Safari Payment Question

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Sep 27th, 2005, 04:38 AM
  #1
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Join Date: Sep 2003
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Safari Payment Question

I'm in the process of finalizing a safari with Roy's and I have some questions about how most people handle payment. I have been told that once everything is finalized, we are to wire 30% of the total direct to Roy's in Tanzania. I had read this is common practice so I'm pretty comfortable with it. However, I was also told that final payment must be wired 60 days prior to our arrival. I was under the impression that the balance was paid upon arrival. Even though Roy's has gotten some good recommendations on this board, it makes me nervous to think they will have our full payment prior to even picking us up from the airport. Especially since they do not even accept credit cards. What is the normal process for providing full payment on a safari? Thanks for your help!
RedChicky is offline  
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Sep 27th, 2005, 04:57 AM
  #2
sandi
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Whether with cash, credit cards or wires, most itineraries have to be paid for 60-days prior arrival. Unless booking in less then 60-days then payment has to be made in FULL WHEN BOOKING.

You have to decide whether you want to wire the final payment amount, or carry it with you - as cash or travelers checks (personal checks aren't accepted). Many people don't want to chance having that much cash or even travelers checks on them when traveling. But, if this is what you'd prefer, check with Roy's if this would acceptable.

To-date, regardless how visitors have handled their final payments, or with which of the reputable Tanzanian outfitters, we haven't heard from any travelers having problems once they've arrived in country.
 
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Sep 27th, 2005, 06:07 AM
  #3
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
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Just to reassure you, we paid in full 60 days prior to our trip with Roy's and had no problems.
schlegal1 is offline  
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Sep 27th, 2005, 06:12 AM
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One of the reasons that they demand payment 60 days prior to arrival is to ensure payment. If they allowed payment of 70% of the price on arrival, I'm sure there would be some who didn't show up (for whatever reason) and then the operator would absorb the loss.

I am leaving for a trip to visit the polar bears in Churchill, Manitoba at the end of October, and I paid a deposit in January and the balance in July.

For all my trips to Africa, I have paid in advance, and have had no problems. I haven't worked with Roys, but they have an excellent reputation.
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Sep 27th, 2005, 06:32 AM
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RedChicky,
Each tour operator sets their own payment policies, so while some may accept payment on arrival, others may not. I wouldn't feel uncomfortable wiring the balance in advance, but check with them to see if cash or traveler's check on arrival would be acceptable if this would make you feel more comfortable.
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Sep 27th, 2005, 06:48 AM
  #6
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
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Has anyone ever had to cancel their plans last minute after paying the initial 30% deposit? Were you able to get it back or allowed to re-schedule? Did you all take out trip Insurance? Which Insurance Company?
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Sep 27th, 2005, 07:04 AM
  #7
 
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Vacationer1,
I think you should contact your tour operator and ask them what their cancellation policy is. And how 'last minute' is last minute? Usually there's a penalty free cancellation period up to a certain number of days prior to departure, then the penalty increases as it gets closer to departure. They should provide you with a clear policy prior to booking and paying your deposit. Then it's up to you to decide if you need to purchase insurance given your personal risk tolerance.

As for re-scheduling, I'd also contact your tour operator directly and get them to respond to your question in writing. It's possible that policies change or an exception was made for a certain individual, so I think it's better to get a direct answer from them.
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