Archive for May, 2010

Preparing for another travel adventure

Posted on: May 20th, 2010 | No Comments

It’s time to head to Africa again. How to prepare? I pack following the advice in my post on 4 May and consider getting the right information critically important step. Surfing with your favorite search engine is a good way to start. I avoid most government sites (which are usually out-of-date or generally not helpful) and have found these sites worth regular use:

Basic facts: www.worldinformation.com and www.nationsonline.org/oneworld

Connections and travel info: www.lonelyplanet.com and www.matadortravel.com

Political and other background: www.hrw.org and www.countryrisk.com

The development and humanitarian situation: www.reliefweb.int and www.alertnet.org

Currency conversions: www.oanda.com

I also spend considerable time checking out maps.  Several of the sites above have map sections and Google earth is very helpful once you have a general idea where you are traveling.

Neverest Travel Tip #2

Posted on: May 12th, 2010 | No Comments

Beware of cell phone “roaming rates.” It is almost always less expensive to buy a secondhand local cell phone (for often less than $20) and outfit it with a local SIM card. Frequent travelers often stick with the GSM system and buy new SIM cards wherever they go. Keep them organized with Neverest’s SIM Card Holder.

Thank you Relief International, twice!

Posted on: May 8th, 2010 | No Comments

There are too few organizations that make meaningful contributions to assist the world’s worst off people. Relief International (RI) is one of those that make’s a real difference. Based in Los Angeles, RI has an operational presence in 17 countries. Their motto is “Saving Lives, Rebuilding Livelihoods.” They assist in numerous ways such as sheltering disaster victims, providing clean water to refugees and providing loans to the disadvantaged. 

Their management also understands that it is important to “help the helpers.” They recently placed an order so that each of their international relief staff would be equipped with a Neverest’s Essential Journey’s Kit. Thank you RI!

How the Pros Pack

Posted on: May 4th, 2010 | No Comments

In the last twelve months, I’ve traveled to – and spent chunks of time in – more than a dozen countries and many of the most challenging places on earth such as Iraq and Zimbabwe (if you’ve been following this blog, you already know about my travels to Afghanistan, Haiti and Sudan). This is not to mention all the great places in between including San Francisco, Hong Kong and London.

On these trips, I’ve really had to be prepared. Just as when dressing for cold weather layers are best, the pros approach packing for their next adventure by thinking in three layers:

Layer 1 – Pockets: Here, important items of immediate need such as identification, travel documents and money and, depending on the circumstance, pen, paper, matches, multi-tool with blade and even a whistle. All these later items are found in Neverest’s Essential Journey’s Kit and Neverest’s On-the-Go items also help keep you organized while traveling.

Layer 2 – Belt/Shoulder bag/Vest: These items should help a person a day or more without support such as water, a bit of food and maybe sunglasses. Depending on the environment and challenges faced, items such as first-aid supplies, a compass, scissors and a bandana are also important. The Essential Journey’s Kit has many of these items and has features which allow it to be worn on a belt or, using a strap, hung over a shoulder.

Layer 3 – Backpack/Luggage: Everything else can be included here such as appropriate clothing, extra food and water, and all those items that help make travel easier and more enjoyable. When there is not an immediate need, the Essential Journey’s Kit is still small enough to be included on any trip.