SAFARI GUIDELINE & FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQS)
A. Clothing and Toiletries-What Should I pack for a Kenya Safari?
What you should pack for your Kenya safari depends entirely on where you are going and the kind of activities you plan to do. Here are some of the things you should pack for the unforgettable Kenya safaris.
One tip for packing clothes is to bring pieces that are versatile. Remember, there are baggage limits, especially if you will be taking small connecting flights. Bring clothes that can be worn multiple times
(sweaters/jackets/trousers) and those that can easily be paired off. Consider the weather- if you are visiting Kenya between April- June, it will be raining. As such, pack a rain jacket, a sweater, trousers, and boots. It helps if they are in darker colors that won’t show dirt as quickly. Regardless of what you have heard, it gets quite chilly in the mornings and evenings, so carry a warm sweater and scarf for that. For warmer times of the year, carry light, long-sleeved t-shirts, and trousers/ shorts. Long sleeves are essential as mosquitos, and
other bugs can be a menace, especially when outside. You want to bring something smart for dinner or a night out. For ladies, dress/ skirt or trousers that can be paired easily with a top will do. Men should carry pants and at least one long-sleeved shirt.
If you plan to swim, remember to pack your swimming wear.
Finally, carry shoes that are comfortable and easy to get in and out of, such as canvas shoes. Do not forget to pack some sandals for the evenings or for walking around the lodges.
Toiletries and First Aid Kit
While some safari lodges might provide some bathroom essentials, it is always best to pack what you think you will need throughout your safari in Kenya. Alternatively, you can buy these things once in Kenya.
Important items here include:
|· Toothbrush and toothpaste
· Soap, shampoo and Deodorant
· Female sanitary supplies
|· Prescription medicine
· Mosquito Repellent
B. Gadgets-What to Pack for your Safari Trips in Kenya?
Well, it’s a bit of a cliché to include gadgets on a safari packing list. This is because we imagine one goal of an African safari is to get away from it all; be one with nature. For this reason, we plan to limit the
gadget to the most necessary?
Camera/ Video Camera
It goes without saying that you must bring a camera to record all the awesome sights you will see on your Kenya holiday.
Do not forget to carry the battery charger and a couple of extra memory cards. Imagine chancing on a hunt only to find your memory card full!
Finally, carry an extra battery- in case the camera dies on you far away from the lodge and electricity!
Your phone is essential, but please don’t be glued to it all the way. Ensure that you get a local sim card (cheapest option) or set it to roaming. Please note that most National Parks will have bad reception, but you
can make your calls once you are back to the lodge.
If you can’t wait to share the excitement of your Kenya Safari tours with your family back home or with your social media followers, then do bring a laptop. Again, use it sparingly, and don’t spend more time on
it that you need to. It is also useful for transferring photos when you have limited memory on your camera/phone.
C. Money-What to Pack for your Kenya Holiday?
While you might have paid for your Kenya safari package in advance, you will need to carry some pocket money with you. This is useful to buy on the spot souvenirs, tips, and phone airtime.
The easiest currency to bring is USD.
You can convert this to Kenya Shillings at the airport, or your local guide can show you a trusted forex bureau. Ensure that you get small denomination notes.
You can also withdraw cash from numerous VISA & MasterCard ATMs located in towns, but once you get to the remote areas, these will be scarce.
It is not advisable to carry large amounts of money during your trip. Carry only what is necessary for use during the day.
D. Travel Documents-What to Pack for your Kenya Holiday?
The most essential travel document is your Passport. Ensure that you have a digital copy of it stored online, as well as a physical copy.
You can keep the original in the safe provided in your lodges/Hotels or Camps.
Do the same for other important documents such as air tickets, insurance certificates, and credit cards.
E. Miscellaneous Items-What to Pack for your Kenya Holiday?
Other items that you will find useful in your Kenya safari tour include binoculars, a wide-brimmed hat, day bag, a book or kindle, a board game if you are traveling with children and protective waterproof bags for your gadgets and documents.
F. Animals-What to Pack for your Kenya Holiday?
Kenya boasts some of the best game viewing opportunities in the world. Whether you are in a big game reserve such as the Masai Mara or in one of the smaller Kenya safari parks, you will see a lot of animals.
These are some of the animals you can expect to see during Safari trips in Kenya.
The Big 5 (Lion, Rhino, Elephant, Buffalo, Leopard)
Fun fact-did you know they are called ‘The Big 5’ because they are the most dangerous especially when wounded, and not because they are the biggest?
Others are Cheetahs, Giraffes, Monkeys, numerous Bird Species, Gazelles, Wildebeest, Hyena, Wild Dogs, Oryx, Waterbucks and Hippos.
G. Vaccinations-What Vaccinations do I need to go to Kenya?
Prevention is better than cure. The purpose of vaccination is to protect you from preventable diseases that might be prevalent in some of the areas that you will visit during your Kenya safari tours.
I mean, after planning for a Kenya safari for several months, you do not want to fall sick in the middle of your trip. As a rule of thumb, the best place to start is at your doctor’s office, it doesn’t hurt to check and confirm that you are in tip top shape for such a trip.
The two most important vaccines/precautions that you require for Kenya are:
- Yellow Fever
Unfortunately, Kenya falls on Yellow Fever and Malaria “belts”. This means that the two diseases are prevalent in some areas, especially in the hot months.
Both diseases are spread by the female anopheles’ mosquito and are not spread by touch or exchange of fluids.
For Yellow Fever, there is a vaccine that lasts up to 10years. You should have this vaccine done at least 10 days before you travel to make sure that it has kicked in as you arrive.
Should I Take Malaria Pills for Kenya?
Yes. There is no vaccine for Malaria yet and you are advised to consult your doctor on the best anti-malarial tablets for you.
As a precaution while on safari make sure that you use repellant at all times, and wear long-sleeved t-shirts/ long trousers while outside, especially in the evenings.
Other Routine Vaccines for Kenya Include:
- Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR)
- Chicken Pox
- Diphtheria, Tetanus, Whooping Cough
- Hepatitis A
H. GENERAL QUESTIONS
Q. What are the benefits of booking with an Agent?
A. You save money. A strong working relationship with travel vendors and the latest in computer reservations technology enables us to access the most up-to-date information on how to get you the best value for your travel needs.
We are your travel advocates. Your best interests are our priority. Premier Safaris has a long-standing record of successfully performing for our client’s value for money. We also take pride in adhering to a strict code of professional and personal ethics.
We value our client’s privacy and never share your plans or itineraries.
We are knowledgeable and active in the tours and travel industry and equip our travel consultants with the best and latest tools to ensure the highest quality of service. Our travel and tour consultants are there for you, going the extra mile to do all they can to ensure your travel is as pleasant and comfortable as possible.
Q. When is the best time of year to visit Kenya and East Africa?
A. Kenya and East Africa are great year-round destinations. The main tourist season is in January and February, since the hot, dry weather at this time of year is generally considered to be the most pleasant. It’s also when bird life flocks to the Rift Valley lakes in the greatest numbers. June to September could be called the ‘shoulder season’ as the weather is still dry. The rains hit from March to May (and to a lesser extent from October to December). During these months’ things are much quieter – places tend to have rooms available and prices may decrease. The rains generally don’t affect travelers’ ability to get around.
July/August and December are the busiest times when parks and lodges get a bit crowded and reservations often must be made at least 6 to 8 months in advance. Travel during rest of the year primarily depends on the weather.
Q. What is the weather like in Kenya and East Africa?
A. Kenya and East Africa enjoy a tropical climate. It is hot and humid at the coast, temperate inland and very dry in the north and northeast parts of the region. The average annual temperature in Nairobi (altitude 4,980 feet/1,518 meters) is 77°F(25°C) max 56°F(13°C) min.
The coastal town of Mombasa (altitude 50 feet/15 meters) is 86°F(30°C) max and 73°F(22°C) mi. There is plenty of sunshine all the year round and summer clothes are worn throughout the year. However, it is usually cool at night and early in the morning.
The long rains occur from April to June and short rains from October to December. The rainfall is sometimes heavy and when it does come, it often falls in the afternoons and evenings. The hottest period is from February to March and the coolest from July to August.
Q. When does the famous wildebeest migration take place?
A. The annual migration of wildlife between Serengeti National Park in Tanzania and the Maasai Mara National Park in Kenya takes place between June and September. The migration of almost two million wildebeest, zebras and other species is nature’s greatest spectacle on earth. During the rest of the year the herd can be seen in different parts of the massive Serengeti National Park and Maasai Mara Game Reserve.
Q. Is a Visa required for entry into Kenya and neighboring countries?
A. YES, you require a visa to enter Kenya and countries in the region depending on your home country. Please check with your embassies before travel.
Q. What is the mode of payment when want to book a safari?
A. We require 50% deposit to confirm a booking, sent by wire transfer to our bank account, and balance is payable at least 30 days prior to commencement of the safari or can be paid either in cash or US dollars on arrival.
Q. Do I have to pay a departure tax at the airport?
A. Like most international destinations, Kenya and countries in the region charge an airport departure tax for all international flights. The tax may be included in the airline ticket price. If it is not included, visitors must pay the tax in cash at the airport upon arrival.
Departure taxes can be paid in local currency or U.S. Dollars.
Q. Is tipping required in Kenya and neighboring countries?
A. Most major hotels and restaurants include a service charge. Tipping is not obligatory and is entirely at your discretion. Porters at airports, hotels or lodges may be tipped a $5.00 per piece of baggage.
Note that on safaris, tips are considered almost part of the pay. A tip for your guide of $5.00 to $10.00 per person per day is appropriate depending on the services.
Q. How many people do you take on a safari?
A. Most of our safaris operate on private basis with a minimum of two persons booking, and we recommend not more than 7 persons for maximum comfort and guaranteed window seats.
Q. What is safari accommodation like?
A. The type of accommodation is either basic camping, luxury tented camps or lodges depending on your budget.
Q. What are the meals like?
A. The meals are primarily European style buffets with African influences.
Q. What kind of vehicle will we be traveling during the safari?
A. Our classic safari vehicle is a purpose built 7-seater minibus and 7-seater Landcruiser’s specially designed for easy photographing. It comes complete with a pop-up roof for easy game viewing.
For Tanzania safaris we use 4×4 Landcruiser for the safaris.
Q. Do we require Travel Insurance?
A. We strongly recommend that you take out all the necessary Travel Insurance before commencing on your journey. However, we can assist with local insurance companies to cover health, baggage and any other insurance related issues.
Please do not hesitate to contact any of our Agents to answer and clarify any questions/ concerns you might have regarding your safari.
We endeavor to ensure that you get the most adventurous, unforgettable, memorable and amazing Safari through proper planning and assistance.