Theft on Safari

Jan 14th, 2006, 07:39 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 184
Theft on Safari

I did a search of the threads re safety of personal property while on safari. It makes sense not to leave valuables in your room/tent while out for the day. After reading an article about theft in Kenya written by Hans-Georg Michna I wonder if anything will be safe?? I'd be interested in some feedback about using the main lodge safes for most valuables. Is this the only foolproof option? We need a fairly substantial amount of cash for tipping our driver/guide and lodge staff. Another thought is for our noise cancelling headphones which we would like to have on the international flights but then will have to worry about while in Kenya! Wonder if we could leave them in the safe in the hotel in Nairobi and pick them up on our return? Any advice about this whole issue? Am I stressing needlessly??
travellin is offline  
Jan 14th, 2006, 08:17 AM
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 304
Hi travellin,

We used money belts for our cash, and put anything else of significant value that we didn't want to take on a game drive in a suitcase which we locked. We didn't have any problems.

wjsonl is offline  
Jan 14th, 2006, 09:34 AM
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 7,391
Our bags (including passports, air tickets, cash, wallets) were stolen out of our tent in one of the camps we were at. They were later recovered, fully intact as they were locked but it was a frustrating experience to say the least. We had carried all of our valuables with us at all times, except when we went canoeing and later that night the bags were stolen. I'd recommend either using the camp safe or carrying the valuables with you in a money belt or over the neck pouch.
matnikstym is offline  
Jan 14th, 2006, 09:44 AM
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 304
Matnykstem, that's incredible! I'm sure it's happened before, but I've never heard of suitcases being stolen out of tents. What camp was that at anyway? Jack
wjsonl is offline  
Jan 14th, 2006, 10:08 AM
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 7,391
It was at Chongwe River Camp in Lower Zambezi. In their defense, they did EVERYTHING they could to locate the bags. Called all the other lodges in the area to set up roadblocks, safari vehicles from the camps went out in the bush all night long and the next day, boats were out on the river searching all night. It was an all-out manhunt! It was the first time that had ever happened in Lower Zambezi and the whole community pitched in on the search. There were about 100 migrant workers building Chongwe House, a new luxury "mansion" available to rent, just up the hill from the tents and they figured one of the workers snuck down, took the bags (ours was the last occupied tent in camp), hid them in the bushes and would come back later for them. They were found 1.5 days later when we were on our way to Lusaka to the embassy. While waiting for the next flight to come from L.Z. with our bags, the Lusaka staff from Chongwe made our delay bearable. Nice lunch, made travel arrangements to Livingstone, gave us money, sodas etc. and made friends with their office staff. I guess it could happen anywhere and I don't hold Chongwe to blame and would go back and do recommend that camp. It was a beautiful, magical location. Don't take a chance, keep your valuables with you at all times or lock them in the safe!
matnikstym is offline  
Jan 14th, 2006, 12:11 PM
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 391
Yes. You can leave them in a safe. I'm sure the hgotels in Nairobi will accomodate if you are returning. The lodges in the Mara certainly have safes.

Pumbavu is offline  
Jan 15th, 2006, 09:40 PM
Posts: n/a
I'm glad, i read these posts.........although i do lock all my valuables, prior to game drives etc.,etc., i always assumed that all the posh tented camps etc etc were totally safe...........i usually have a travel pouch with my passport, tickets, travellers checks etc., and place it in the middle of my clothes in the luggage and lock it up. I usually, will leave all clothes out, that i need for the next day. I check up in the morning and do the same ritual again......

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