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Finally - My Trip Report - Tanzania & Kenya - May/June '05

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Aug 29th, 2005, 12:32 PM
  #61
sandi
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jasher -

If anyone deserved to be bumped up to FC it would have been the honeymooners who were sitting right under that overhead compartment. Unfortunately, there weren't even seats there or in BC. And, no, we never did find out what was in that package - nor do I want to know.

As to your itinerary - I don't recall your earlier post and where exactly you were interested in staying. Please refresh me on this. But if it's the high-end properties in high-season - expect high numbers, though Joyce's numbers are better then most others - certainly less then those in SA or Botswana.

Nyamera -

Glad I was able to provide information normally not included in trip reports, but I was (always am) aware of my surroundings, so notice things that others might not, or not care much about. Though I have to admit that sometime it's not so terrible not to have good lighting - especially "the morning after the night before." Though this wasn't the case while we were on safari.

Leely -

What can I say - we experienced just about everything, but those maggots were - ugh! Totally disgusting! Even thinking about it now, almost three months later, makes me skirm. And you wonder why most every country prohibits the import of food products (that not prepared in a factory and so sealed). It had to be something that was "alive" at one time - animal or human. OK, enough of that.

Thanks all for your comments.
 
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Aug 29th, 2005, 12:50 PM
  #62
 
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Hi Sandi,

I'm looking at a week (or less) in the Mara in early September 2006. I've requested 3 days Rekero and 3 days Little Governor's or KT Bateleur, and so far I've received quotes from two different operators. Wildtrek's was the highest by far -- over $800 more than the next highest (Southern Cross). The per-night rates Wildtrek quoted me are higher than the rack rates (!). I'm still waiting for quotes from two more operators, Eco-Resorts and CCA.

Cheers,
Julian
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Aug 29th, 2005, 01:15 PM
  #63
sandi
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Jasher -

Surprising to hear an $800 difference, which is lots of money. Does the difference also include your flights and transfers between camps and in/out of Nairobi. I'm sure you're comparing apples-to-apples, but to be higher then rack is very strange indeed. If anything I've always found WTs numbers to be not much higher then what outfitters are offered at 'net'.

Hey, it's your safari and your pocket - go with whomever offers the best deal.
 
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Aug 29th, 2005, 01:27 PM
  #64
 
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sandi,
Falling maggots....eeeeewwwwwwwww!!!

So I'm not the only one who loses weight on vacation, eh? I was jumping up and down with joy when I returned from Kenya at 117 lbs! Haven't weighed that since high school. Now I'm back up to, well nevermind, though it did take me 6 months to gain it all back. Could it be my steady diet of chocolate at home? I need to go on vacation again!

Julian,
I too found Wildtrek's pricing to be the highest of 4 in-country tour operators that I contacted, but I'm sure it's also dependent on the specific camps you chose and each operator's contract rates with those camps. Another tour operator you can contact if you haven't already is Eastern & Southern Safaris. They were neither the highest nor the lowest in my case, but a good combination of reasonable prices and responsiveness to my requests/questions. My lowest quote actually came from Suntrek Safaris, but I didn't feel like we were really communicating well. Good luck with your plans!
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Aug 29th, 2005, 01:44 PM
  #65
sandi
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yeh, Patty - maggots!

I even have a problem typing those letters. Well, that was then. Can't imagine what other things flight attendents have to deal with. Well, I do kind of as I have many friends who have been and the tales they tell - you wouldn't want to know. Thankfully, they're all happily removed the cabin and have their feet firmly planted on the ground - retired with good pensions.

Yes, I do find vacations very good for the weight and it's not like I don't eat (except for the 1 meals I skipped at Saruni) regardless where I'm vacationing. It's just that the lbs come off. So, vacation is better. Gotta buy those lottery tickets and keep the fingers crossed with the hope of a win. Even a small win! I won't be piggy about it - a million or less is just fine for me. LOL!
 
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Aug 29th, 2005, 01:50 PM
  #66
 
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I hope to win the lottery too, but I keep forgeting to buy tickets
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Aug 29th, 2005, 02:15 PM
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Hi Sandi,

Both quotes include transfers from Nairobi and between the camps. I'm not sure why Wildtrek comes out at so much more, but maybe they dom't send a lot of business to these particular camps and therefore can't get the same rates as Southern Cross.

Cheers,
Julian
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Aug 29th, 2005, 02:31 PM
  #68
sandi
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jasher -

Since few, if any, outfitters send an unbundled itinerary (separate air, lodge/camp, transfers, etc.), how did you determine that the individual rates were over rack? You should have gotten a total price with supplements + or - for one camp over another. Do tell!

I doubt it has anything with the number of client they send to these camps or whether they have contract rates or not (they do and have) - my question is - "over rack" That's the strange part.
 
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Aug 29th, 2005, 02:44 PM
  #69
 
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Hi Sandi,

Wildtrek sent me a 'first night + additional night' quote for each of the camps I was interested in. For example, Kichwa Tembo Bateleur was $900 for the first night and $725 for each additional night (rack rate for KTB is $630 on CCA's website). Rekero was $800 for the first night and $625 for each additional night (rack rate is $500). The first night price includes return flights from WIlson Airport, but NOT transfers to/from Wilson (Southern Cross includes these). Transfers between camps are $300 per vehicle (Southern Cross includes a transfer in its quote).

Cheers,
Julian
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Aug 29th, 2005, 02:55 PM
  #70
sandi
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jasher -

OK I see. Though very surprising.
Hey, go with the best deal. Time to put this subject to bed.

I'm outta here for the day. Tomorrow folks.
 
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Aug 29th, 2005, 03:01 PM
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Julian,
Where did you find the rack rate for Rekero listed? On their website?
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Aug 29th, 2005, 04:45 PM
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Hi Patty,

Yes, it's on their website.

Cheers,
Julian
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Dec 26th, 2005, 09:51 AM
  #73
 
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Sandy,

I am new to this site. Just joined today, but in skimming the posts, you seem to be VERY knowledgeable. My husband and our 11-year old son year old and 14 year old daughter and I are flying to Dar es salaam in early June to vist friends there.

After staying a few days with our friends we plan on flying to Aruhsa on June 9 to begin a 5 night/6 day safari. I have been overwhlemed with reviewing operators and accomodations. DO you have any suggestions? Our budget for the safari portion, inlcuding airfare from Dar to Arusha is around $7,000 tp 8,000. We might be able to go a little higher if necessary.

We like the looks of the semi-permanent tented camps or the smaller lodges. We do not want to stay at the larger lodges. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks.
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Dec 26th, 2005, 05:41 PM
  #74
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janejean -

The beginning of June '06 is pretty much fully booked at permanent and seasonal camps (the Central and/or Western Serengeti) in the Northern Tanzania Circuit... the area reached from Arusha.

Since you will already be in DAR, I would suggest you visit the Selous or Ruaha Parks which are a short distance from DAR by air. It's more likely to find space here for the short time you have available.

If this is something you'd like to consider check out www.africaserendipity.com and use the contact page.
 
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Dec 27th, 2005, 09:22 AM
  #75
 
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janejean,
I agree that you should consider a southern Tanzania safari as an alternative. Here's a trip report covering Mikumi, Ruaha, and Selous in June that will give you an idea of what it's like - http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...4&tid=34649444
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Dec 27th, 2005, 09:25 AM
  #76
 
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And here are the photos that go along with that trip report - http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...4&tid=34656478
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Dec 27th, 2005, 09:38 AM
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I just topped Dick's southern Tanzania photos thread asking him to update his Kodak Gallery link as it seems to no longer work. I just tried it and got the 'no album found' message - is it working for anyone else?

sandi,
BTW I got the same message when I tried your album link. Would you mind doing the same (sending yourself an invite through Share Photos and pasting the url here)? I'd love to look through your photos again. Thanks!
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Dec 27th, 2005, 10:01 AM
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Patty, just finished the effort with Kodak as per your thoughts. You, Sandi, and others are really super with help to numersous persons on this board. Happy Holidays! Dick
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Dec 27th, 2005, 10:58 AM
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Thanks for updating your photo link, Dick. Happy holidays to you too!
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Dec 27th, 2005, 04:26 PM
  #80
sandi
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Patty -

Thanks for the reminder!

It seems when Kodak updated their photo upload program (a few months ago) they changed all the original links. Both Jack and LyndaS brought this to my attention and while I (as the owner) can get into the original with no problem, below is the current new link:

http://www.kodakgallery.com/I.jsp?c=...&x=0&y=-qa0w3g


 
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