What to Expect
Africa Mercy: Staying in Touch
Telephones: The Africa Mercy has a US based satellite phone system. The phone number on board is +001 (954) 538 6110. Those calling from the US do not need to dial the country code. Personal calls can be made from cabins but are restricted to US toll free phone numbers (i.e. 1-800 or 1-888). A phone card will be necessary to call non toll-free numbers. These are available in the Ship Shop. Mobile/cell phones may be brought with you, but check with your service provider for network coverage/availability.
Email and Internet: The Africa Mercy is equipped with an Internet Café. You are welcome to bring your own laptop computer as each cabin has one network socket (RJ45, cables also for sale in the ship shop) for connection to the internet. We also have wireless access points in several areas of the ship. That being said, you might consider bringing a long cable (10 - 15 foot / 3-4.5 meter) so that you can access this socket from your own space in your cabin.
Please note, Internet connection can be very slow so please discourage friends and family from sending large attachments. Large downloads, Skype & Web Cams and streaming video are not allowed.
Mail: Letters, packages, etc will be forwarded regularly to the ship. Please advise your family and friends that it could take several weeks for mail to reach you in West Africa. If you are sent packages (or anything over 1 ounce), you will be charged $8.80/ pound ($0.55 per ounce or 28.4g). US and UK stamps are available on board and crew returning home to these countries are often asked to carry mail back with them to be posted.
To receive personal mail, have your letters mailed to the International Operations Center (IOC), Holland or UK office.
Mercy Ships IOC
M/V Africa Mercy – Name of Dept.
PO Box 2020, Lindale, TX
MS Holland – Mercy Ships
M/V Africa Mercy – Name of Dept.
3083 AS Rotterdam, Netherlands
+31 10 410 2877
MERCY SHIPS HAZARDOUS MATERIALS WATCH
Packages received by Mercy Ships will need a detailed list of all content on the outside of each package. Packages that do not list content are subject to inspection and/or refusal of shipment based on a suspected hazardous condition. Materials will be removed and disposed of; crew members involved will be notified of the disposition. Mercy Ships is subject to fines in excess of $250,000 if packages are not properly managed.
The following items are typically considered to be hazardous material; therefore, can not be shipped through or by any Mercy Ships department. Items, listed below do not represent a complete and exhaustive list, but only serve as a guideline to items that are typically classified hazardous.
Automotive products - oils, anti-freeze, fuel, brake fluid, windshield washer fluid, transmission fluids, corrosives, toxics, flammable liquid of any type, combustibles, auto batteries, etc. Household materials - bleach, ammonia, disinfectants, carpet fresheners, air fresheners, window cleaner, furniture polish, bug spray, roach & ant killer, mothballs, flea collars, drain openers, rug & upholstery cleaners, etc. Laundry products - laundry detergent, fabric softener, etc. Health and beauty products - hairspray, hair remover, fingernail polish, fingernail polish remover, hair coloring products, medications, aerosols, compressed gas of any type, waterless hand-cleaner, deodorants/perfumes, etc. Lawn and garden products - fertilizer, pesticides, herbicides, gasoline, oil, etc. Barbecue products - propane, charcoal briquettes, lighter fluid, etc. Home/Workshop maintenance - paint, varnish, stains, oils, mouse/rat poison, enamels, paint thinners, varnishes, enamels, batteries of all types (DC & AC), etc.