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What to Bring

Visitors to ITFC are advised to bring the following for a comfortable stay:

  • Warm clothes (sometimes temperature drops to 5 degrees C in the night): even consider bringing a woolly hat and gloves! In the wet season, clothes do not dry quickly, so bring several shirts, trousers and socks
  • Hiking shoes or gumboots with good profile; the slopes are steep

  • Rain gear

  • Flashlight

  • First Aid kit

  • Any special medication (only basic ones are available locally)

  • Insect repellent

  • Water bottle

  • Mobile phone (reception of AirtelMTNAfricell )

Students, interns and volunteers may want to bring in addition:

  • your own sleeping bag and towels (ITFC provides bed sheets, pillows and blankets).

  • your own daypack

  • your own essential field equipment, as ITFC has a limited supply; discuss this well in advance.

  • if you own a laptop, please bring it to make sure you always have access to a computer (the institute has a limited number). NOTE: students can only access the internet through an ITFC laptop specially made available in the library.

  • entertainment: music, DVDs, games, books (some 200 novels  left behind by earlier students are also available), table tennis badge and balls (there is a table in the student dorm).

  • radio; several local stations reach Ruhija, as well as BBC-on-FM and on shortwave

  • more than one SIM card, as Airtel, ORANGE, MTN and AIRTEL networks are present, but patchy

  • (esp. for foreign students) you are advised to bring your own tent and sleeping mat


Food items that are usually available in the nearby village Ruhija are posho, potatoes, flour, sugar, tea leaves, eggs, sodas and beers and a seasonally varying selection of vegetables (onions, tomatoes, "dodo", avocadoes, cabbage).

Basic fieldwork food can be supplied by ITFC (count on about 5,300 UGX per person per day). Other food items are available in the nearest town, Kabale. The Royal supermarket has a wide range, including coffee, breakfast cereals, cheese, butter, rice, canned vegetables, jam/honey and snacks. But transport to Kabale is erratic.


In most larger Ugandan towns you can draw money from ATMs with a credit card. If you bring cash (as well), beware that denominations under 50 U$ are not accepted, nor are any notes from before 2003. From ITFC, the nearest banks and ATMs (Barclay's, Stanbic) are in Kabale, some 2 hours away from the station. Long term visitors and researchers may request to make payments to ITFC by transfer, in U$ or UGX