs to play with. As I am a plus size person though, my clothes weigh more (more there to weigh!), so most people will not be overweight with this list - my son used it & his bag was 29 lbs. The only thing on the list that I didn't take was the closed in shoes & the two pair of socks. I took them the first year & never wore them, so really all I had was a pair of walking sandals & my house 'slippers' which are really Clarke's slip ons.

There was quite a lot on my FIRST list that I didn't use, didn't need or really could have done without to save weight. Some of them are pretty obvious, but just for fun I would love to go through the original list and comment on what worked & what didn't! I'm going to post this now, as dinner is ready, and then I'll come back, dig out the original list and disect it!

Back after dinner!
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Old Mar 8th, 2010, 08:10 AM
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Thanks Lynda! I'll look forward to any further packing comments you post.
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Old Mar 8th, 2010, 12:06 PM
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Thanks, Lynda - I'll be using this as a starting point for my packing!
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Old Mar 8th, 2010, 01:17 PM
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Well that dinner was long, wasn't it?

I've gone thru my original list (laughing all the way through the thread some of it is pretty funny & some of the wierd things I thought I might need is hilarious!)

Here's what's missing from the top list (or changed) and why-

- 3 t-shirts (not 4) and 2 blouses or shirts did me just fine in 2009, I didn't miss the 4th t-shirt I had on the original list.

- I increased the convertible pants to two because I found I LIVED in them, they are light weight fabric, easily washed out at night and dry the next day, but having 2 pair was very handy. That way I didn't have to wash them every second night.

-I dropped the multi pocket vest after the first year, the novelty wore off quickly. In 2008 I bought a National Geographic camera bag for a 'day pack' - it fit camera, camera stuff, and all of the little things like TP, baggies, band aids, sun block that you need to carry with you. It worked way better than the vest.

-the fleece 'hoodie' became just a fleece the second year, you really don't need a hood there.

-I did not wear the shorts at all the first year, not needed as I had convertibles & if I was really hot (seldom) I could just 'zip off'.

-'slipper's' is not a real pair of slippers, it's just a pair of slip on sandals I wear around the house - thongs would be great, double for around the pool or around a lodge.

-as mentioned I dropped the closed in shoes as I didn't wear them, but I left them on the list as most people would. And if there are walks in the wild, they will be needed, along with the socks.

-one pr of lightweight pj's is really all that is needed - at Lemala I added my fleece for bed & was fine.

-6 pr of undies are needed, 4 was way too little

-the throw-away undies remain on my list for those long travel days, no better feeling than getting to London, throwing out your underwear, & then doing it again in Nairobi! When I determine at home that my underwear is on it's last legs , instead of throwing it out, I wash it one more time, put it away in my travel drawer & then use them as 'disposable' for travel days. Really works great!

-the gloves came off the list in 2007, NEVER wore them, not even for the balloon ride

Oh oh, lunch is done, have to get back to work, I will come back & finish off the 'other than clothes' later!
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Old Mar 8th, 2010, 03:56 PM
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What time of year is this list recommended for? We are going in September.
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Old Mar 8th, 2010, 05:14 PM
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For shame, Lynda! I don't see any dental floss on that list. Naughty naughty.
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Old Mar 29th, 2010, 05:20 AM
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Just back from a month in Tanzania. A few thoughts to add to the above:

Here's how I decided on clothes -- 4 days in each of 4 camps. So I packed four days worth of clothes and had laundry done in each camp. Worked perfectly.

Have a good big hat, but one that's floppy and can be rolled up or packed.

We packed in the large size LL Bean duffel bags. They are cheap, well made, can be monogrammed with your name for ID and weigh practically nothing.

Here’s what I took (ladies).
· 2 linen long sleeve safari/camp style shirts (great for sun protection and wind in the open vehicles)
· 2 pair of the zip leg safari style pants. (They wash and dry like a dream – mine came from Lands End)
· 2 pair of very lightweight linen long pants for dinners
· 2 pair of cotton Capri length pants
· 2 skorts from Lands End in the same material as the zip leg pants. (I don’t do shorts)
· 4 very loose sleeveless tops
· 4 camis
· 2 long sleeve very lightweight tee shirts –for mosi protection.
· 1 lightweight fleece (Lands End)
· 1 lightweight rain parka
· 1 pair of pajamas
· My Chacos-Zongs and my Keen-Newport H2 shoes + one pair of cheap “blingy” flip flops for dressing up.
· A big, wide brimmed hat.
· A swimsuit
· 3 bras
· 4 undies
· 2 pair of socks
· A couple of bandanas
Everything in mix/match safari green/brown colors.

· You will want some really, really good binoculars – one set for each traveler.
· 30 to 60 SPF sunscreen – one big bottle.
· A very good mosi guard. Lots of discussion on this board about which is best.
· Some really good wind protection for your face. The air from driving in open vehicles can do more damage than the sun. I used a 45-sunscreen stick that felt like Vaseline on my face, but did the trick. At times I tied the bandana around my face. Take a wrap around neck scarf.
· Very good lip protection.
· Afternoon diversions – like a good book. There are no game drives from 1-4 during the heat of the day.
· I took 3 each of the hotel sized shampoo and conditioners and tossed them along the way. The camps do provide shampoo, soaps, and detergent for washing delicates.
· You cannot use hair appliances at any if these camps. Get a haircut that requires no maintenance.
· You don’t need much make-up. It’s either too hot or too dark (dinners by candles) for anyone to care.
· There are no wash cloths in any of the baths.
· All the paths are sand or rocks – take appropriate shoes. Some times there is ellie poo on the path at night. Watch your step.
· All the showers had those big horizontal rainheads. Its impossible to avoid, so take a shower cap if your hairstyle can’t take the water.
· Azithromiacin is a miracle cure for traveler’s revenge – which most everyone will get a mild case of about 10 days into the trip. Ask your doctor for some to take along. One pill was all it took to save a day.
· You must have a journal. There are just too many wonderful moments to remember.
· Drink, drink, drink.....water is your friend.

I have to disagree with the throw-away underwear idea. I packed only 4 pair of panties (Hanes No Line) and 3 bras to wash out by hand. I washed at least some every day to keep them fresh. How many pair do you pack if you're tossing them along the way instead of washing?

Every camp provided shampoo, conditioner, hand and laundry soap. No need to add that to your weight. You can hang up clothes to dry on anything -- no need for a line or clothes pegs.

You don't need a calculator to do money exchange. Everyone takes US dollars. We never exchanged money even once.

Take "copies" of your drivers licenes and passport. You don't need any ID other than the passport. I left my drivers license at home - along with all the other wallet cards.

No need to pack toilet paper from home. Grab it from your tent each day before departing.

The camps all have field guides. Too much weight to drag them along.

If you purchase something breakable - the shops all have wrapping items - including bubble wrap.

Most cell phones have an alarm feature. No need to double up with a phone and a clock. Besides, the camp sends a wake up to your tent each day. Didn't need a clock or alarm.

Used cable ties instead of heavy suitcase locks.

I wouldn't take a travel mug for coffee on the go. The roads were so bumpy we could barely drink bottled water while driving. We were also holding binoculars ( DO NOT go without a pair for everyone)and camera, I wouldn't have had an extra hand for coffee.

No safari vest for us on this trip either, LyndaS.

Lots and lots and lots of memory for your digital camera. We took several small memory sticks instead of taking the chance of having everything on just one.

Edit once you get home. It takes lots of battery power to review and edit. Just have extra memory and do the editing later.
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Old Mar 31st, 2010, 11:51 PM
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TC, the throw away undies are only for the way there & possibly on the way back - when I get to the half-way stop over (usually London) I just toss them. I bring usually 2 pr of throw away undies & 6 pair of undies to wash out in the sink - I tried 4 pair to wash out in 2007 but found that 6 worked better for me last year. I didn't see laundry soap at any camps or lodges, probably could have asked, but I use those tiny soap sheets, they don't take up much room.

I did cable ties instead of locks the first year, somehow someone at one of the lodges managed to slip that cable tie, go into my bag, take some money and put the cable back. It is possible I had the cable in wrong - apparently there is a right & a wrong way to lock those ties & I must have done it the wrong way. Or, either that, or they had an identical cable tie to mine, which considering mine was bright yellow, I doubt that.

Agree on the field guide, our drivers always had them. I didn't bring one last time, but I left it on the list as I don't know that all drivers/outfitters have them.

We never travel with a cell phone, thus the travel alarm clock. The cell phone stays at home on our desks with a mesasge saying "we are REALLY out of the country, call back in a month" Hubby is a really early riser, he likes to get up at 4 & dawdle when we have a 7 AM game run. At a few camps we have been told 5 AM is the earliest they will come to the tent, so he used the alarm.

We use local money wherever possible, we stop at an ATM in KY and then once we get into TZ. Agreed most people don't really need a calculator though, but mine is small & I find it handy as I can never do this exchange stuff in my head - too used to a calculator on my desk I guess!

Absolutely agree on the journal - a must!!!

I just couldn't live without the coffee mug, sometimes too bumpy yes, but when you stop to watch the lion sleep, nothing better than coffee while you are watching!

Leely - darn I knew I forgot something!!!!
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 07:32 AM
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Hi Lynda, Too bad about your stolen money. We switched to bright colored cable ties (yes, there is a right and wrong way to use them) when a NY hotel employee showed me how amazingly easy it is to open a combination lock on a suitcase and then put it back. If you just pull tention on the lock and spin the dial, it clicks right into the correct spaces and opens. I found this out when I somehow messed up the number, locked my case and couldn't get back into it. I asked for someone to cut the lock off and he showed me that wasn't necessary. Wow! In China the equivalant to TSA opened all our keyed locks, then put them back on the wrong cases. No ones key fit their lock. Luckily we were all in a group when we realized this, so we fitted keys to locks until everyone got their rightful set. Guess there's no perfect solution.

Arent' those soap sheets cool? I keep them in my purse all the time at home. Pier One sells them in lots of great scents.

We have the cell phone along for the domestic portion of the trip and then its just there -- not turned on. Its easy to use as an alarm clock. For those who take the phone, its just one more thing that can do double duty....and I'm all about double duty!
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 03:58 PM
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This is hilarious. We have the list, we have the questions to the list. Now what other list related posts can we have?

Perhaps a post-trip this worked best or I did not use this from Lynda's list.

There was a thread a long time ago on what you wished you had brought.

If I use a cable tie, what device do I use to remove it? My Swiss Mountain Army knife is likely in the bag with the cable lock. Once or twice I've had my guide slash open the tie, but left to my own devices, I might be stuck.

I would have liked to see the musical luggage go-round when you all arived at your destination in China with the wrong locks. That could actually be a good ice-breaker technique at the start of a group trip, if tempers could be kept in check. Don't worry I'm not a group leader and won't pull that on any of you who choose group travel in your future.
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Old Apr 2nd, 2010, 07:21 AM
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To open cable ties, we keep simple nail clippers in the outside pocket of our checked luggage. If the nail clippers are small you can even keep them in your carry-on. The point is - no lock will keep out a determined thief. The cable ties will keep out most, will show you if the case has been opened (since they can't be replaced in tact) and keeps the case from springing open and spilling the content on the airport carrousel. I buy my cable ties at the local hardward store and they are the most outrageous colors -- hot pink, lime green, dayglow orange. Not many thieves would have a pocketful in those colors.
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Old Apr 2nd, 2010, 02:29 PM
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But Lynda, what about the stapler?!!
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Old Apr 2nd, 2010, 02:33 PM
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Wow, thanks everyone for all these helpful packing tips!!! I'm not even sure what "cable ties" are but I will look in the local hardware store as that sounds like a great idea.

Only 2 months now until my first trip ever to Africa - Tanzania. I am so excited!!
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Old Apr 2nd, 2010, 06:56 PM
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Kavey, oh yes that stapler does come with me - for sure every year! You know me - Have Stapler, Will Travel (as we all break out into song here).

Lynne, I think you SHOULD become a group leader & I think the suitcase lock musical chair switch thing would be a great ice breaker!

Cateyes555, cable ties are those plastic kind of zip-lock kind of things with teeth that go one way. You have to cut them off to get them off - unless of coure you do what I did and put them on upside down (backwards?) then they look like they can only go one way, but they don't, they slide both ways if on wrong and can be taken on & off easily!

These were the things that electricians & telephone installers, etc use to use to bundle together all the cords. Most people use the velcro kind now (which won't work for suitcases), but you can still find the plastic cable ties of all sizes at most hardware stores.

I get the hot coloured ones, same as TC mentioned, I found them at a Japanese $2.00 store named Daiso. They are cool! At the same $2.00 store (everything is really $2.00 in the whole store) I found a pair of wire snippers, I keep those in the outside pocket (unlocked) of my checked bag to snip them - same as TC does. Had them for years, haven't disappeared yet!
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Old Apr 3rd, 2010, 08:04 AM
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Ha haaa, figured it must still be there!

I still have such a strong memory of your AMAZING trip journal after that first trip, so impressive!
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Old Apr 3rd, 2010, 06:08 PM
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The nail clippers I had did not put a dent in the cable ties. Back to the thought that a thief will get in if they want, I try to use inexpensive looking luggage so my bag is less worth the risk. I usually put some kind of lock on it to prevent the quick unzip and grab.

The stapler is a Fodors Africa Forum Legend. Along with all the animals going to Angola, the wooden crocodile in the pool, and ending up in Burundi by accident.
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Old Apr 26th, 2010, 06:30 AM
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LyndaS, thank you so much for taking the time to make the list. I just discovered the revised list. I had been working off the one from 2006 (still curious about wine gums). I'm wondering if you dropped the coffee pot and coffee from your list. I know you use the cup for game drives but did you find that you were brought coffee with your wake up call and the pot wasn't necessary?
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Old Apr 26th, 2010, 01:42 PM
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I don't want to hijack the thread - but Lynn - I remember the stapler, animals in Angola and Burundi by accident - but don't remember the wooden croc in the pool. What trip report was that from???

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