Have you ever seen 'self-catering' on a resort's website and felt mortified at the thought of what equipment and items await your arrival?
Well, these tips are here to help you avoid those dreaded self-catering nightmares.
From kitchen necessities like milk and sugar to ensuring your braai stays fresh and flavourful.
There are also some boredom-saving tips as well as ways to scrub away the worries.
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Whether you're going for a night or two or a full on two week vacation to a self-catering resort - these are 10 things every traveller needs when venturing off into the unknown realm of subjective 'self-catering' establishments.
Some places provide more than enough supplies to ensure your self-catering experience is smooth, while others assume that your independent traveller self will bring everything - other than a handful of staple appliances - you need to seamlessly get through you break.
With the long weekend coming up these tips are sure to keep you sane in the self-catering game.
1. Take extra cutlery, crockery & tea towels
Not all places have enough of these and the knives may not be sharp enough for your cooking wit!
Pro tip: Save some space and keep things safe by rolling up your cutlery and fragile crockery in your tea towels.
2. Cereal, caffeine & milk
You may not need to bring all of your groceries as there most likely is a store at the resort or en route to it – but pack in: extra coffee or tea – in case the complimentary ones don’t pack the same punch as your regular cuppa Joe, some milk (especially if you have a dietary preference) and a box of cereal (especially if travelling with kids -it is lightweight and cheaper to bring your own).
3. Sugar & Spice
Bring the flavour with you to be safe. Pack in some salt, pepper, sugar and whatever other spices you need to ensure your food is as flavourful as usual.
Pro tip: To save space pack enough of each in individual small zip lock packets or pouches.
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4. Sizzling metal: bring a frying pan and kettle
Ask the resort what equipment is available – you might get a frying pan and electric kettle – but the former isn’t always the best and the latter isn’t always guaranteed.
5. Some dish soap & a sponge
Bring along some dish soap and a sponge to help soak up and scrub away your worries about self-catering trips - and to also avoid potentially not having them on hand at a resort or having to use the dreaded resort metal sponge...
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6. Pack these items in a box crate
A large plastic crate is solid - it also prevents breakages, and if one were to happen, it helps contain the mess and not spread it all over your car or clothing luggage. It is also quite easy to load into the car.
7. BYOBG - Bring your own braai grid
If you’re from SA or merely love a good braai, bringing your own braai grid is essential. If there is a braai spot and grid provided it’s not always in pristine or the best condition. Avoid having your braai vibe ruined and your food seasoned by the ghosts of braais past on a crusty complimentary grid. we suggest you bring your own.
8. Toilet paper will save you later
Not every place will provide enough toilet paper rolls and may only restock once a day - it's always best to pack in a few extra to avoid any crappy situations.
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9. First aid kit in case you get hit
Always have a first aid kit on hand when travelling in case of an injury, unforeseen illness or lurking bugs ready to bite. Make sure you've got some band aids, pain meds, flu meds, mozzie repellents and disinfectant cream for any cuts.
10. Don't get board, pack in some games
Not all places will have TV, DSTV or wifi to keep you entertained. Pack in some board games, dominoes, cards, a good book you've been putting off and some adaptable phone speakers. Don't forget a powerbank and two point plug - to charge the digi-entertainment. These are sure to keep you and your family entertained while indoors.
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