Packing list for Zambia

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This list has been compiled by Volunteers serving in Zambia and is based on their experience. Use it as an informal guide in making your own list, bearing in mind that experience is individual. There is no perfect list! You can always have things sent to you later. You obviously cannot bring everything we mention, so consider those items that make the most sense to you personally and professionally. As you decide what to bring, keep in mind that you have an 80pound weight restriction on baggage. Pack things that will

help you to be content at your post. Used clothes markets or salualas (places to “rummage through piles”) are plentiful here and most Volunteers shop for clothing here or have items made. All projects require a great deal of field work, so bring clothes that can get dirty. You will be attending office meetings with counterparts, so a pair or two of easy-care slacks and appropriate shirts are necessary. For women, skirts must not be shorter than the knee; blouses and dresses need to be modest. Slips need to be worn.

Lastly, keep in mind that you can get almost everything you need in Zambia.


General Clothing

Men should bring nice pants and a button-up shirt and at least one jacket and tie for meeting government officials or to attend important meetings or functions. Women should bring shirts with collars and short sleeves, 1–2 dresses and 3–4 skirts of cotton/polyester at or below the knee (not sleeveless, low-cut or revealing) and an outfit for meetings or official functions.


Note: Volunteers with large feet may have a hard time finding shoes that fit in Zambia.

Personal Hygiene and Toiletry Items

Unless you have favorite brands you can’t do without, you should be able to buy what you need in Lusaka and provincial capitals. These include cosmetics, soap, toothpaste, general cleaning products and deodorants, hair conditioner, good razors and razor blades, Q-tips, and hair-care products. Bring only enough to get you through training. Peace Corps provides brand-name tampons; bring only enough for training.


The following are general items you may wish to have but you will need to prioritize and choose for yourself. Remember that it is a composite list; for each person perhaps only a few items will be critical:

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