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Duffle bags for safari

Duffle bags for safari

Old May 30, 19, 1:10 pm
  #1  
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Duffle bags for safari

We are on a 10 cruise out of Cape Town, then fly to Johannesburg and transfer to a small jet to Kruger area.
We spend 4 nights then fly back to Johannesburg and up to Victoria Falls for two nights, returning to Johannesburg overnight before flying back to NA.
Any advise on a duffle as the size and style they listed I have read here can not be checked for Johannesburg, so we are confused.
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Old Jun 2, 19, 11:52 am
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Do you know which airlines the various flights are on?
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Old Jun 2, 19, 12:10 pm
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Originally Posted by LillianJ View Post
Any advise on a duffle as the size and style they listed I have read here can not be checked for Johannesburg, so we are confused.
Your question is a bit vague. Who exactly is "they" and what have "they" listed?

When I flew JNB-MQP I was onboard an ATR 42; not exactly a large airplane but not a particularly small one either. I took a normal sized suitcase (32kg or so) and checked it through normally.

In Namibia & Botswana however, I know that many air transfers involve Cessna aircraft of various sizes, typically from 5 pax to 12 pax. Obviously on something this small, size & weight make a pretty big difference. So on these aircraft, pax are strictly limited to just a few kg of luggage (typically 10 to 20 kg) to be carried in soft-sided duffles.

My sense is that the size of the duffle is only part of the equation; the weight of the stuff is more a limiting factor. The duffle (as opposed to suitcase) is more so that the bag can be squished into a small cargo space. The cargo space on some of these Cessnas are only 25 - 30cm high so something rigid like a suitcase has no chance of fitting in there.

So it really depends on where you're going and who you're going with.

Here are a couple of links that may be informative:

https://www.places.co.za/html/luggag...-botswana.html
https://www.wilderness-air.com/our-aircraft/
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Old Jun 2, 19, 12:20 pm
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If youre returning to JNB before continuing onward, Id leave your larger bag at the hotel and just bring a smaller duffel for the safari portion of the trip. We used LL Bean duffels without issue last year - lightweight and durable.
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Old Jun 4, 19, 8:18 am
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Look at www.redoxx.com they have several bags they sell with an emphasis on safaris.
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Old Jun 10, 19, 7:57 am
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We are a group of 16 and chartered a small jet to go to several areas. We were told no more than 30 lbs and bag can not have wheels or any kind of metal inside. So basically they want like a duffle or floppy bag.
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Old Jun 25, 19, 3:22 pm
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Since now the OR Tambo airport does not allow you to check soft bags we ask our Safari company about wheeled bottom and they said ok
It is a small jet operated by Federal.
So we want to store the one suitcase from cruise and take one wheeled duffle.
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Old Jun 29, 19, 1:38 am
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Glad your safari company was accommodating.

The (frustrating) new baggage rules at JNB do allow soft bags that have been wrapped at the airport. So that is one option for duffles, I guess.
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Old Jun 29, 19, 6:06 am
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Just a data point, we were checking on for a SA Airlink flight from JNB to SZK. I asked the agent checking us in about being able to check in totally soft sided duffle type bags and JNB and she indicated that there was no such restriction. I have no idea if this accurately reflects JNB policy on duffles or not so YMMV.

We had regular luggage so it was no issue for us.
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Old Jul 4, 19, 12:26 am
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Originally Posted by cheltzel View Post
Just a data point, we were checking on for a SA Airlink flight from JNB to SZK. I asked the agent checking us in about being able to check in totally soft sided duffle type bags and JNB and she indicated that there was no such restriction. I have no idea if this accurately reflects JNB policy on duffles or not so YMMV.

We had regular luggage so it was no issue for us.
Data point #2 - Departing out of SZK and returning to JNB. There was a laminated card glued to the check in counter about the type of bags accepted. Totally soft duffles were highlighted as being not acceptable.

Asked the SAA Airlink agent about it and she was adamant that they were not accepted. So much for consistency.

Last edited by cheltzel; Jul 4, 19 at 1:03 am
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Old Jul 5, 19, 9:30 am
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Since we are not at a hotel before departing on the Federal Jet to Singita property, we either have to store luggage at airport ( not sure we will have time between flights as you fly domestic from Cape Town) or pay hotel we will return to, to pick up luggage from us and store at hotel.
This could be costly and tough to co ordinate so any suggestions I am listening.
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Old Jul 5, 19, 4:41 pm
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Originally Posted by LillianJ View Post
Since we are not at a hotel before departing on the Federal Jet to Singita property, we either have to store luggage at airport ( not sure we will have time between flights as you fly domestic from Cape Town) or pay hotel we will return to, to pick up luggage from us and store at hotel.
This could be costly and tough to co ordinate so any suggestions I am listening.
Are you returning to JNB on Federal Airlines as well? They will store bags for you if you are returning to JNB with them. They pick you up at JNB's main terminals in a van with a luggage trailer to drive over to their small terminal. It is a separate building and they have a large lounge/waiting area where you can reorganize your baggage. Their website is really informative and be in touch with them if you have more questions or want to confirm where they will meet you. I found their staff to be very helpful.
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Old Jul 8, 19, 3:53 am
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Originally Posted by cheltzel View Post
Data point #2 - Departing out of SZK and returning to JNB. There was a laminated card glued to the check in counter about the type of bags accepted. Totally soft duffles were highlighted as being not acceptable.

Asked the SAA Airlink agent about it and she was adamant that they were not accepted. So much for consistency.
Well that is confusing.

I thought this was only an OR Tambo restriction? Or does it cover all flights into JNB as well?
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Old Jul 8, 19, 7:04 am
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Originally Posted by Cheetah_SA View Post
Well that is confusing.

I thought this was only an OR Tambo restriction? Or does it cover all flights into JNB as well?
To be honest, I have no idea. I have regular luggage and was booked on SA Airlink which allows luggage beyond a totally soft sided duffle.

This seems to be an issue with the automated baggage handling issue at OR Tambo (or at least that is what everyone is talking about). And the totally soft sided baggage requirement seems to be specifically are FedAir requirement (link). I looked at the SA Loge Link web site and it doesn't seem to have the issue with all soft sided luggage. But the SA Lodge Link site does not have a specific baggage requirements page and directs you to the main SA AirLink baggage page for its restriction. And I have never flown either FedAir or Lodge Link, so YMMV.
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Old Jul 13, 19, 3:56 pm
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Very helpful

Originally Posted by theteachertourist View Post
Are you returning to JNB on Federal Airlines as well? They will store bags for you if you are returning to JNB with them. They pick you up at JNB's main terminals in a van with a luggage trailer to drive over to their small terminal. It is a separate building and they have a large lounge/waiting area where you can reorganize your baggage. Their website is really informative and be in touch with them if you have more questions or want to confirm where they will meet you. I found their staff to be very helpful.
We are using a tour company and do not think we return with Federal as I was told that our flight to Livingstone departs from Nelespurt and then we return to OR Tambo from Livingstone Three days later. So I am not sure who they have booked us on.
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