Here are few things to know before coming to Botswana
VISA AND PASSPORT INFORMATION
Important: Before your departure on safari, please ensure that your passport has enough blank pages (more than four) and is endorsed with a visa if required for any country to be visited.
We urge you to check the immigration requirements to each of the countries covered in CV your itinerary, before departure for Southern Africa. Immigration policies and regulations in each country can change from time to time without notice.
Although we will try to meet your safari requirements, Outdoor African Tour Safaris , their staff or agents will not be held responsible for any client traveling without a passport or without valid visa (s).
Zimbabwe: Visa entry requirements are US$30.00 per person .You will also be required to purchase US$30 departure tax stamp in cash at the airport on leaving Zimbabwe on international flights. In addition, there is KAZA Visa, which can be purchased at any entry point at a cost of US$50.00 per person.
Zambia Revised Visas:
Single entry: GB£25 or US$30.00
Multiple entry: GB£30 or US$60.00
Standard Visa: US$30.00
South Africa, Botswana and Namibia: No entry requirements for US citizens and most European Union Countries.
CAN I BRING A FLASHLIGHT/TORCH IN MY BACKPACK?
We recommend you bring a small, powerful flashlight/torch and spare batteries or recharger – although some of the shops sell flashlights/torches.
RECOMMENDED READING- NATURE BOOKS
Identifying and reading about species of birds or mammals with your local guides is an enjoyable part of your trip. As you are required to travel light, we recommend you purchase just one or two of these books:
For Keen bird watchers: Ken Newman’s Birds of South Africa, 7th Edition.
Mammals: Chris & Tilde Stuart’s Field Guide to the Mammals of Southern Africa.
Keen on reptiles: Bill Branch’s Field Guide to the Snakes & Reptiles of Southern Africa.
You want to learn tracking skills on Safari: Clive Walker’s Sign of the Wild.
WHAT SORT OF ELECTRICAL POWER OUTLETS DO THEY USE IN AFRICA?
220v or 110v are the most commonly used electrical power outlets. South Africa, Botswana and Namibia have a round plug system similar to American type. Zimbabwe and Zambia have square 3- pin plugs similar to British type. We recommend you bring a 50watt Radio Shack multi-nation Travel Adapter that can convert 220/240v to 110/120v and will fit most sockets in Southern Africa or Europe. Most game lodges use diesel generators or solar panels for electricity in the camp, please bear with lodge staff and management as they will advise when the power will be available for our use.
CAN WILD ANIMALS BE APPROACHED UNACCOMPANIED BY A GUIDE?
Never! Even if animals approach the camp grounds, we are not in a Zoo or a Theme Park where animals are accustomed to humans. Your safari will be conducted in real African wilderness with occasional close encounters with wild animals. Attacks by these animals are rare, but we cannot guarantee that it will not happen. All wild animals need to be treated with respect. Clients are advised to adhere to rules and follow the instructions of the guide conducting your safari, especially on walking trails.Outdoor African Tour Safaris cannot be held responsible for any injury or incident that may occur due to carelessness or negligence on your part.
WHAT HAPPENS, SHOULD A PROBLEM OCCUR?
We expect your trip to be problem free, but if any do occur, please do not hesitate to contact your guide who will be able to assist or attend to your problem immediately.
IS THE WATER SAFE TO DRINK?
Yes, Botswana tap water is safe to drink. We recommend you drink bottled water when travelling.
Note: To avoid effects of dehydration, please drink lots of bottled water and other beverages while traveling, especially in the hot months (August to November). On any walking safaris please take one or two bottles of water with you.
WHAT TRAVEL INSURANCE DO I NEED?
We strongly advise you to purchase full and comprehensive travel insurance to cover any eventuality before traveling, including: Safari Cancellation, Injury, accident, illness, death, medical expenses, emergency repatriation, loss of money or personal belongings. This is compulsory on all trips, please arrange with your personal broker or agent before departure.
Outdoor African Tour Safaris shall not be liable or held responsible for any loss of baggage, damage, injury, death, safari cancellation, accident or illness during the safari trip.
Basic First Aid Kit with any personal medications, anti-malarial tablets, mosquito repellant lotion/spray, and antihistamine cream/tabs, Elastoplasts, Imodium, antiseptic cream and aspirin. Vitamin A helps to ward off, and heal, sunburn
WHAT INFORMATION WILL I NEED TO FILE AN INSURANCE CLAIM WHEN I RETURN?
If an incident(s) occurs, keep copies of every detail and documents such as: Police reports, doctor’s note, when and where it happened, etc. in order to enable you to make a claim on your return home.
WHAT SORT OF CLOTHING AND BAGGAGE SHOULD I CARRY ON SAFARI?
We would encourage you to keep your clothing and baggage to casual and comfortable basics.
DO NOT brings the following clothing: ARMY/Camouflage print clothing, bright colors, and army hats.
CLIMATE IN SOUTHERN AFRICA:
Things to bring on the safari
Summer months are November, December, January and February, with minimum temperatures of 36 degrees F/2 degrees C.
Winter months are May, June and July which can be very cold with minimum temperatures of 36 degrees F/2 degrees C.
Spring months are August, September and October and this is the best Safari season although hot with lowest temperatures of 60 degrees F/15 degrees C.
Park clothing according to the season in which you will travel- frosts in an African winter are not uncommon. Choose neutral colored so as not to startle the animals.
Here follows a suggested list:
Good walking shoes – Leather or trainer type, with high ankle.
Good strong sandals
Long trousers (preferably unzip at knee type) chinos or slacks
Long sleeved shirts for evenings/short sleeved for day
Swimming costume/bathing suit.
Warm track suit
Shorts/skirts for ladies
T/shirts (cotton) Underwear and socks.
Lightweight pair of good binoculars.
Cameras and plenty of film/spare batteries/multi-plug recharger
Khaki/green peak cap or shady bush hat.
Torch/flashlight with spare batteries Warm sweater, beanie, scarf, warm gloves for winter months (Preferably warm Anorak/Parka for cold early morning drives
Your valid passport!
Polarized good quality sunglasses
If you wear contact lenses, bring enough cleaner and solution for the trip.
Tip: Also pack a spare pair of ordinary prescription glasses- we may encounter very dusty conditions when you will be more comfortable with ordinary spectacles.
HOW MUCH MONEY IS ALLOWED ON SAFARI?
We will recommend you bring small denominations in cash for easy exchange, tips, airport departure taxes etc. US$1, US$2, US$5, US$10, US$20, US$50. Many countries may not have change for large notes such as US$100. Credit cards can be used in South Africa and Botswana. Ensure that your tour leader guide is close to you when using credit cards, as she/he knows the requirements of each country’s Credit Card facilities.
HOW MUCH AM I SUPPOSED TO TIP ON SAFARI?
Tipping during safari is not compulsory, and is at client’s discretion. A guideline is: Guide on the safari with you- around US$8.00 per person per day.
General staff e.g camp assistant- around US$5.00 per client per day- usually lodges provide a tipping box and tips are shared amongst all the staff.
In hotels/ restaurants, around 5% is usual for excellent service.
GETTING TO BOTSWANA
Botswana’s national and only airline provides international flights to Johannesburg and Harare. It provides domestic flights to Francistown, Maun and Kasane. Air Namibia flies to Maun everyday of the week except Tuesdays and Thursdays. Most major international airlines from Asia, USA and Europe fly into Johannesburg, South Africa.
Outdoor African Tour Safari shall not pay for any air transportation to reach Botswana and to the destination point. We are happy to make the flight arrangement for the client. Outdoor African Tour Safari shall not be held responsible for changes at the airlines so any additional cost incurred due to the change in flights or days, the client shall pay. Throughout the entire booking process, it is the responsibility of the client to ensure that enough time has been calculated in order not to miss connecting flights and transfers.
The country is accessible by tarred roads from South Africa, Zambia Namibia and Zimbabwe. Vehicles are driven on the left side of the road. At all time a valid international driver’s license is required when driving. Most major roads are generally good. Four wheel drive vehicles are required when driving in the national parks and game reserves.
There are schedule buses services across borders between South Africa, Zimbabwe, Namibia and Zambia.
CANCELLATIONS AND REFUNDS OF BOOKINGS
All cancellations should be request through a phone call first, followed by a written letter or email to Outdoor African Tour Safari and shall effect on the same date of actual receipt by Outdoor African Tour Safari. We shall follow the following cancellations according to days of cancellation:
90 days or more notice,100% of the total booking cost shall be refunded.
60-89 days notice,95% of the total booking cost shall be refunded.
31-59 days notice, 90% of the total booking cost shall be refunded
30 days or less notice, 80% of the total booking cost shall be refunded
Account Name:Outdoors African Tour Safari
Bank: First National Bank
Account Number: 625 159 375 66
Branch code: 281 867
Swift code: FIRNBWGX
For a client to secure a provisional reservation for the services required, he/she client shall complete in writing and dispatch to Outdoor African Tour Safari a provisional booking reservation form. The client shall then pay Outdoor African Tour Safari a deposit of 20% (Twenty percent) of the quoted cost for the services. In the event of the deposit not being paid aforesaid, the provisional booking shall lapse.
Upon receiving the booking form by Outdoor African Tour Safari, the balance of the monies due from the client shall be paid 60 days prior to departure, the provisional booking shall be confirmed. In the event of the client wishing to amend his reservation in any way, Outdoor African Tour Safari will be happy to assist. No amendment fee will be charged.
The client shall advise Outdoor African Tour Safari in writing on the booking reservation form of any special requests, needs or facilities required by him due to medical needs. Outdoor African Tour Safari shall not charge for the service unless otherwise stated.
Outdoor African Tour Safari uses the following physical, postal and email addresses number for the purposes of receiving any written notice provided for or required by the office
OUTDOOR AFRICAN TOUR SAFARI
Reg No: CO:2011/7652
Physical Address: Botswana , Maun
Tell: +267 7423 8247 +267 7561 0070
Postal Address: P O Box 1588 Maun , Botswana
Outdoor African Tour Safaris wishes you a memorable safari