So you're about to embark on a humanitarian mission trip? That's so exciting. We're confident you will find it a wonderfully enriching experience and create memories that will last forever. But before you head off, there are lots to think about, especially if you want to make the most of your trip.
At Diversity Travel, we have had our fair share of helping plan and organize an array of humanitarian mission trips worldwide. So, we've definitely picked up a tip or two when it comes to packing and managing your affairs. Here are some travel and packing tips you may find super handy when jetting off to work in a developing country.
Do you need to take it all?
When deciding what to pack, it's worth remembering that you may be able to find most supplies, including the bare necessities in the country you visit. You should be able to find bulkier items such as shampoo, laundry detergent, cookware, utensils, spices, towels, sheets, duct tape, buckets, and some sanitary products in most locations.
In essence, determine which items are worth lugging over and decide which ones you're happy to go on the hunt for when you arrive. This is also a great way to get acquainted with your new surroundings.
Packing smartly will also help save money on ever-increasing baggage fees, another area Diversity Travel can assist. By enlisting our expert travel support, we ensure that any crucial documentation and arrangements have been made to make your airport customs experience as seamless as possible. We make sure the relevant authorities know that the baggage allowance will need to be adjusted to accommodate humanitarian aid policies and rates.
So, in a nutshell, we ensure you're not overpaying in luggage fees and that you're not penalized for carrying vital supplies.
Items to pack
Once you have determined what you can source once you get there, it's easy to make room for the essentials, such as;
Appropriate Clothing: Pack light and choose clothes accordingly. Think about the type of tasks you'll be doing, the weather forecast and the weight of certain items. We find it's best to layer in case of unpredictable weather conditions and any circumstances that arise.
Universal Power Adapter: Helpful not just for the country you're going to, but for countries you may be travelling through.
Earplugs: We suggest taking more than two. Finding a quiet or comfortable place to sleep can be a challenge. Keep noise to a minimum by taking some earphones…they'll help make for a more restful night's sleep.
Medications: Make sure to arrange the right supply of any prescriptions you need. You can get most medications in any pharmacy abroad, but it can be harder to source, especially as you're unlikely to speak the language.
First Aid Kit: Make sure you take a decent first aid kit, ensure it has all the essentials and added extras if you can. A flashlight is always a great idea, too, as are antihistamines.
Face Masks: In this era of global pandemics, you need to bring masks. They are also great for protecting yourself whilst administering medical aid.
Portable Water Purifier: You can find these at most any outdoor stores.
Small Travel Bag: Or a place to hold essential travel documents such as passports.
Mosquito Net: Get a decent one of these, you can also get one you can wear as part of your hat for added protection.
Sleeping Bag and Sleeping Bag Liner: Great for questionable sheets and blankets. You’re unlikely to be blessed with space, so try not to take any electronics, jewellery or other valuables while travelling. Things can get easily lost or broken, so it's best to keep meaningful/irreplaceable items back at home.
And finally...Take a can-do attitude
Going on any humanitarian trip will take its toll, it's both mentally and physically exhausting, but the rewards outweigh all the challenges. Keep in the forefront of your mind that you are helping create positive change and improving the lives of those less fortunate, which is something to be incredibly proud of.
Remember we can help!
At Diversity travel, we have had the pleasure of helping organizations arrange humanitarian trips that touch the heart and improve the lives of those who need it most.
Contact us today to find all the ways we can help your organization, including travel arrangements, necessary paperwork, the best rates on baggage allowance, reliable accommodation, and so much more.