Balloon Tanz/Kenya


Nov 23rd, 2004, 07:40 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2003
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Balloon Tanz/Kenya

Hi! We will be in Tanz & Kenya in Feb and would like to do a hot air balloon trip in either Serengetti or Mara. Can anyone tell me how payment cna be made for this? Can we use US$TC's or credit card?

We are trying to figure out our budget or how much we need to take in TC's. We are a little trigger shy of using ATM's since we were in Ecuador this year and the ATM's were all out of action for 3 days!

Thanks in advance.

jules39 is offline  
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Nov 24th, 2004, 05:36 AM
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Balloon safaris cost $400/person in both the Mara and Serengit; best booked prior arriving so the operators know how many people to expect. And when in the Serengeti, it's a good idea that your lodge/camp is in the Central (Seronera) area, as the Balloons lift off very early morning.
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Nov 24th, 2004, 05:47 AM
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... sorry hit the post reply before finished

As to TCs - these are best for emergency purposes. They can be exchanged incountry, but there is often a fee assessed to do this, and if you exchange at hotel, the rate won't be favorable. The currency exchange is almost always opened at the Nairobi Kenyatta airport with favorable rates and here TCs more readily accepted but best to use USD for this. While credit cards are accepted in city centers for restaurants and major purchases, most lodges/camps when out on safari will add a surcharge for their use.

ATMs are available in NBO for Kenyan Shillings (Ksh); whereas in Tanzania there of official exchange bureaus for Tanzanian Shillings (TSh). We found it was best to just bring lots of USD in small denominations USD$1s, 5s, 10s, 20s for tips to guides/drivers, camp/lodge staff. You can also use local currency for the latter. Denominations over $20 can be difficult to exchange othen then at a bank or hotel.

USD should be relatively new (not torn, wrinkled, washed out); those bills that have new faces should be brought rather then the smaller faces; those that are tri-colored better over those that aren't. It's just that locals are well aware of the changes to our currency and because their own currencies often loose value, feel if ours aren't the newest, latest, greatest, they too have no value, which we know isn't the case... but when in Rome.........
Happy travels
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