If you are planning on booking a safari itinerary, you want to know what to ask for right? In that case travel agents would be your best bet. Because of their year of experience and the connections that they have with different venues, you may get some great tips and deals that way. However, to be able to talk to them you must know what questions to ask for. Here is a list that, we thought, you may want to ask them before anything:
Is the lodge located in a national park or outside of it? National parks can have a lot of restrictions: sometime its good sometime not so good. You want to have a lot of leeway (after all you spent all that money to enjoy yourself right?). Private camps offer more freedom for exploration whether by foot or car. It all depends of what you are looking for of course.
What is the best time to travel? Well…. It depends on what you are looking for. Most people like going on a safari when it is sunny and dry – high season. However, if you are a bit of an outcast and don’t really mind the rain and thunder you can definitely consider going during the low season where you could get some amazing deal (50% off). Also you may want to attend bird migration so make sure you discuss all these expectations and wants with your operation/agent.
What is included in the rate? Safari camps are most of the time in remote area so they do provide an all-exclusive package. Some of them also have restrictions of what to offer so make sure you check with your agent what it is that you are looking for.
Can I make a change and what are the restrictions? Rarely events occur and you need to make changes. This should be fairly easy to do but always check with your operator to see what are the cancellations rules as well as rules in changing your itinerary.
How far is the lodge from other activities and the airport? Well a trivial question but not so much. If you are traveling with a tight budget you want to know this one. Although lodges provide free ride from and to the airport some don’t. You would have to rely on your own transportation (private driver, renting a car etc….) this can be another budget breaker.
Do you accommodate dietary restrictions? When you are paying big bucks for leisure, food must definitely be up to par. Most luxury safaris serve meals similar to those you will find in high-end restaurants. However, ask for a sample menu so you know what to prepare for in case you don’t really like any exotic meal options.
Is there a best guide and best room? Ask your operator these questions a fantastic guide will make a huge difference in your wild life experience. Also use other traveler experiences to make yours one that you would never forget!