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Any experiences with ecoAfrica.com and the following lodges?

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Jan 22nd, 2006, 01:32 PM
  #1
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Any experiences with ecoAfrica.com and the following lodges?

I'm planning a trip to Botswana for a family of three (might as well be four given the single supplements <sigh> and have been talking with an agent in the Capetown office at ecoAfrica (ecoAfrica.com). I'm wondering if anyone here has had any experiences with this travel agency and can comment.

Also, we're looking at the following lodges. If anyone has experiences positive or negative with them, I'd love the feedback. They are:
Savuti Safari Lodge
Camp Okavango
Camp Moremi

Our LH flight is scheduled to get into Johannesburg aabout 8 a.m. There is a 10 a.m. departure to Maun. Generally, I would spend the night to ensure no problems making the next flight, but I'm also eager to get to Botswana. Do you think it would be too risky to book the same day departure to Maun?

Lastly, are the flights booked through Kulula.com between Johannesburg and Capetown reliable?

Thank you
uffda1 is offline  
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Jan 22nd, 2006, 02:40 PM
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Hello,

When you say 'Savuti Safari Camp,' do you mean the one in the Linyanti, or the one in Chobe? Both have camps named Savuti (sometimes spelled Savute).

I've made the JNB-MUB transfer, and I would not bank on being able to make the 10am flight to Maun unless you are on the BA flight that arrives at 6am. 2 hours is not enough time since you'll have to collect your luggage and re-check it (Air Botswana is not part of any airline partnerships so you won't be able to check it straight through). Spend a night in Joburg -- there is a plenty to see and do, and this will also ensure that the worst of your jetlag should be over by the time you get to Botswana.

I've flown Kulula several times. Kulula flights (between Cape Town and Joburg or elsewhere) are reliable in that they do run, but not particularly so in terms of timing. Kulula has a habit of cancelling any flight which does not sell well and putting those passengers on another airline, which can delay your takeoff by an hour or two. Fine if you have nothing planned for when you land, but bad news if you have a connection to make. I wouldn't use Kulula when I had a connection to make.

I've booked both of my Botswana trips through a company in the US, Eyes on Africa (www.eyesonafrica.net) which provides extremely competitive pricing and great service. I would get a quote from them as well. Some of the quotes I got from South African companies were much higher than EOA's quote.

Cheers,
Julian
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Jan 23rd, 2006, 07:51 AM
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Thank you Julian. I appreciate the comments.
uffda1 is offline  
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Jan 23rd, 2006, 07:52 AM
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Oops - forgot to answer ... it's the Savuti Safari Lodge in Chobe.
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Jan 23rd, 2006, 08:00 AM
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(might as well be four given the single supplements <sigh>

I'll go!!!
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Jan 23rd, 2006, 01:08 PM
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Hi Uffda,

I'm not sure what your budget is, but if the single supplements are proving to be a problem I'd look into the lodges run by CCAfrica (www.ccafrica.com). CCA is beloved by single African travellers everywhere because they do not charge a single supplement. Their lodges are spectacular, and Sandibe has an unusual silent-running electric boat for exploring the Okavango.

Alternatively, I'm also up for temporary adoption...

I'd recommend choosing the Linyanti/Kwando area over Chobe -- the lodges in the Linyanti area are much smaller and provide a more personal experience in a similar ecosystem (though the Linyanti is not quite so devastated by the elephants). The lodges in Chobe are rather large and hotel-like, so there are a lot more tourists (plus self-drivers and day-trippers from Vic Falls, etc).

Cheers,
Julian
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