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Just curious...would other Fodorites like to see game lodges post their newsletters on Fodors?

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Apr 10th, 2004, 09:32 PM
  #1
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Just curious...would other Fodorites like to see game lodges post their newsletters on Fodors?

Disclaimer: I know that I probably ABUSE this board more than anybody, so other Fodorites may not share my opinion on this topic.

Sometimes I feel like this board could benefit from the monthly or quarterly newsletters that are sometimes put out by some game lodges. Personally, I love reading such reports and frequently visit sites for lodges that I am not even going to visit, like Robin Pope Safaris and others in the areas I am visiting, just to get a good feel about what is going on.

I know sometimes there is hostility on this board against advertising, but I do think that this is definitely entertaining reading, and sometimes the board does seem like it could use a little more action.

How do other people feel about this? And, if too many others were not opposed to it, how would be the best way of going about it...inviting the game lodge to post their report? Or, if we care to see such posts, should we just post them ourselves?

I would not like to see game lodges blatantly advertising on the board, but I do not really believe that these reports necessarily constitute advertising.

Thoughts?
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Apr 10th, 2004, 11:40 PM
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No. Rocco, this is too easily abused. There's a reason Fodor's has a rule against cut and paste quoting and one against advertising. What's wrong with people going to the site to read the newsletter there?
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Apr 10th, 2004, 11:45 PM
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Agree with Clematis
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Apr 11th, 2004, 03:32 AM
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sandi
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Sorry Roccco - rather not. I get a few newsletters from tour operators with updates as to what's happening all over Africa. Also a few newsletters direct from some camps/operators. They can be long, tedious - some information of iterest, other stuff is boring. It wouldn't be something I'd like to see take up space here. While I don't have a problem with an occasional cut/paste of something pertinent to a subject posted here - but newsletters. NO!
 
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Apr 11th, 2004, 04:07 AM
  #5
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Strongly agree with Sandi. I visit many sites to read newsletters and once in a great while I feel like sharing something here on one. I will usually put a link in a post rather than bring the whole report here. Too long, boring and self-serving in my opinion. What we share here is beyond what the camps tell us. Just my $.02.
 
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Apr 11th, 2004, 04:29 AM
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Ditto to the above from Clematis, Earlxx, Sandi and Liz!
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Apr 11th, 2004, 06:41 AM
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OK...in a close vote and keeping in strict adherence to African, or at least Zimbabwean, democratic elections, Rocco's six votes edge out the others five votes. JUST KIDDING!

I will respect the wishes of others and not invite anybody, but if there is anything that is really of interest then I may just post it myself, although this would not be more than once a week, or so. Just as I found that really great post from the guide at Selinda about his guiding highlights for the year, there are plenty of other interesting reports out there.
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Apr 11th, 2004, 06:53 AM
  #8
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Why not a just provide a link to a report? Here is my opinion of newsletters and others may disagree. They are to attract others to that camp, right? Do we really believe that all of those things happen every week? Do you suppose they might just get embellished a bit? If you're searching out a site looking for the best place to stay, I imagine some of the things just coincidentally also happened at another time. Perhaps the sitings have been low this month, or the weather was bad? I think you get the idea. I know this happened to us last year with the wildies crossings. Some reports had great crossings going on when we were right there and must have glanced away for a minute. I learned to take some of it with a grain of salt. If we do start reprinting that here, well I think overload is likely. Once in a while I think there really is something noteworthy, but still just a link to it gives us the option of reading the report. So my vote is still to provide a link or at MOST highlight a paragraph and just move that here. Liz
 
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Apr 11th, 2004, 07:17 AM
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Mark,

Thanks. I am just getting started on reading your website about the leopards. I think that I may have seen Mafufenyane, the dominant male, while at Singita two years ago. Would this be possible for him to be in that area in March, 2002? It does appear that Simbambili borders Singita (as well as Elephant Plains, Chitwa Chitwa and Djuma).

Mark, you seem like you would be able to answer this question, since you must have a fair share of the business to South Africa. Is there ANY relief in sight for Americans visiting South Africa, as far as the pricing goes? Or are the camps still filled this year, despite the weak U.S. economy and will we just have to wait until we get Bush out and/or the U.S. economy improves (thus, improving the Dollar to the Rand)?

The Sabi Sand (and the rest of South African lodging) just seems to be so very expensive right now, at least to this American. I mean look at even Simbambili, which seemingly is one of the smallest camps in the entire Sabi Sand and offers no Sand River frontage, yet charges 2,900 Rand per person per night sharing in LOW season, working out to $455 per night per person sharing.

Anyway, this is a different topic, and I do appreciate you posting about the leopards. Keep up the good work.
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Apr 11th, 2004, 07:59 AM
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Gosh, Roccco -- letters and emails to your congressmen, senators, and president might be be more appropriate than asking travel providers to cut you a break because of our economy on a public forum. And of course, don't forget to vote next fall!
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Apr 11th, 2004, 08:21 AM
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Uhoh Busted,

Try actually READING my post next time around.

I said, "Is there ANY relief in sight for Americans visiting South Africa, as far as the pricing goes?"

This question is not asking Taga Safaris for a special price for myself, but was intended intended to ask that through any conventions, meetings or other correspondences with the lodges, or South African travel associations, if there are any plans to lower the tariffs for non-South African travellers.

For example, right now you have Singita, who has very flexible pricing, for themselves at least. If the Rand goes over 9 Rand to 1 USD, then they reserve the right to raise their already ghastly prices.

I just think that South African lodges should close the gap between South African resident pricing and non South African pricing.

And as far as voting goes, I don't really believe in it. I can control my own destiny a lot better than any mortal politician ever will. I just happen to see a co-relation between a Bush in office and a horrible U.S. economy, not to mention unjustifiable wars (why is "democracy" required in Iraq but not Kuwait?), that is all.
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Apr 11th, 2004, 08:41 AM
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Mark,

Thanks...that was an amazing video of the hyenas steaing the Impala kill from the leopards!

What time of night was this video taken at Mala Mala?

Also, I am a bit confused about the leopards being called the Simbambili leopards since this was filmed at Mala Mala and Mala Mala does not appear to border Simbambili, at least not on the map that I have, instead being surrounded by Djuma, Londolozi, Nottens, and Lion Sands. Will you please clarify? Thanks.
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Apr 11th, 2004, 08:47 AM
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Never mind...I do see that previous videos were shot at Simbambili. Now, how do you keep up with these three leopards, as the Sabi Sand is not a small place. Are they monitored through a GPS tracking device? If not, how do you know if they are at Simbambili, Mala Mala or one of the other lodges such as Londolozi, Chitwa Chitwa, Elephant Plains, Djuma or Singita?
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Apr 11th, 2004, 09:16 AM
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Roccco:

I think this leopard documentary is a great idea.

It greatly enhances my safari experience if I see a specific animal on safari that has featured in a wildlife movie.

I have seen two documentaries on ''Tjololo'',also known as the Rock Drift Male who spends most of his time in Mala Mala.To then actually see him on safari is great.

Roccco go to Mala Mala's website and read their weekly cyberdiary-tell me what you think.

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Apr 11th, 2004, 09:40 AM
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Safarinut,

You know, you really have a way about singing the praises about Mala Mala. Now, even I am not immune! :0

I visited Mala Mala's website for the first time in ages and I was absolutely amazed at the relatively reasonable prices that are offered. Sure, $1,000 per night may not at first sound like a good price, but when comparing to the $2,000 per night that Singita charges and the $1,600? per night that Londolozi charges, $1,000 per night sounds like a bargain.

Trust me, I would have rather shelled out an extra $200 per person per night for my 3 night Djuma Vuyatela stay to instead stay at Mala Mala if I could do it over again. I mean $1,200 more for a happy ending to an otherwise great trip to Zambia and Cape Town? Not at all worth the savings to stay at Djuma Vuyatela.

I don't know when I will get to Mala Mala, but I am sure that it will be the next time that I am in the Sabi Sand. I do appreciate the fact that they price out their tariffs in U.S. Dollars, the only South African website that I have seen do this.
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Apr 11th, 2004, 09:41 AM
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Also, let me add that when I went to Singita in March, 2002, that Singita's prices and Mala Mala's prices were pretty close to each other, but I think that Mala Mala may have been $500 per night per person sharing all the way back then, and not raised their tariff, while Singita's tariff has nearly doubled, at least when pricing out in U.S. Dollars.
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Apr 11th, 2004, 09:44 AM
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>I will respect the wishes of others and not invite >anybody, but if there is anything that is really of >interest then I may just post it myself, although >this would not be more than once a week, or so.

Rocco, the responses to your question were 100% AGAINST posting these newsletters. If something is really great, then post a one line link.

And please reconsider voting. We need you.
Vote absentee, it is quick and convenient.
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Apr 11th, 2004, 10:09 AM
  #18
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Clematis,

In my heightened excitement, I may post a newsletter or two from South Luangwa properties, but I will not flood the board.

Now, regarding posting just a link or posting the entire newsletter, I am not sure if I see what the difference is between the two. If somebody doesn't want to read the whole newsletter, they are free to skip the thread.

Regarding voting, I am afraid that my vote would likely be wasted on a Libertarian or even a Green Party member before I would vote for a Republican or a Democrat. I am afraid that the only voting I will be doing in the foreseeable future is voting between Zambia, Botswana and South Africa. This year, I vote Zambia, but next year Botswana looks like the best candidate for the job!
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Apr 11th, 2004, 10:41 AM
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There is a big difference between posting a one line link and cutting a pasting an entire newsletter on this board that doesn't allow either advertising nor cutting and pasting.

And people who don't know you may interpret this as a form of advertising you are doing for an agency in order to get discounted rates.
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Apr 11th, 2004, 10:51 AM
  #20
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People who don't know ME?

Point well taken. I'll stick to the link.
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