For unforgettable East African wildlife safari, below are safari travel tips you should know before and when on your trip.
Best time to Visit
You can visit anytime of the year but best travel experiences, wildlife photography moments are had in the dry season. There are mainly two travel seasons in East Africa, the dry and wet season. The dry season starts from December to March and June to September which are peak traveling months for African safaris.
The wet season is from April to May and from October to November. Safaris are doable in the wet seasons and with more exclusivity as there are less people traveling then. Each season therefore has its own advantages
Photos and videos taken on a safari create great memories that people share family and friends. This makes photography safari travel tips very vital for anyone planning a safari.
One should ensure to have a good camera to capture every moment on the safari. Carry extra batteries as national parks are in remote areas and there will be need to change battery on transit.
What to Wear
This is very vital and there is always need to prepare well for your trip ahead of time. The weather is a bit hot in East Africa and therefore light clothes like shirts, blouses, trousers are highly recommended.
Ensure to also pack both closed and open shoes. Closed shoes should be strong and good for hiking especially when you have activities like primate tracking on your itinerary.
Add a long sleeved T-shirt, trousers, rain coat as tracking is done in a forest which is usually wet. More so rainfall is unpredictable and can occur anytime of the day so one needs to be prepared enough. A Cap or hut plus sun glasses are additional one should be with.
Most countries have developed an online visa application system where one must apply for the visa online before arrival. Other countries however, you can still get visas on arrival at the airport or at the border while crossing over.
When Visiting Uganda, Rwanda and Kenya, opt for the East African tourist Visa that is Multiple entry. The East African tourist visa can give you access to the three countries without having to apply for another visa.
There is no standard tipping procedure and tipping depends on the level of satisfaction of the service being offered. You choose to tip, the driver guides, Ranger guides plus the Hotel personnel like waiters or waitresses.
Below are the general guideline:
-Driver Guides: USD 15 – USD 25 per day
-Ranger guides: USD 10– USD 15 per group / party per day
-Porter (Airport & Lodge/Hotel) : USD 5 per group / party
-Staff (City Hotel & Restaurant) : 10% of total bill (some city hotels & restaurants automatically include this)
-Waiters or Waitresses: USD10 – USD15 per group / party per day
-Gorillas or Chimpanzee Tracking: USD 10 – USD20 per track per group that can be given to the head guide to share with colleagues.
-Porters (Gorillas) : USD 15
Note that these tips can be given in local currency depending on the country you are in at the moment. Its important to change to local currency on the first day of the tour. Some Hotels have tip boxes where you can put your tip to be shared among all staff even back office.