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11 days and counting down, but have another dreaded question on tipping.

11 days and counting down, but have another dreaded question on tipping.

May 26th, 2008, 12:45 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 76
11 days and counting down, but have another dreaded question on tipping.

Yes, yes!! We will be leaving in 11 days. I am so, sooooo...... excited!!! We received our "final documents" from OAT, which consisted of another booklet outlining our trip, etc.

Oat finally had a recommendation on "tipping" in this booklet. Most were the same as many of you were kind enough to share with me and/or on posts that I had searched for on this forum.

This is OAT guidelines:
Trip Leader $7 - $10 pppd
Driver/Guide $5 - $7 pppd
Serengeti camp crew $20 pppd
Lodges and other camps $3 - $5 pppd

My questions:
1 - Are the Trip Leader & Driver/Guides to be tipped based on how many days we are in the vehicle with each of the three? All suggestions about this welcome.

2 - ShayTay, in a post of 01/13/2008, 12:50 pm you gave a Serengeti camp tipping amount of $8 pppd. The recommended $20 pppd that OAT listed is quite an increase???? Would some one please comment on this, please.

3 - We are taking the post-trip to Masai Mara and since there was not a separate tipping guideline, I am "stupidly assuming??" that the guideline for Tz will suffice??

4 - Does anyone know when school is in session in Tz & Kenya as we are scheduled to visit "if they are in session" (duh, could you not give dates or tell us yes we are or no we are not???) and would like to take some pens, pencils, books or other classroom material to donate.

I owned a bookstore for 20 years in my previous life and I tend to favor books and/or educational material as gifts from 6 mos. to infinity. Since I sold the store & retired, my daughter says I am now a HMKW (high maintance keep woman), darn if she's not correct. ;-)

I have not weighed DH's or my duffel bag yet, but from past experiences taking carry-ons only we still have a few pounds to fill, so might as well make good use of them. And yes, I can pack for a three week trip in a carry-on with room to spare. ;-)

Woolite & Tide pens are my friends.

Thanks in advance for all help given with these questions.
llorear is offline  
May 26th, 2008, 03:46 PM
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 2,619
Hi Linda,

I'd certainly say that the guidelines for the tented camp have gone up! I'd like to see what others think of that recommendation. To me, the guidelines for the trip leader and the driver/guide are on the low side. The trip leader will be one of your driver/guides that coordinates everything and is usually the most experienced. If you have 3 guides over 12 days, you'd tip each one the equivalent of 4 days, pppd. You should be rotating among the vehicles, but you may ride with one guide more than another or enjoy one more than another so take that into account when you tip. Set aside your guides' tip money at the beginning of the trip with a some extra, just in case. I think you'll enjoy your guides enough that you'll want to tip on the high side. I think I usually tip about $10 for the regular guides and $12 - $15 for the lead guide. I'd go with $5 pppd for the camp staffs, as well.

The tipping guidelines for the guides and camp staffs should be okay in Kenya, as well.

In June, I think you'll find that the Kenyan schools will be in session, but the Tanzanian schools may be on break... that's what I found last June, anyway. OAT may find a school in Tanzania that you could visit, though, as some schools remain open during the break so that the older kids can study for their secondary school exams. They will appreciate any school supplies you can give them, but cash is also greatly appreciated.
ShayTay is offline  
May 27th, 2008, 02:00 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 76
ShayTay, thanks for the reply.

As to tips, I had already figured out how much for tips using information that you had posted to an earlier query of mine. So I will just go with that amount instead of using the OAT recommendations, unless I receive more clarification about this once we are there.

Re schools: you are correct in that monetary donations are always the "right size".

Thanks again.
llorear is offline  
May 27th, 2008, 02:49 PM
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 4,232
our tipping is quite simple - in my opinion and it remains the same for ALL countries and camps (no difference between high-end and mid-range camps):
driver/guide and tracker: 10$pppd
camp staff tipping box: 10$pd
if driver/guide and/or tracker change during stay: split equally depending on game drives means 5$pppdrive
we always have a look at the "tipping guidelines". sometimes they match with ours, sometimes they don't but we don't care. we stick to ours.
we mostly hand out small gifts with the money and alswways hand out the tips directly to the driver/guide and tracker!
if there is not a tipping box we hand out the camp staff tip to the head waiter when other camp staff is around. the manager as recipient is also okay - we make always sure staff members are around ;-)
divine54 is offline  
May 27th, 2008, 03:49 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 76

Thanks for your kind reply. I have come to the conclusion that you must make you own "fair" tipping rules and if your conscience is "well" then go with that.


llorear is offline  
Jun 6th, 2008, 08:49 AM
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 3
Linda, mind telling me what YOUR guidelines are, now that you've sorted out all the suggestions? Leaving in a week and I'm having the same problem you had. Asante sana.
amigom is offline  
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