Entertainment

TRAVELING LIGHT – African Entertainment

 

 

I know Traveling Light is not one of our Ghanaian strengths, especially of our ladies, but I can see the changes.

Many years ago, most Ghanaians traveling out, mostly loaded themselves with the maximum number of suitcases, constantly juggling with overloaded hand luggage both in the number and weight.

Long queues at check-in because of overloading, and opening of suitcases throwing lots of things from one suitcase into the other disturbing other waiting passengers.

Ghanaians who are still doing that are probably not aware that today you can get everything you can buy in London, Amsterdam, Frankfort, New York and any other place in Europe and the USA you can buy in Ghana as well. The Shoprights, Melcoms, Palace, Game and other stores changed the narrative.

We all know that China has become the factory of the world. TVs, radios, cameras and many other items you buy in Europe or the USA are actually produced in China, India, Bangladesh etc. So why do some people still buy them abroad whilst the earlier mentioned shops bring them straight from China to Ghana, mostly at a lower price and always without you paying extra cost for kg you overloaded.

I have seen the change in the last 10 years, Ghanaians have started traveling lighter than ever before. But we are not there yet.

Do you know that KLM and other airlines have, just like budget airlines started selling tickets with only one suitcase? Sometimes they offer tickets to Ghana with “hand luggage” only.

If you book a ticket the cheapest offers are always without luggage, without seat allocation and hand luggage only. If you leave the seat allocation to the airline it can save you between 8 and 40 USD, they will book you a random seat.

But if you are able to book with 1 instead of 2 suitcases it can save you 40-50 USD.

Without “hold luggage” as its called it can save you much more than that.

When I travelled around the world for my job, years ago there were no lower prices for less hold luggage. But after losing my suitcase twice (nine-eleven in London and a trip to Johannesburg a year later) I learned my lesson. From the second time on I would travel with hand luggage only.

After some time, I became an expert in: TRAVELING LIGHT and could travel up to 10 days with hand luggage only.

Here is my advice / instructions: Verify hand luggage seize and weight of the airline(s) you travel with. Some allow 10 kg, others 8 kg, some allow a slightly larger hand luggage, some exclude strollers and allow only backpack or bag that can fit under your seat only.

1) You know the occasion you are traveling for so only take clothes, shoes you need

2  Check the weather online before traveling, pack accordingly 

3) Wear your heaviest clothes, coat and shoes for traveling

4) Pack trousers (1), suit (1) in neutral colors and inter changeable

5) Pack 1 pair of shoes that are of a different color you are wearing when traveling

6) Pack shirts, ties, socks etc you can combine with your trousers / suit

7) Pack 2-3 pairs of socks underwear only, you can always wash it in your hotel

8) Use a belt which has a black side and a brown side so you can change it.

9) Use small toiletry bag with mini packages for toothpaste, deodorant aftershave etc.

10) Don’t forget a small sewing kit and fast glue just in case you don’t have alternatives

You will find out that all these minimal sized items will easily fit into a standard 55-35-25 cm and 10 kg stroller of most airlines. Once you have all of that packed you can pack other items you think will be useful. Don’t forget to check the weight after you are ready, otherwise the airline staff will take it from you and will still loaded in hold.

Other travel tips:

When you travel for the first time to another country try to find out prices of clothes, shoes etc. Often they are much cheaper at your destination than in your own country. So next time pack less and buy the rest at your destination.

When you travel at the end of summer to a destination on the other side of world, your favorite brands of winter (or summer) clothes can be bought at SALES prices just before you need it, because their winter or summer has ended and shops are selling their seasonal stocks at lower prices.

Hardly anybody travels without bringing a present home. DON’T BUY THEM AT AIRPORTS ! The times that clothes, electronics, alcohol and tobacco were cheaper at airports ended long time ago. Don’t forget that despite the fact that you don’t pay VAT these shops are paying huge amounts of rent which reflects in their sales prices. Buy presents locally before you leave to the airport.

Another tip, especially for all my Ghanaian friends ARRIVE ON TIME.

Enjoy you (cheaper) flights.

 

Nico C.M. van Staalduinen

 

Just a concerned Ghanaian

 




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