TANZANIA SERENGETI ADVENTURE IMPORTANT INFORMATION
The information in this trip details document has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However, it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. It may differ slightly to the one in initially sent to you. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience.
VERY IMPORTANT: Please ensure that you print a final copy of your Final Bulletin to review a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans.
What is my visa requirements?
Although most nationalities can obtain a visa upon arrival in Tanzania, it is the sole responsibility of every traveller to be in possession of all required documents and passport valid more than 6 months for any travel into Tanzania. We therefore strongly suggest that you contact your respective embassy for the latest visa regulations just as soon as you book your trip to know whether you can purchase Tourist visa upon arrival based on your nationality
All lodges and camps will have electricity although many work off generators with limited times.
The power supply in Tanzania is nominally 240VAC, 50hz. Variable voltage, spikes and sporadic, unexpected, unscheduled power cuts of varying duration can be expected.
Please note that this trip is a combination of multiple or mixed safari with extensions As such, the staff and/or particular vehicles operating your tour may change between tour segments. You may also expect some group members to join or leave the tour, between tour segments.
Please note all accommodation listed is not guaranteed, but is indicative of the types of accommodation used, we may be forced to change accommodation based on lodges availabilities.
These meals are provided at the hotels, lodges and camps in which you are accommodated. When a meal is not included, your hotel will have a restaurant or your will be advised of a good local establishment. All meals you have during your trip will be prepared from fresh local produce. All hotels cater to vegetarians; however, any other dietary requirements need to be specified prior to arrival. Please note all bottled drinking water will be at your own expense.
Drives and Transport
Drives are not physically demanding journey; however, travelling can be difficult, as long drives and poor road conditions are the rule as opposed to the exception in Tanzania. A safari is about travelling to see animals, so we cover long distances crossing the country to visit different game parks. Once there, we spend the majority of the time viewing game while driving in the parks. This translates to a lot of driving. Despite this, the diversity and scenery of the Tanzanian landscape, the local culture and abundant wildlife are all well worth the experience.
This trip is done in private 7-seat 4×4 safari vehicles in Tanzania. With sliding windows and a large pop-up roofs, these vehicles are designed for game viewing. If there is a large group, 2 vehicles will be used, and the group will be split up. Road conditions can run the full range of conditions from new to very poor, and during dry seasons, the roads can become very dusty. This style of travel is the best under the local circumstances, as the seats are comfortable and having our own private vehicle allow us the flexibility of making stops when needed, and to stay and watch that crouching lion prepare for an attack. If you are travelling to Nairobi from Arusha at the end of your safari and have pre-booked your “shuttle” transfer through TSA Adventures, you will travel in a public shuttle; these are large mini buses with seating for 22-24 passengers.
Speed governors set to 80kph are used on all vehicles to ensure a safe driving speed. Please note for your own safety it is mandatory to wear your seat belt at all times when in a vehicle.
All TSA vehicles are regularly serviced and follow a strict maintenance schedule. However, given the long travel days and rough conditions of many of the roads in Africa, vehicles can and do breakdown on occasion. If such situations occur all drivers are trained mechanics and any vehicle issues are rectified as quickly as possible so as to not disrupt your trip. Your patience is requested if the vehicle you are traveling in happens to encounter a mechanical fault.
We believe single travellers should not have to pay more to travel so our group trips are designed for shared accommodation if accepted by both thus not incurring a single supplement. Single travellers joining group trips are paired in twin or multi-share accommodation with someone of the same sex for the duration of the trip. Some of our Independent trips are designed differently and single travellers on these itineraries must pay the single trip price.
Please remember that hotel/lodge/camp standards can be different from what you are used to in your home country, which is part of the appeal of adventure travel.
- Under certain circumstances we reserve the right to change accommodation and provide something slightly different to what is described, though it will always be of similar or better standard/level.
- All lodges and camps are self contained with en suite bathrooms.
- All lodges and tented camps do not have 24hr electricity – they usually run on generators which are routinely shut off overnight from approximately 10pm to 5am.
- Internet is available at most accommodation during your safari and can be for a limited period of time.
- Lodges and camps are NOT equipped with fans or air conditioning due to the electricity constraints listed above.
**Please note, the arrival transfer included occurs on Day 1 of the tour. If you plan to arrive prior to Day 1, you will be required to arrange pre-tour accommodation through TSA Adventures to be eligible for the transport from the airport. Due to customer experience and quality considerations, all services related to the tour must be continuous.
TSA Adventures is only able to pick you up at the Kilimanjaro International Airport if you inform us in advance of your arrival flight’s details. If this has not been done, please make your way to the joining hotel. Kilimanjaro International Airport is approximately 40km, or 40 minutes, from Arusha. Taxis are available to transfer you to Arusha, and cost approximately USD 60 per car. From Nairobi, Kenya, Arusha is approximately 6 hours by land, including the border formalities. To arrive in Arusha from Nairobi by land, a seat on a public shuttle bus (leaves daily at 8am) can be pre-booked through TSA.
Otherwise, upon arrival at Kilimanjaro International Airport, please look for the driver, who will be holding a sign with the TSA name on it and one person’s name in the group stating the number of passengers arriving on the same flight in the group.
He will be just outside the secured baggage retrieval area. At times there are taxi drivers who will want to get your business, so please be aware of them and look for our TSA driver who he was picking up and if you are amongst the list introduce yourself, and you may have to wait for him to gather all his passengers before departing .
Please note that day 1 is an arrival day and most of the times no activities have been planned nor meals. We mostly try and brief you prior to your departure over skype. You may be brought to our office depending on whether it is a requirement.
Arrival Complications and delays
We don’t expect any problems, and nor should you, but if for any reason you are unable to commence your trip as scheduled, or your flight has delayed, call us on our telephone number as soon as possible
Should you need to contact us during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call either the TSA. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible.
EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS:
- +255 27 2544609
- +255 787 651124
- +255 688 116484
All travellers are expected to have personal evacuation and medical insurance, in the rare case of an emergency. We strongly recommend travel insurance to cover accidents, trip cancellations and interruptions, loss of baggage and travel documents, baggage delay, medical expenses and emergency assistance, illness/injury or death.
Emergency evacuation insurance can be purchased for USD 30 for the entire duration of your trip. We highly recommend you book this option if not already covered. Benefits include:
- 24 hours’ access to emergency response with Knight Support First Air Responder
- A dedicated Support Manager to be your link person
- Ambulance response to site of emergency
- Stabilization and relocation to nearest hospital or air ambulance
- 1 free Air evacuation within Tanzania
- 1 free Air evacuation to Kenya
Always keep all of your valuables with you at all times, these including: Passport, Money, Airline tickets, Cameras, Credit Cards, Travel and Medical Insurance. Valuables should not be left in hotel/lodge rooms or vehicles.
Safari RULES & photography customs
During game drives in the parks, safari guides are required to stay on official tracks and cannot drive off road except for designated areas allowed by the National Park authorities. You can take as many photographs as you like, however do not disturb the game by way of shouting to draw their attention, feeding them or throwing any items at them. Your safari guide will do all they can to give you the best views of the wildlife. The wildlife is unrestricted in their environment and can be dangerous. Therefore, do not get out of your vehicle unless your safari guide says it is safe to do so. In case you need to attend to the “call of nature,” ask your safari guide and when you get out of the vehicle make sure you stay in close proximity in case of any unexpected game. Littering is prohibited. All trash should be kept in the bags in your safari vehicle. Your safari guide will dispose of it responsibly.
It is not permitted to photograph the following: Airfield, Military Installation and Personnel, Police, Prisoners, Bridges and State House. You will require to pay a token for the privilege of photographing the indigenous Masaya people. To photograph locals, first request for their permission before taking any photos.
Remember, the safari guides have quite a bit of experience out there in the bush, so please take their advice and don’t hesitate to ask them on any uncertainties – “Akuna mutate!” – Hope there’s no need for a translation!
RECOMMENDED safari GEAR
Sun hat, sweater (for cold windy nights out in the wild – about 10o Celsius at Ngorongoro), waterproof/ wind proof anorak, light shorts and trousers, swim suit, personal toiletries, sandals/flip flops, casual shoes, safari boots, duffle bag, backpack, flashlight, sunglasses, anti-malaria tablets, sunscreen, money-belt, camera, insect repellant, wet wipes, hand sanitizer, travel smart adaptor (220V & UK plugs type are used in Tanzania.
As You will be on the move a lot, so our advice is to pack as lightly as possible. Your baggage should be clearly labelled and restricted to one soft compact suitcase, sports bag, or backpack, no larger than 30cm(height) x 30cm(width) x 60cm(length), maximum 15kg, plus a daypack. Luggage limits on airlines are strictly enforced, and due to limited vehicle capacity, the cost of transporting any luggage beyond these restrictions is the responsibility of the client. Please note, if you are travelling with a large amount of luggage and wish to leave a portion of it at the start hotel, this is indeed possible as storage facilities are available.
It is important to pack clothes for warm days and cool evenings, as well as a warm jacket for early morning game drives. Light, quick-drying, practical clothes are advisable for this safari trip. A set of smart casual clothes is also advisable for your time in Arusha.
- Insurance info
- Flight info
- Cash, credit and debit cards
- Vouchers and pre-departure information
- Required visas or vaccination certificates
- Yellow Fever certificate
- Fleece or wool jumper/jacket
- Windproof/waterproof jacket
- Small towel and swimwear
- 4 shirts/t-shirts, cool and breathable
- Long-sleeved shirt or sweater for evenings
- 1 pair of shorts
- 2 pairs of long trousers
- 1 pair hiking pants/track pants
- Comfortable shoes
- Sport sandals
- Sun hat, Bandana
- Watch or alarm clock
- First-aid kit (should contain Lip balm with sunscreen, Aspirin, Ibuprofen, Malaria pills, Band-Aids/plasters, tape, anti-histamine, Antiseptic cream, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhoea, rehydration powder, insect repellent, extra prescription drugs you may be taking)
- Toiletries (biodegradable)
- Toilet paper
- Day pack
- Camera with extra memory cards and batteries
- Personal Entertainment
- Waterproof backpack cover
- Outlet adapter
- Insect Repellent
- Money belt
- Antibacterial wipes/gel
- Reusable water bottle
- Water purification tablets or filter (optional)
Note: For those climbing Mount Kilimanjaro will get an extensive list of what to bring for the climb In their final bulletin.
Laundry facilities are offered by some of our hotels and lodges for a charge. You should write a list of items that you send for washing. It will be difficult for hotels to have your laundry ready if you arrive in the late afternoon and leave the next morning, so the lodge in the Serengeti would be best, since you are there for 2 nights.
All countries require travellers to have a valid passport (with a minimum 6 months’ validity). Please note that upon arrival by air to Arusha, Tanzania, most nationals can obtain a visa for US$50 in $US cash (valid for those who would be permitted a Tanzania visa while still in their own country), though it costs US$100 for U.S. nationals. This visa is valid for up to 3 months with multiple entries/exits permitted to Kenya and Uganda only. If you are transiting through Uganda or Kenya, you will have to purchase a transit visa en route. These are usually $US20, and valid for 24 hours. Alternatively, for either of these two countries, you may purchase a normal visa for US$30 and US$50 respectively, both of which are valid for up to 3 months. As fees and policies can change, we highly recommend that you contact your local embassy or consulate for the most up-to-date visa requirements, or see your travel agent. It is your responsibility to have the correct travel documentation.
Every traveller is different and therefore spending money requirements will vary. Some travellers may drink more than others while other travellers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping and tipping. Please also remember the following specific recommendations when planning your trip.
The local currency in Tanzania is the Tanzanian Shilling (TSH).
Shillings can be obtained locally by changing foreign currency or by using ATMs (where available) which will disperse local currency. Your CEO will inform you where you can change money throughout the tour and approximately how much money you will need for each country.
The easiest foreign currency to exchange for locally for any of the local currencies is the $US; however, the British Pound and Euro may also be exchanged as well. Please note that due to past problems with forgery, $US notes that are older than year 2006 are not accepted in Africa.
Large note ($US 50, $US 100 etc) can be difficult to change in some places, but will gain you the best exchange rate.
If you plan to rely on cash, please bring foreign currency (Euro, Pound, USD) with you, as it is often expensive to buy these currencies locally. And in more rural areas, it is often not likely.
If you plan to buy your visas at borders, you will need to bring $USD cash to pay for these visas. Please note you cannot use the local currency or any other currency to buy these visas- they must be purchased in USD.
Please do not bring Travellers’ cheques to Africa. They are difficult if not impossible to exchange in many places.
Visa/master cards are the most widely accepted credit and debit cards.
While there are many ATMs in the major centres, there are no guarantees that your credit or debit cards will actually work in Africa. Check with your bank.
Credit cards can be used in major cities and towns ONLY but please do not rely on them as a method of payment because they are generally not widely accepted. You should be aware that to purchase products or services on a credit card a fee of 5%-10% usually applies.
Please note that in many areas there may be occasional power-outages, where there will be no electricity for hours at a time. In addition, ATMs outside of larger centers often run out of cash or can be out of order unexpectedly. These factors could affect your ability to access money from ATMs. As such, please do not rely on credit or debit cards as your only source of money.
A combination of foreign currency and debit/credit cards for cash advances is best. Always take more rather than less, as you don’t want to spoil the trip by constantly feeling short of funds.
As currency exchange rates can fluctuate often we ask that you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: www.xe.com.
Please also make sure you have access to at least an additional USD $200 (or equivalent) as an ’emergency’ fund, to be used when circumstances outside our control (ex. a natural disaster) require a change to our planned route. This is a rare occurrence!
Tipping is an expected – though not compulsory – component of your tour program and an expression of satisfaction with the persons who have assisted you on your tour. It is one of the most direct ways that you can have a positive economic impact within the East African community. Although it may not be customary for you, it is of considerable significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels. Giving a tip should be seen as a formal ‘thank you’, and the action should in no way be awkward. The best method of tipping someone that has served the whole group is to plan in advance, and not rush when it comes to saying goodbye. A suggestion would be for each group member to contribute anonymously by putting their tip into an envelop. This often works the best and the group as a whole should gather to present the gift to the recipient(s), offering their thanks and showing their appreciation. This method brings the action out into the open, allowing for a friendly and appreciative interaction between the group and the recipient(s).
You may use the following as a guideline, all given in a per client format: Chief Experience Officer: US$5-7 (full day); Certified Safari Guide/Driver: US$3-5 (full day); Local guide (optional activities) $1 for a couple hours; Restaurant/Café servers: 10% of cost of bill, especially when in a large group (no envelope required).
Optional Activities or Extensions
Personalize My Trip
Extras are specially designed for travellers with unique interests, they are optional add-ons to your TSA trip that make your adventure more you-centric. Extras must be booked prior to departure.
Extra available on this trip
Serengeti Balloon Safari
Serengeti, 1-hour, $539
Spirited aloft in a hot air balloon, you’ll get a view of the wildlife and terrain of the Serengeti that only the birds see. Enjoy a champagne breakfast and keep that shutter-finger good and limber—you’ll be using it plenty over the course of your hour in the air.
Optional activity prices are subject to change and can fluctuate in relation to the high/low season and the number of people on a specific excursion. Not all excursions listed here may be available, due to season, or weather conditions. As generally not a lot of time is spent in start/end cities, you may want to arrange to arrive early, or stay longer after the trip in order to allow sufficient time to participate in optional activities there.
All prices are in US dollar amounts, per person but will generally be paid in local currency. Please be aware that to purchase products or services on a credit card a fee of 5%-10% usually applies. The majority of the optional activities can be paid by credit card if desired.
Please note inoculations may be required for the country visited. It is your responsibility to consult with your travel doctor for up to date medical travel information well before departure.
We recommend you contact your family physician, or your local travel clinic for the most up-to-date health information at least one month before departure.
Please ensure you have all the inoculations recommended by your doctor for travel in East Africa. Be aware that Tanzania have many regions where malaria is present. We thus recommend that you take malaria medication; your doctor should be able to recommend the necessary prophylactics. Travellers should also carry a basic travel first-aid kit as medical facilities are basic in Tanzania. An important item to include is a liquid or gel hand sanitizer and/or alcoholic/sanitary wipes, as they will aid in personal cleanliness and hygiene throughout the trip. The local tap water should not be consumed, so any water treatment tablets (ex. iodine), drops, etc, would help, but good, clean, and inexpensive bottled water is widely available throughout the entire trip. If you have any pre-existing medical condition, you must inform.
East African trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness)
This is a serious parasitic disease that is always fatal without treatment. The disease is spread by the bite of tsetse flies, found only in parts of Eastern and Central Africa, including Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania. There is no vaccine or drug to prevent African trypanosomiasis.
Sand flies and Mosquitos
Are found in the areas visited. Mosquitos are more prevalent in areas that receive more rainfall, and sand flies, though generally found on the coast, can also be found in dry & dusty conditions inland. Both tend to come out in the early evening and early mornings.
This infectious disease is transmitted by mosquitos carrying the parasite. These mosquitos are found at altitudes of under 1,800m, and thus can be found in most areas that we visit on this tour. You must have prophylactics which you can obtain from your local doctor at or health clinic.
Precautions against insect bites
* Wear protective clothing, including long-sleeved shirts and pants at all times.
* Wear khaki or olive-coloured clothing. Tsetse flies are attracted to bright and dark colours.
* Use bed nets in high risk Malaria zones
* Inspect vehicles for tsetse flies before entering.
* Avoid bushes. Tsetse flies are less active during the hottest part of the day; they rest in bushes and will bite if disturbed.
* Use insect repellent. Although repellents have not proven effective in preventing tsetse fly bites, they are effective in preventing other insects from biting and causing illness.
It is very important that you wear sun block, even on a cloudy day when it feels cool as we are near the equator and the sun is very strong. A sunburn can turn a pleasant trip into a painful trip.
Even when days are cool please be sure to drink a minimum of two litres of water and refrain from drinking to many diuretics, as while when travelling outdoors the breeze can dehydrate you quickly as well as the heat.
It is normal for people travelling overseas to get an upset stomach due to a change of climate and food. Please make sure that you wash your hands and stay away from street food.
Safety and Security
Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government’s advice for their latest travel information before departure. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers’ cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home – you won’t need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage.
Couple of Rules
Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on any trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for our travellers. Our philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter, and in particular the local people who make the world the special place it is. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our CEOs have the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.
Travel Insurance: Travel and medical insurance is compulsory in order to participate on any of our trips. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects.
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