Subscribe to SmallPlanet

We Need Your Help

Five stars on Amazon! Don't miss Talesmag's first book of essays, on cross-cultural food experiences from Mexico to Mongolia (plus recipes!)
Submit a Real Post Report


What household or grocery items do you wish you had shipped to post?

To keep cost down, try to stick to getting perishables locally and shipping in other items in bulk. Plan to bring most of your liquids (cleaning products, shampoo/conditioner, baby products, etc) and all medications with you. Wish we brought: salsa, salad dressing, condiments, beer (lots of wine locally but not a great selection of beer). - Dec 21, 2017
I had most things that I love shipped to post to me. It's the only way to survive in this place. - Dec 4, 2017
Lysol cleaning liquid, laundry soap, lemon oil for wood, windex, pine nuts, nut milk bags and nuts to make nut milk, coffee beans, beans (black, and white are locally available, red and pinto are rarely found), peanut butter, mexican food makings, specialty flours, disinfectant wipes for home and travel, hand sanitizer, more bug spray, sunscreen (not available here!).

Hairspray, shampoo, conditioner, lotion, sunscreen, face wash, nail polish remover. More games/puzzles/crafts. Craft beer or cider. Weirdly, ice cube trays and bins; locally not readily available and ice is at a premium. More ziploc baggies, bug proof pantry storage bins, ant bait, roach killer, bug zapper lights for outside, tikki torches and citronella oil for the pool, the list could go on. Fortunately most things are available via Amazon or whatever. Focus your consumables (if you get them) on liquids you can't live without. This doesn't really go here but I will include it anyway: BRING A SPARE SET OF TIRES (4 or better 5) FOR YOUR CAR!!! - Mar 2, 2017

Craft beer, soy sauce (only available in tiny bottles), bread flour, coffee beans. - Jan 21, 2017
We shipped the standard stuff for a consumable post -- a lot of olive oil; bags of Costco dried fruits, nuts, quinoa. We ordered a lot on line -- the DPO was great. My pantry got infested by mealy moths, so I learned that if I couldn't store dry goods in the freezer, I had to use them or not buy them. - Sep 26, 2016
More salsa, a UPS for power outages, that's pretty much it. - Apr 26, 2016
Paper goods and bug repellent, primarily. With DPO, it is very easy to order necessities online and have them shipped if you can't find them locally or they are simply too expensive. - Jan 6, 2014
I would have maxed out the consumables shipment on toilet paper, napkins, paper towels, and other paper products. Anything in the toiletry, hygiene, paper products category here is much more expensive and quality is weak. - Nov 24, 2012
More consumables, things like olive oil and other staples. - Feb 13, 2012
Skin-so-soft. - Nov 13, 2011
Diapers, not because they are not available, but because they are so expensive. In fact, just about anything is more expensive here, so when on holidays leave with empty suitcases and return with full ones - Aug 4, 2011
Get used to,, walmart/target/sears/ Things here are expensive, not always in stock, not the quality you may used to. If you have access to DPO, most of your stuff is bought on line and shipped. It is cheaper and easier than getting it locally. Good local produce, let the house staff purchase it. As the prices will go up quite a bit if you are not a Congo local. Stock up on the favorite things and ship in HHE. But, be forewarned, your HHE and/or UAB can be held in customs for several weeks or a few months. This is an on-going problem in DRC, people are working towards a solution. But, DRC is a cash country and everyone has their hand out for a little something. If I knew then, what I know now – I would have not brought so much stuff in advance, only to have it sit in Customs for a few months. I would have had the ‘favorites’ shipped to the DPO address and used the on-line shopping for everything else. Car parts, tires, favorite comfort food. - Jan 19, 2011
i haven't missed anything in particular. - Oct 16, 2010
Lots of mosquito repellant & sunscreen; more canned food than I shipped originally. - Jan 21, 2009