Going on safari is an expensive pursuit for which many people save up over a long period. It is important to know what you are getting for what you pay. Prices are fairly directly driven by the exclusivity of the experience, the location (the amount of traversing and water available, ease of access from transport hubs) and the level of luxury.
We try to guide your selection of lodges and itineraries by grouping safaris by daily inclusive rate per person sharing a double/twin room.
Each page shows a number of little money bags, from two to seven, at the top right hand side which correspond to these ranges (currency conversions are indicative using today’s spot rate):
Private lodge prices include activities and food. Generally the following are included in daily rates:
- Dinner (icons show whether this is buffet style or fine dining)
- Breakfast or (more often) brunch
- Lunch (unless you are arriving or leaving on the day concerned)
- Two game activities, usually a morning game drive and an afternoon/evening game drive
- Refreshments on drive
- An optional walking activity, usually in the morning after the first drive of the day.
The daily rate includes most of the things you will need; a good comparison to make sense of this is to compare how much you would expect to spend on a day off in your home area, including meals out and activities such as a trip to the cinema or shopping.
Price indications are based on the rack rate for the cheapest accommodation, in low season, and are not necessarily what we will be able to quote as part of a package. They do not reflect special offers which we will apply to your quote.
WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED
Transport to and from lodges is not included in the daily rate.
What’s included when you get there does vary slightly by lodge, for example inclusion of alcoholic beverages, be they local or premium.
Spas and treatments are another area where approaches differ. Some lodges will include one treatment a day or one a trip. This may be true if we can extend an offer to you. In most cases, however, these are an added luxury for your own account.
Your more wild and wonderful activities – helicopter flips, horse trails, rafting, daytrips – are normally not included in the daily rate but are included in the package price that we quote to you.
When you request a price for a specific itinerary that we put together for you, your transport costs will be added and made clear in your quote. Inclusions and exclusions will be specified.
We change the range indicated for a package to reflect the cost of transportation specified in that deal – internal flights, road transfers, car hire etc. This may affect the average daily price when spread over the safari.
SINGLE TRAVELLERS, FAMILIES
Single travellers, parties with children, larger groups and those wanting VIP exclusive lodge use should definitely enquire, as they are often offered deals which are not simple multiples of prices for adults sharing. Lodges that specialise in these types of party are also highlighted with an icon in their descriptions.
WHY WE DO THIS
We have grouped lodges and itineraries into ranges to enable comparison. Lodges can move price bracket at peak times, particularly Christmas, New Year and Easter, or with special offers, but the range is based on the lowest normal rack rate. Where prices are highly seasonal (e.g. the lodge moves its price bracket at times other than Christmas or Easter), we have tried to indicate this in the description.
We provide these ranges as an indication of the price that you can expect to pay for your safari. We only recommend lodges which fit comfortably among their peers in their price range in terms of level of comfort, the game viewing in their area, and the effort that goes into this and your overall experience. We visit our lodges to check that they are up to standard, stay in touch with the owners, operators and guides, and incorporate the experiences of our clients in our thinking.
The safari world is dynamic, prices change and deals come and go, often last minute or for a small number of rooms or limited dates (e.g., to fill an empty weekend at an otherwise busy Lodge). We will make you aware of good offers around the time of your safari as we help you plan.
Special offers are an important part of running a Lodge efficiently and work to the benefit of all. Being aware of the existence of these, the times that they are available, and the terms and conditions, are some of the good reasons to use an expert in booking your safari. Special Offers can move a lodge down an entire price range from time to time and are well worth taking into consideration.
The standard star rating system is not particularly helpful in choosing a safari lodge. Many are five star, at least in comfort and spirit, judged by international standards. However, some do not formally qualify because they do not offer oddities of the grading such as 24 hour room service or hairdryers in rooms.
We accept payment by VISA or Mastercard credit cards issued in all major jurisdictions. These are made securely online using a facility that we provide at the time that you confirm your booking. We do not pass on fees for providing the service of credit card acceptance (you will find that it is commonplace elsewhere in South Africa to add on 5% or more for the privilege of paying by card). We can accept direct bank transfers to our South African account, but recommend using cards because of the certainty of payment and the protection that they offer.