Born Free Safari

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Feb 4th, 2004, 11:19 AM
  #1
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Born Free Safari

We are debating using Abercrombie & Kent / Micato and Born Free Safaris - they all have similar safaris we are interested in - Kenya / Tanzania. Born Free seem to be the cheaper of them all. We will be travelling in September. Does anyone have any input on Born Free Safaris?
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Feb 4th, 2004, 12:42 PM
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We also looked at all three of the tour companies you listed, and we also preferred Born Free because of its rates. They have a good reputation. Having said that, however, you may want to look into Kenya and/or Tanzania based safari companies as we found them to be even less. However, if you chose not too, I think you would be fine with Born Free.
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Feb 4th, 2004, 01:01 PM
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Can you recommend any Kenya / Tanzania based safari companies? We also checked into Thompson but they don't do Kenya
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Feb 4th, 2004, 01:23 PM
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omalei,

I researched Tanzania extensively and got possibly a dozen quotes from Arusha based operators.

I designed my own itinerary from start to finish and then had everybody quote it, including the type of vehicles that would be used.

The least expensive quote I received was from Tanzania Serengeti Adventures and they provided me with a long list of references, complete with email addresses. Their website address is as follows:

http://www.habari.co.tz/tsa/

I think others on here will suggest Roy Safaris, and they were also competitive, but about 15% more than Tanzania Serengeti Adventures.

Good luck.
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Feb 5th, 2004, 06:36 AM
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sandi
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Besides those listed, you can try:

www.essafari.co.ke (Kenyan based, do kenya, tanzania and southern Africa)

www.roysafaris.com (Tanzania based)

www.2afrika.com (NJ based, also have great airfares)

www.premiertours.com (Phila based, also have great airfares)

www.onsafari.com (CT based)

www.classicafrica.com (CT based, also with good airfares)

www.africasafaris.com (NY based)

Abercrombie & Kent is very expensive, and Micato is not far behind them. Of course, we don't know your budget, but the above are alternatives for you to check. Of course, more information can be more confusing, but compare as many as possible before making a decision.
 
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Feb 5th, 2004, 01:25 PM
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We used, and will use again, Roy Safaris out of Arusha, Tanzania. We found their service to be outstanding, rates very, very competitive and extremely professional. They contract to a fantastic Kenya outfitter, but do the Tanzanian portion themselves. After you decide where you want to go, type of accommodations, give them a shout. We will be using them again when we return to Tanzania in October. I know, I know ... Rocco, Sandi, Kavey, et al .. I sound like a broken record!!!
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Feb 12th, 2004, 02:31 PM
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We decided to use Born Free over a couple of other safari tour operators for a safari to Kenya and Tanzania in July of 2003 because they gave us the best price and said their service would be comparable to the bigger tour operators.
We paid high dollars to get the best guides and camps, and if I could do it all over again, I would have used another tour operator.
I do not want to get into specifics of what happened because it is a long story, but I would pay a little more for a bigger operator with a good reputation.
Needless to say, while the Kenya portion of our trip was fine, everything went wrong in Tanzania which prompted us to cut our losses and vacation short and come home early. Please be careful when deciding. Remember, you get what you pay for.
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Feb 20th, 2004, 07:24 AM
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Could you possibly contact me re: what happened with Born Free I am about to send a deposit.... email: [email protected]
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Feb 20th, 2004, 09:10 AM
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Hi Omalie,
I will email you as requested. You should be getting a reply a little bit later. Thanks.
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Mar 13th, 2004, 05:59 AM
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Divewop - I am also considering booking a trip with Born Free and would be intersted in knowing about your experience. Could you please email me as well concerning Born Free? My email is [email protected]

Thanks!
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Mar 13th, 2004, 12:28 PM
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We too are going to Kenya in June. I spent numerous hours looking into all types of Safaris, from Ambercrombi Kent to the basic pitch your own tent. What I find they all vary in price. Most of them all use the same lodges. My advice is to determine your own iternary and send it out to a few operators. We bought our own air so we got quotes for just the land. We arranged a 14 day safari and a 7 day beach extension in Mombasa (air included on that leg of the trip) I am not cheap. However I wanted an affordable trip with an tour group that I trusted. We went with Sun Trek Safari. I have sent and recieved numorous e-mails from Philomena, tour represenative. I know I made the right decision
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Mar 17th, 2004, 02:09 PM
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I too am planning a trip to Tanzania and was planning to use Born Free. Divewop, can you also tell me your experience with Born Free?
Please email me [email protected]
Also I have been trying for the last few days to get a response from Roy Safaris, and they still haven't responded. Are they really worth all this trouble? Or can someone recommend a good tour company which provides luxury accomodations (my honeymoon) without the Abercrombie & Kent prices?
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Mar 17th, 2004, 02:18 PM
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Tina12 - I can appreciate you're being anxious, especially planning a honeymoon, but know that there are times that emails "just don't get thru" to Kenya and Tanzania. It's not that Roy Safaris or any other tour operators aren't answering, they just may not have gotten the original email. You might have to email again and inquire if they've had email problems.
 
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Mar 17th, 2004, 05:45 PM
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Tina12: There have been on and off communications problems with Kenya and Tanzania. Some emails I sent were received, others were not. Remember, you are dealing with two countries that for all intent and purposes are third-world. And yes, I think they are worth the trouble since we are booking our second trip with them for later this year. Good luck with your planning.
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Mar 22nd, 2004, 09:57 AM
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JazzDrew and Tina12-Sorry I haven't responded to your posts but we have just gotten back (last night) from a trip to South Africa. If you are still interested in knowing what happened when we used Born Free, please let me know and I'll email you. Or you can email me at [email protected] if you'd like. Thanks
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Mar 29th, 2004, 03:46 PM
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Having traveled with Born Free three separte times over the last 15 years, I guess I'm a little baffled by some of the comments here. I thought their pricing was right in like with everyone else's, not too high and not too low. Pretty close to average if there is such a thing.
By our second trip we felt very confident in their services and knew that if anything went wrong, it was no doubt out of anyone's control - afterall we were on an adventure in the bush - and in a third world country. We also knew that no matter how much you pay or travel with, Africa is a place where there will be hiccups from time to time. I guess it all falls under one's expectations and joy of adventure when on a safari. When finances allow, we will do it again and again, and wouldn't hesitate to book it with Born Free.
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Mar 29th, 2004, 05:42 PM
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Being an avid traveler and scuba diver, I am also used to hiccups whenever I travel. I was also born in Africa so I am well accustomed to what one may encounter.
Our problems with Born Free weren't due to a third world country or being out in the bush or anything that someone who is an experienced traveler wouldn't come across sooner or later.
We had paid top $$ to Born Free and were not given what we paid for.
They agreed the problems were something that we should not have encountered and promised us a partial refund for our inconveniences.
It has been 9 months now and we have yet to receive a dime. They continuously have one excuse or another, will not call us, and did not call us upon learning of our problems but responded by email only.
I have saved every bit of correspondence between B.F. and ourselves in which they stated they would do the "honorable thing" and send us a refund. I will continue to save everything until the matter is resolved.
Just be careful and make sure when your tour operator says they are going to do something before, during or after the trip, that they keep their word.
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Apr 22nd, 2004, 11:53 PM
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Fascinating. Dama86 has registered ONLY to post on this thread - hasn't posted on Fodors before nor after.
I'm curious as to whether they are a real customer that has been asked by the operator to weigh in on his behalf or a completely fictional person.
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Apr 27th, 2004, 12:37 PM
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Yes, I'm a REAL person. And have been away visiting friends who don't have internet access, even in this day and age. I also don't spend a lot of time visiting chat rooms. Too busy with my own work.
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Apr 27th, 2004, 01:24 PM
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Dama
Since you hadn't posted here at Fodors before can I ask whether you were "asked" to do so by Born Free?
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