Predators or 2 Afrika for Tanzania Safari

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Jul 2nd, 2005, 12:38 PM
  #1
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Predators or 2 Afrika for Tanzania Safari

Since 2Afrika uses Predators as their supplier, is there a reason to chose one over the other? Is there a difference in price? Their itineraries seem very much the same and they stay at the same places. The main diffence I can see is that 2Afrika has a US toll-free number and includes air as an option. Anything else?
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Jul 2nd, 2005, 08:05 PM
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You mentioned that you'd prefer to join a group tour with your friend. Does Predators have set group departures or are their itineraries private? I couldn't really tell from their website. It looks like they would be private as it says daily departures based on 2 passengers traveling, but I'm not really sure.
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Jul 3rd, 2005, 04:28 AM
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We bookled the trip through 2afrika. They used Predator for the company in Africa to take us from place to place.

If I ever go again, I would use 2afrika AGAIN! They put together a great itinerary and were nice to work with. AND their prices are great compared to others!!!!!

Many paid more than we did ...without the air... and we all were at the same places and did the same things.
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Jul 3rd, 2005, 05:13 AM
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I think the point of this thread was whether to book direct or not! If 2Afrika use Predators, and Predators sell the exact itineraries on their own web site (seemingly cheaper), then why pay a middleman?

Someone once did a breakdown of the costs on the Frommers BB, and it turned out that 2Afrika is quite a bit more expensive than booking direct, while getting a private safari versus a group tour of up to 60 people!

However, not all have the time and patience to deal with in-country outfitters direct so I can completely understand the willingness to pay a bit more for ease of mind. And 2Afrika's airfares are great if you procrastinated on booking your trip!

So I am on the fence here.

I wonder though. How does 2Afrika respond to questions such as Evelyns'?

One possible explanation? If price cannot be the reason, then there are clearly a lot of people who like to do group tours to Africa - and larger groups are apparently more popular?
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Jul 3rd, 2005, 02:23 PM
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Our reason to go with 2afrika instead of Predators was based on our research and availability of airfare - while the in-country portion of the trip was cheaper with Predators, this advantage was more than outweighed with airfares we could obtain.

Also we were going to 2 countries and the transfer between them and companies handled by one organizer was definitely good.

My opinion would be
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Jul 3rd, 2005, 02:25 PM
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Our reason to go with 2afrika instead of Predators directly was based on our research and availability of airfare - while the in-country portion of the trip was cheaper with Predators, this advantage was more than outweighed with airfares we could obtain.

Also we were going to 2 countries and the transfer between them and companies handled by one organizer was definitely good. 2Afrika did a fine job overall, and we did enjoy our experience very much.

My opinion having done the one trip would be that you should price the airfare out for yourself - if you can do the trip for less than the 2Afrika combination fare, then there is no reason not to do so. That is what we did and would do again for another trip.
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Jul 3rd, 2005, 02:28 PM
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Not sure why the first half of the message posted and then the full one ?! Anyone else having this problem? Sorry if it was my fault!
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Aug 5th, 2005, 07:07 AM
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Just returned from a Tanzania Safari (July26,2005)that we booked through 2Africa. Glad we did! Our entire group had multiple problems with Predators. Will expand on if anyone is interested. Predators did not try to correct or even apologize for their mistakes. Talked to Ken, at 2Africa, when we returned and were amazed at the service he provided. He went above and beyond what he had to do to correct/make up for the problems we encountered. We will definitely travel with 2Africa again but will never travel with Predators. I would strongly advise talking to 2Africa before booking. Enjoy your trip. The animals and scenery were great!
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Aug 5th, 2005, 07:28 AM
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JTodd I would be interested in hearing what kind of problems were had.

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Aug 5th, 2005, 07:30 AM
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JTodd
Please Please give us a trip report with the good, the bad and the ugly.
Thks
Sarvo
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Aug 5th, 2005, 07:37 AM
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Oh yes I also definately want to hear the good stuff too..I guess I assumed that was coming!! Then I can relive the joys of our trip to Northern Tanz!
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Aug 5th, 2005, 08:55 AM
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I have a different take on this!

If you book a trip with company A who subcontracts with company B, then company A should be responsible!

Company B has no previous relationship with you. All they know, is what was passed on, agreed upon (and paid for) by company A.

When the cheap lawn furniture you bought at Walmart breaks, you return it to Walmart not the manufacturer - isn't ease of mind one of the reasons why we buy at Walmart?
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Aug 5th, 2005, 09:11 AM
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JTodd,
I'd also be interested to hear what problems you had with Predators and what 2afrika did to make up for them.
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Aug 5th, 2005, 09:13 AM
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Also did you book a custom private itinerary through 2afrika or was this one of their set group departures?
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Aug 5th, 2005, 12:10 PM
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Climbhighsleeplow, you are exactly right if company B fulfilled their contractual obligations.

The trip was a group departure. I'm glad we did it that way. We met some really nice people and a few interesting ones as well.

First the good. We had some really good animal viewing. Saw a cheetah make a kill eat it and then a vulture carry away part of the carcass. Saw several leopards, one at about 20-25 feet. Many lions, one pride of approx 22 with lots of cubs, at about 15-20 feet. Of course, plenty of elephants giraffes, zebras, gnus, etc. One croc. We saw about all we expected. We got really lucky with several of these.

The bad, several in the group were not picked up at the airport as per itinerary. They called Predators and were told to get a taxi. Predators did not reimburse them. Two of the lodges were changed at the last second without notice or discussion. At Tarangire the group was split with some staying at the original lodge in the park while the majority of us stayed at a tented lodge 25 minutes outside the park. Obviously, we lost almost an hour (round trip,each time) just getting to the park. We were told we would have boxed lunches so we would not have to come back but the lodge refused. In the Serengeti we were scheduled to stay in the center at Serana lodge but Predators switched us to Lobo lodge. This was approx 2 hours northwest. The animals were concentrated in the center of the park with very few around Lobo. The second day we drove around Lobo in the a.m. and went for 3 hours without seeing another outfitters car. There was good reason for this. There were NO animals except for a few gazelle herds. Most disappointing was my wife and I had scheduled/payed for (months earlier) a balloon ride on our last full day. It was on the final itinerary that we received and that Predators received. Predators did not tell us until the day before, when we inquired about the arrangements, that we would not be doing the balloon ride. We asked for an explanation and were told multiple things. Two days later at the "exit interview" Ms Khan of Predators first blamed us, we asked how it was our fault and she then blamed 2Afrika, next it was the balloon companys fault and they could not pick us up. We informed Ms Khan that the company did indeed run a shuttle to Lobo and we (our driver) had spoken to him when he was returning with people. At this point Ms Khan walked to the door opened it and pointed outside and told us to GET OUT. We were supposed to be transported from the Predators office to the Kili airport. She refused to allow the driver to take us and we were "allowed" to get out at the Mt Meru hotel. According to Predators, another driver would come and pick us up. They did not and we got a taxi to the airport. We never did discover why Ms Khan did not make the reservations.

I will not go into what 2Afrika did but say that Ken was most gracious and generous with his solution. We did have the proof that the problems were on Predators end and not 2Afrika.

All in all it was an enjoyable trip. We went to see the animals and did. I hope when you go you have only our good experiences.
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Aug 5th, 2005, 01:19 PM
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JTodd, what a nightmare! I'm so sorry that you and your wife had such a bad experience; I do hope that you won't let it put you off going again. Thanks for being open about the problems as this will help other travellers in the future.
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Aug 5th, 2005, 01:31 PM
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Jtodd

Thanks for your posting!

This is such an interesting twist to the whole discussion about using in-country outfitters vs. overseas agents!

When I book direct with a Tanzanian oufitter, I always expect a few unexpected turns of events. I am willing to take some risk in order to save money and to customize my safari. I am also willing to go toe-to-toe with some owner to get my safari back on track if needed!

If I book with an overseas agent, I expect to get what I pay for - ease of mind. If something goes wrong, I simply pick up the phone and the agent him/herself or a local representative (under direction of the agent) takes care of my problem! This is why I paid more!

If I have to run around trying to rescue my hard-earned safari, then I have to ask if it was all worth it?

I've read postings here explaining that agents "get" the best guides, that clients from prolific agents are treated better, and that agents take care of all details!

Overbooking at lodges, for example, is standard practice at the main lodges in Tanzania. Outfitters know this and their agents should too!

It does not surprise me that it happened. It surprises me that the agent was not aware of it beforehand and did seemingly little behind the scenes to amend the itineraries accordingly - hence the missed balloon flight.

It is also surprising that the outfitter seemingly cared little about their prolific agent and their clients!
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Oct 3rd, 2005, 03:00 PM
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My husband and I, along with a friend, just returned from 2Afrika's "13 day Affordable Tanzania Safari". WOW!!!!! It was GREAT! Predators Safari Club were the providers in Tanzania, and everything was wonderful. Everyone we dealt with thru Predators were helpful and sincerely wanted to make our African experience extraordinary. They certainly succeeded. There was a change in our itinerary for the 2nd night, and we were put up in a tented camp instead of a lodge. It was the BEST! We were served delicious meals, had a roaring fire going into the night, and were guarded by Maasai tribesman . Other than that, all of the arrangements were as planned, and were perfect! Our Predator guide, Godfrey, was warm, friendly and knowledgeable. We are very happy that we went thru 2afrika, as all the arrangements: flights, transfers, vouchers, hotels, safaris, etc. were all planned for us, with no stress to us. AND their rates were great! I have nothing other than praise for both 2Afrika (Chad and Ken were basically who we dealt with) and the Predators Safari Club.
P.S. For anyone going to Africa, remember 2 things: electricity and hot water,even in the best of lodges, is only available for 5 hours in the AM and 5 hours in the PM. We were not aware of this, but had NO problem adjusting. Second, if possible, bring candy and treats, as well as pencils, crayons, small toys for the children. They are sooo grateful for the small gifts that people give them!
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Oct 3rd, 2005, 05:25 PM
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JTodd,

Sorry about the problem with your safari. Those are unexcusable. Thank you for frank about what happened. May you next safari be a success.
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Oct 3rd, 2005, 07:17 PM
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RuthFrances-how about a full trip report and pictures? were you on the Labor Day tour?
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