Shipping items home from Africa

Feb 3rd, 2007, 12:06 PM
  #1  
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Shipping items home from Africa

We had such a wonderful time in Zambia and spent the last afternoon at a craft market in Lusaka before flying home. We bought as much as we could that we thought stuff in our luggage, but there were many more things that were impossible to bring home with us--eg. large wood carvings and drums. I noticed a Fed Ex office in the ap in Lusaka but it was too late to see if they could have packaged and shipped our items? Has anyone had any experience shipping purchased items home from Africa? Good or bad?

Jim
steeliejim is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2007, 12:40 PM
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If it is just traditional type African stuff, I just bought or had baskets with tops made, tied with some good string and shipped slow boat home. Even small stuff that would held 5-20 rolls of film. All of them make it. The only place I have no faith in is South Africa.

My thinking is if they what something, why would they risk stealing African craft they could make or buy for next to nothing.
luangwablondes is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2007, 01:35 PM
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"My thinking is if they what something, why would they risk stealing African craft they could make or buy for next to nothing."


Good point. Thanks. What were the mechanics and who did you go through to send your items (ie "slow boat")?

Jim
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Feb 3rd, 2007, 01:51 PM
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Hello,

I shipped some things (ceramic bowls and cups) home via the Post Office in South Africa, also by the slow route. It was quite inexpensive and it was nice not to have to worry about them breaking while I was travelling around SA. I just got a cardboard box and wrapped everything in newspaper.

Cheers,
Julian
jasher is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2007, 02:28 PM
  #5  
 
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Yep. The Post Ofice is the way to go. The PO is on Cairo Rd.in Lusaka. Easy to find. I have shipped this way also in Tanz, Zim, Uganda, and Kenya. The fun I had out of this is I picked the design, size, ect. with the basketmakers in markets and villages. They make very good gifts.

I'm glad Jasher had good experiences in SA. I had a carton shipped in once. Disappeared from the time I got notified it arrived at the PO and the 24 hrs later when I went to pick it up. Fortunately it was insured. I just won't bother trying it again in SA from the stories South Africans have passed on. Fed Ex or DHL only in SA for me.
luangwablondes is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2007, 02:45 PM
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Hi Robbie,

It probably helped that the only box I could find on a Saturday morning in the Winelands was scavenged from Pick n' Pay. I don't think anyone was interested in what looked like a box of long-life milk.

Cheers,
Julian
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Feb 3rd, 2007, 03:07 PM
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We shipped an expensive (for us, though it was the cheapest one they had) Nelson Mandela print home as we bought it at the start of a 9 week trip and knew it would be likely to get crushed. We went to a local supermarket, asked them for a few spare large cardboard boxes and Pete fashioned an incredibly strong flat box for it. Solid. We looked at the prices for an internetional courier firm but then went to the Post Office which was much cheaper for the same service. We ended up chatting quite a bit with one of the members of staff who told us that said international courier firm actually charged double what the PO charge and then brought the items for quite a few destinations to the PO to send anyway!!!! Anyway, it got home safe and sound, the box didn't have a dent!
Kavey is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2007, 04:51 PM
  #8  
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Thanks all for the info. Do you if there are package size limits, and if so, what they might be? I know that the US the post office won't let you send packages beyond a certain size.

Jim
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