Answers to our Questionnaire for Visitors of Solomon Islands

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Visitor
Sex? male
Profession/occupation? Medical Student
Medical school year or years of experience since graduation? 4
Home country? United Kingdom
What made you want to go to Solomon Islands? browsing the web
Did you go alone or in company? alone
Arriving in Solomon Islands
When did you arrive in Solomon Islands? August 2013
Did you encounter any bureaucratic difficulties? no
What was your first impression after arrival? Paradise and very hot!
Living in Solomon Islands
What did positively surprise you? Everyone was very kind and welcoming.
What did negatively surprise you? I could not use the beach in Honiara.
What took longest to get used to? The heat.
What did you miss most in Solomon Islands? Family and friends.
What should you have brought along? My laptop loaded with movies.
What did you do to prevent malaria? Doxycyclin and mosquito net.
Place and province where you spent most of your time? Honiara, Honiara City
Other places/provinces where you stayed? -
Where did you stay? Jubilee House NRH
How long did you stay at each location? 7 weeks
How much did you pay for each? SBD 50/night
Where did you usually eat? We cooked and Fridays were out in the local hotel restaurants.
What did you typically pay for a normal meal? SBD 60-150/meal
What local food/beverage did you like most? Fruit and veg from the Central Market.
What local food/beverage did you like least? Brown tuna,actually, I haven't even tried it.
Mobile phone services
If you brought along a mobile phone, which services did you successfully use? -
Comments? European SIM cards don't work here.
Money matters
Used Travellers Cheques issued by American Express in AUD to get cash.
Used a debit card issued by HSBC and NatWest to get cash at ATMs and pay for goods and services.
Used a credit card issued by HSBC to get cash.
Comments? You only need your debit/credit cards! The best conversion rate is on using debit/credit cards!
Working in Solomon Islands
How did you usually go to work? walk (Just next to the house.)
Where did you work? NRH, labour ward
What was your occupation? Medical Student
What were your working days and hours? Monday-Friday 8am-4pm but sometimes till late or nights. It's up to you how much you want to work.
What was particularly difficult in regard to your work? Delivering the first still birth because I have never experienced it in the UK before.
Did you feel accepted by the locals? yes
What did you usually do in your spare time after work? Town walks, beach, island trips, waterfall walk,... There is tuns of things to do!
Questions for medical trainees of all levels (students to registrars)
How was the supervision? adequate
Comments As much as I needed.
How was the teaching? very good
Comments The midwives and nurses taught me everything they knew.
Leaving Solomon Islands and looking back
When did you leave Solomon Islands? October 2013
How long was your stay? 7 weeks
How do you judge the length of your stay? just about right
What did you learn from the locals? Smile, be positive, love your friends and family and take it easy.
Your advice to prospective visitors? Get involved, be open-minded and enjoy it!
What did you miss most when back at home again? Nobody smiled at me on the street, nobody said hi and there is no Central Market!
What did you enjoy most when back at home again? Seeing my family and friends.
Would you go back for another stay? Anytime!
Estimated total cost of your stay (including travel costs)? GBP 2,000
Additional comments? This was the best experience of my life! I would return anytime because everyone in the Solomons was so kind and carrying. As a medical student, I had the opportunity to learn new skills and be hands-on. I felt I was a valued team member and had a great time. Tank yu tumas!

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