planning a safari in Kenya for July 2009

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Jun 23rd, 2009, 11:38 PM
  #1
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planning a safari in Kenya for July 2009

Does anyone know anything about Waymark Safaris in Nairobi, or the man who works there, named Kennedy? Is this company reputable?
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Jun 24th, 2009, 01:44 AM
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karenfz - Karibu sana
you came to the right place

search "Kennedy" specifically on the Africa forum (otherwise you'll get Kennedy air-port etc')
you'll find many threads

Kennedy is almost a VIP, he's a celeb on this forum
many many recommendations
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Jun 24th, 2009, 05:00 AM
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Thank you! I did search out his name and found all those positive remarks! I am now feeling a bit better about placing our trust in someone I do not know.

Getting ready to visit Nairobi and go on a 10 day safari for the first time. So much to learn! Where to start?
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Jun 24th, 2009, 05:58 AM
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Karenfz
look at this Index of trip reports
an encyclopedic work carried out by LyndaS
http://www.fodors.com/community/afri...port-index.cfm

also see this thread
"African safari research: Where do I begin ???"
http://www.fodors.com/community/afri...o-i-begin-.cfm

also a 10 day Safari should include Mara, Samburu Nakuru
+ mt. lodge or similar maybe also Naivasha
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Jun 24th, 2009, 09:25 AM
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Having personally met Kennedy, I can assure you that he is a great guy and will take good care of you. Do you have any proposed itinerary, yet? July is coming up quite fast!
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Jun 26th, 2009, 10:24 PM
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Our 10 day itinerary includes Samburu, Mt. Kenya, Lake Nakuru, and Mara. Some lodges and some tented camps.

We are wiring Kennedy a deposit. But, then he asked us to pay the remaing amount in cash! Really? That doesn't seem like a great idea to me! Would traveler's checks work? I can't oicture traveling with thousands of dollars of cash!? Any thoughts?

Does any one know if mid-July gives us chance of seeing any part of the migration in Mara....or are we too early?
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Jun 27th, 2009, 04:58 AM
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If you don't want to carry cash and since now is within the 60/days of your safari arrival, many outfitters actually require full payment.

If wiring a deposit, then wire the entire amount. Then no need to carry so much cash.

TCs not a good idea as Kennedy would loose out on the exchange. The very reason we don't suggest visitors have TCs unless for emergency purposes.
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Jun 27th, 2009, 09:59 AM
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As you no doubt found my name in the searches you did, I can personally vouch for Kennedy as a super-honest incredible guide! He will do all in his power to deliver a wonderful safari to you, and you will come away with a new friend.

I agree 100% with Sandi- wire Kennedy the whole amount & that way you won't have to worry about carrying cash. And the number one most useless item on my packing list this year was travellers cks - what a laugh!!! We had a bear-viewing cancellation last year in Alaska so I had $800.00 in USD travellers cks hanging around, so instead of doing something intelligent & cashing thenm here before I left, I took them with me. Absolutely the most useless item I brought - I tried to cash them at a NATIONAL BANK in Karatu in Tanzania & they said 'no, we don't cash them'. Couldn't believe it. So, no problem I said, then we tried all through the airport at Jomo Kenyatta once we got back to Keyna & everyone there said no too!! We finally bullied a girl at a counter into doing it by pointing at her HUGE sign which said 'We cash travellers cheues for no commision' (only during daylight hours she said....) but then she said she would ONLY give us Kenya Shillings - at a DISCOUNTED rate - and THEN change it back at a commission into US money if we wanted USD. We just shook our head and went to use the ATM instead & got shillings. As soon as I got back to Canada I went to our bank and deposited them to our US acct. Crazy!
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Jun 27th, 2009, 04:16 PM
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I saw Kennedy just last week! Yes, you have come to the right place! He's very thankful for your support in these difficult economic times. One of his best drivers, Joe, needs an urgent hip replacement and there's no way to pay the $10,000.00 required. He's been limping for awhile and also suffers from some arthritis. Kennedy is very emotional about this and also distraught. I suggested, he set up a fund at a bank for Joe and we can contribute to it. Anyway, ....

I second everything LyndaS has to say about Kennedy. I booked a group of 8 with him last summer and it went off flawlessly. I wired a lot of money and also did carry a lot of cash at the end, as he needs cash to pay the park fees in US cash only. I gave it to him the minute we arrived and it was out of my hands. They like the US dollar!!! Cash saves the cost of converting from KES to USD and also the bank wire fees. However, he is very receptive to receiving all funds via transfer. Business in Africa is commonly transacted in cash, I think. This is new to us and makes us uncomfortable. It's expensive to use and accept credit cards for them. Kennedy can keep his prices low, by not charging for these conveniences. I trust him with my soul and my cash!!! Kennedy is a good man.

PS. Mid July this year, because it's been raining in the Serengeti, the migration is slow to move into the Mara. With a bit of luck, and lack of rain in TZ, you may see the beginning (zebras) if you're staying south of the Serena.

Post your itinerary.
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Jun 27th, 2009, 05:25 PM
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I'm sorry to hear about Joe. He drove us from the airport our first night when Kennedy was delayed in traffic.

I wired Kennedy all the amount due, but if he needs the US cash to pay the park fees, perhaps you can find out how much that is and wire him everything but that amount, then hand that over when you arrive.

Like the other posters, I trust Kennedy all the way.
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Jun 30th, 2009, 11:31 PM
  #11
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Thank you for your comments about Kennedy. It is such a relief! It is hard to connect with a stranger from so far away and know if it is wise to trust them. Thanks again!
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