Check with ALL the airlines you're travelling on:

On my flights I can take 3 x 23kg bags as far as Santiago!! BUT, once I change to a local airline, I'm only allowed 2 x 23kg bags... Basically I have to fit everything into 2 x 23kg bags! Can I do it?

I've been collecting gear for Antarctica for over 7 years!! I bought an ice-rated regulator when I first hoped to travel and it's been sitting on the shelf ever since!! Shiny and new, it's finally going to get properly dunked in the cold waters it was designed for.

How did I start the packing process?

Firstly I made a list, split into sections;

  • Dive Gear
  • Dive Underwear/Thermals (they advise taking at least 2 sets)
  • General clothes
  • Jackets, gloves, glove liners & beanies etc
  • Boots/footwear (rubber boots are supplied on the ship)
  • Camera gear
  • Final checklist - passport / paperwork / transfers etc

Then I got everything out and laid it all on the bed in piles (there was a lot!).
Dive and camera gear are not optional and so, when I needed to reduce weight (& I did!) it was in general clothing, shoes and toiletries areas.
I did a first general pack ... here it is in fast motion :-)

In the end, because the dive equipment is so bulky, I needed to use large bags with less in each bag to be able to distribute the weight effectively.

The final baggage for my Antarctic trip - absolutely on the limit, easier to take two larger bags.

Lesson: I travelled down to Sydney prior to flying, I did a weight check with ALL by thermal underwear, 10mm hood and dry gloves BUT in the process I forgot the extra bolts for the backplate which enables me to remove the weight bar!!

More importantly, I left it too late to pick some up ... it meant I had an additional 4kg in my bags which I really didn't need. Ho Hum!
Annoying, because it left me almost no wriggle room on the baggage allowance front.