What is the difference between a private and a shared safari?
There are a few different things you may wish to research and plan before diving in and booking a tour operator for your African safari holiday. There are so many safari companies around, and choosing one out of a huge list can be confusing and overwhelming. Here are some dilemmas and choices you may come across when researching tour operators.
More freedom with a private safari
It is important to know what type of safari you are going on upfront before booking to avoid disappointment. So, here is the difference between the two most common types of tour packages available:
Private safari – A private safari has so many advantages over a shared one, not only can you choose every aspect of your safari, including the dates, destinations, accommodations and extra activities, but you also have your own safari vehicle in which only yourself and your group travel in.
Shared safari – Going on a shared safari means that you will be sharing your entire experience with a random group of individuals, which includes sharing your safari vehicle, and even sometimes your accommodation. This may appeal more to some lone travellers looking to make friends on holiday, but for allot of others, it is best to book a private safari.
Should I choose a local tour operator or a travel agency?
Many people choose to book with an international travel agency as they do not know enough about local tour operators, and are scared to pay their money to a foreign company. However, there are many respected and trusted local operators around who are there to help you every step of the way and ensure that you have a great holiday.
The advantages of booking with a local tour operator include:
They are experts in their given field within the industry as they specialise in African travel, this is all that they do, so they are good at it. Whereas international travel agents offer holidays all over the world, so their expertise in just one region may not be as good as a local company’s employees.
Local tour operators are generally much cheaper than international travel agents, so you are pretty much cutting out the costs of paying a third party commission by booking with a local African agency.
ow do I know if I am booking with a good tour operator or not?
There are plenty of reviews online of tour operators on platforms such as TripAdvisor. Simply reading these reviews will give you a better idea of how past clients rate specific safari companies.
You can also judge a tour operator on the response time and quality of information they provide you with. Your main point of contact whilst booking a safari will be the sales representative, and if they appear to really have your best interests at heart, then it says allot about how the company works.