Going on a road trip is an adventure that requires a lot of packing and planning; the road can be annoying, and you’re going to be far away from the comforts of your home — better to be safe than sorry.
The Jollof Road team are currently touring West African countries, having the best time of their life and telling important stories while at it. Before they left, they had to do a shitload of planning to ensure that nothing goes wrong on the trip.
Here are eleven travel tips they’ve got for you on what you must have before embarking on a similar trip:
Get the right documents:
Passports, and yellow cards are some of the important documents to carry. Having these important documents will ensure you don’t waste time when it’s time to cross a border.
MAKE SURE TO GET ALL THE SHOTS DONE
This is to avoid stories that touch the heart, TBH. It’s true that you can pay the officials off to not get the yellow fever vaccine and just get your yellow card. BUT we advice you not to, you don’t know where there’s an outbreak and whatnot. Secondly, it’s important to get the meningitis vaccination done. When you get to Ivory Coast, if you don’t have proof of having done it, they’re going to make you do it.
Agent Or Fixer:
If you’re going to be crossing a border or several borders like the Jollof team is doing, you want to ensure that you factor an agent or fixer into your budget. Who is an agent or fixer, you may ask.
An agent is a fixer is someone who knows the right palms to grease to ease the process as you cross. Which is a lot more difficult and expensive when you are crossing with a vehicle.
You might get an unusual bout of diarrhea attack (especially if you’re trying out a lot of weird, new food, like the Jollof team is doing), a cold or a headache. Taking along some off-the-shelf medicines will save you the stress of trying to buy one at midnight, particularly in a country whose official language you don’t speak.
Pack just a few clothes and only the necessities. Extra clothes can always be bought on the road. And to me ‘necessities’ include medication.Tosin, Jollof Road Team Member.
Get A Translator:
Except you are multilingual and can speak most languages, you might wanna hire a translator to travel with you so you don’t have problems communicating or having the best experience in the foreign country. Or, maybe just try Google translator if that works best for you.
For Jollof Road, we have Tosin who speaks superb French. She’s made like extremely easy for the team
Grab A Camera Or Two:
Yeah, your phone camera will work but if you desire flawless images you should buy a camera, it doesn’t have to be a DSLR, unless you want it to be.
Pack as little as you can and pack a whole lot of gear. Two cameras, two mics, a drone, a couple of 18 terabyte hard drives and of course a drone because you can’t spend 80 days travelling through West Africa without a drone.Kayode, Jollof Road Team Member.
Have A Comfortable Wardrobe:
You’re going to need durable running shoes, easy clothes that don’t have so many trappings and can withstand the heat.
Take Care Of Your Skin:
Get sunscreen if you don’t wanna roast. Your favorite body and hair care products should always be with you. Oh and bug spray too, because the mosquitoes have upgraded their biting skills and you don’t them to ruin your trip.
Extra Cash Is Good, But Your Debit Card Is Better:
Having a bank account that allows you to withdraw cash whenever you need it is bae. Ecobank is your best bet for that, since they have branches in more than 30 African countries and you can use Ecobank Pay everywhere across West Africa. Whew what a relief.
Travel insurance is really vital. It saves you from thinking of the what-ifs. So, get a cover for medical, financial or any other oopsies that may happen while you are in another country. That’s why we’ve got our trusty Leadway Travel Insurance, to keep us rest assured.
Be Ready To Buy New SIM Cards:
The best way to stay in touch with those you left at home, and people you are going to meet in the foreign country is by buying a new SIM card that keeps you connected. Oh, and a broadband plan to get you online, because you’d be wanting to keep your peeps abreast of your travel experience, like the Jollof Team has been doing.
Follow us on the Jollof Road! In addition to our website and social channels: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Youtube, which you should totally subscribe to and follow, we now have a Telegram channel. The best part about this channel is that it’s going to have all the bits of gist, photos and information that don’t make our daily journals and videos. You can join the channel here. Tell someone to join too!