samuelsski27

Best power options on a safari?

16 posts in this topic

Hi all,

 

I'm going on a Christmas safari trip to Tanzania and haven't really seen any solid plans on bringing power adapters from the US. I imagine as a photographer, I'll need to bring some combination of travel adapters for my camera batteries, laptop, phone, etc etc. I've heard of using an adaptor/converter to a power strip, but have heard of issues if the power strip would be an effective converter. Can anyone enlighten me on what they did traveling from the US? I'd really appreciate if you linked specific products that anyone has used (without being insanely expensive). Thanks!

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Posted (edited)

Hi, welcome to the forum. 

 

The subject of adapters are near and dear to my heart and in one trip report I even wrote an ode in haiku form to an adapter.  For Tanzania you want the G-type adapter.    You can see the prongs are not round and are rectangle.  You can also see the middle prong is longer than the other two.

 

  You do not need a converter for any modern electrical device because these devises accept a wide range of inputs.  Power strips I have encountered on safari are configured for the country I am visiting.  The camp or lodge provides the power strip and it plugs into the outlet.  Both powerstrip and outlet are configured for the country I am visiting.  Then I must use my adapter to plug into one of the several outlets in the powerstrip, so that I can plug my device into the back side of the adapter and charge.

 

I take 3 adapters in case something happens to one (or very unlikely two).  I also take 2-3 battery chargers for the same reason.  On safari you cannot replace your sundries.

 

If you might charge in the vehicle, a rubber band is handy as shown.  Even duck tape, also as shown.  These are needed because it can be very bouncy in the vehicle and you don't want your adapter and battery charger to fall out/off.

 

You have gotten way more than you bargained for regarding the adapter.

 

gallery_108_1525_594323.jpg

 

 

G plug adapter.jpg

The orange configuration shown is in the vehicle but it is the same configuration for all Tanzanian outlets that I have ever encountered over many trips, whether in the vehicle or in the wall.

 

I bought these adapters online, not expensive.  Charging camera batteries is not a big deal at any reputable camp or lodge.  If you will be extremely remote without the ability to charge (like a canoe safari or similar)  that would be known in advance. 

 

Your avatar suggests this may be a honeymoon.  Have a great one.

Edited by Atravelynn

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My husband is a power bank junkie, so for Christmas I ordered an OmniCharge for him and then took it along on my trip to Kenya.  

https://www.omnicharge.co/

 

I was traveling with a friend and our daughters, and the power bank came in very handy when phones were low (especially handy with two teenagers.) 

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Posted (edited)

@samuelsski27 Opportunities to charge in camp may be limited - all the guests and staff are sharing few outlets. Additionally some camps do not have power 24/7. In Kenya the vehicles had charging sockets as above but they were not functional. I agree take a few adaptors as shown by @Atravelynn but I wouldn't bother with a power strip. Not sure what camera you use but the batteries for my Nikon will last for close to 1000 shots so a couple of spares will cover a few days.

I try and escape from my phone on safari so not much need to charge that but as @AmyT says a powerbank is helpful (although mine seem to take an age to charge up).

Edited by pomkiwi
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2 minutes ago, pomkiwi said:

@samuelsski27 Opportunities to charge in camp may be limited - all the guests and staff are sharing few outlets. Additionally some camps do not have power 24/7. In Kenya the vehicles had charging sockets as above but they were not functional.

 

For these reasons I take 4-6 batteries and keep them charged.  There's nothing worse than fretting over your battery power when you should be enjoying what's out there.

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I have not been on safari yet, but I do a fair amount of international travel and have been using the Mogics Bagel (http://www.mogics.com/?page_id=3824) for the past year.  It is very small and lightweight, works on international voltage, and comes with a built in universal plug adapter.  The adapter is a little flimsy, though, so I do bring spares specific to the countries I am going to.  What I really like about it is that it has the capacity to charge up to seven devices at a time (5 plugs plus 2 USB).

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I'm going to Tanzania in 9 days.  I bought a Conair Travel Smart adapter.  You can plug in two chargers and a USB at the same time.  It seems odd that one of the three prongs for use in GB and Africa has a plastic prong.  I'm not sure what function that would serve.  I'll report back as to how well this worked for me.

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The larger prong on the UK/Africa plug is for the earth/ground connection. Most appliances/countries don't use this (and use 2 pin plugs). Many UK style sockets however have a safety shield that depends on the large prong to move it away which is why it is there even if it has no electrical function.

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Thanks.  I knew there was a reasonable explanation for that third prong.

 

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I don't have the luxury of any mains / generator power during my 8 day forays into the bush, so I have one of these to charge the camera batteries from.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/DBPOWER-18000mAh-Portable-Emergency-Flashlight-DJS50-Black-Yellow/dp/B01BF08HGC/ref=sr_1_15?ie=UTF8&qid=1505479806&sr=8-15&keywords=powerbank+jump+start

 

The occasion hasn't arisen yet,, but will also jump start the vehicle in the event of a flat battery.

 

I get a bit of power back into the power-bank during the day with a small solar panel.

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@Whyone? Remember you need to take it in your hand luggage and not checked luggage.

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yes the plug adapter and charger   goes by hand luggage

 

it does not work well so take a small bottle of eucalyptus oil, surgical spirit etc in checked luggage

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@COSMIC RHINO   

6 hours ago, COSMIC RHINO said:

 

it does not work well so take a small bottle of eucalyptus oil, surgical spirit etc in checked luggage

 

I am a bit confused........ What is the purpose of the Eucalyptus oil/Surgical spirit in this context?

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eucalyptus oil is superb for removing dust

 

dust and power charging is a very poor mix

 

just put a bit onto cotton wool and the dust comes of, then the battery charger  speeds up a lot  

Edited by COSMIC RHINO
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On 19/09/2017 at 10:53 AM, COSMIC RHINO said:

eucalyptus oil is superb for removing dust

 

dust and power charging is a very poor mix

 

just put a bit onto cotton wool and the dust comes of, then the battery charger  speeds up a lot  

I would advise some caution on the use of eucalyptus oil - whist I daresay it is effective in cleaning dust from electrical contacts, it can have a degrading effect on plastics.

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Posted (edited)

I use a commercially sold 40% solution, most of it is purified water and it removes dust wonderfully

 

even at this concentration if removes the dirt and dries almost immediately

Edited by COSMIC RHINO

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