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bandfotos Dec 10th, 2008 12:11 AM

Thomson or Africa Dream Safaris? Photo Tips?
Hi all,

I am about to break the bank and go to Africa for our first time. We have been looking into both Thomson Safaris and Africa Dream Safaris. Has anyone travelled with them? If so what are your thoughts? What did you like the most and what did you like the least. What was just ok and you wish you could change?

We are wanting a private safari vehicle to concentrate on our photography - if anyone has any tips on that as well I'll take them :)

Any thoughts/advice would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks in advance!

cary999 Dec 10th, 2008 01:11 AM

Do you now have photos posted (any kind) anywhere on the internet we could look at?

regards - tom

dssxxxx Dec 10th, 2008 05:31 AM

I do not think you can go wrong with either of your selected companies.

I priced out about 10 operators and found to my liking Roy Safari's. Both your choices were much more expensive, comparing apples to apples.

The search function in your friend.

Good luck in your search.

sandi Dec 10th, 2008 05:48 AM

Africa Dream tends to be higher priced than others. And, recently there were negative reports on Thomson with regards their relationship with local tribes - land grabs and murder of a reporter.

andybiggs Dec 10th, 2008 07:59 AM

I use Thomson Safaris for my trips, and could not be happier. Everything that I request and ask for out of their Boston office gets turned into action in Tanzania. They don't use agents, so any requests you make go directly to the company, and there is nothing lost in translation. And your questions get answers ASAP.

Regarding what Sandi is saying above, these are wild accusations and hearsay shouldn't play a part in the discussion. I am speechless at the accusations about a murder. Speechless. Until there is concrete proof about this, it shouldn't be slung around carelessly like this. As a business owner, if there was a story like this and somehow there was an accusation online that I was involved, it would be difficult to clear my name. Rumors spread quickly on the internet, yet reports of facts don't get reported or spread as easily. I know Thomson Safaris to be a wonderful company with extremely high ethics. I expected better from you, Sandi.

African Dream Safaris outsources to another outfitter on the ground in Tanzania, and they are also a good company to work with.

traveler318 Dec 10th, 2008 09:39 AM

I used ADS in July of this year and was very happy. Their price was over 10% better than Thompson (for a private safari) when I got quotes, and I liked ADS' offered accommodation better. I also found them more responsive to questions and requests for changes. That said, these were my top two companies after I got 6 proposals/quotes.

ADS provided a number of little extras that I appreciated: visas were included and were expedited on arrival; we had a picnic table and chairs that we used for bush breakfasts and lunches when not in a picnic area with tables; and a well supplied vehicle with cold drinks, snacks, binoculars, field guides, toilet paper, etc.

I don't think you can go wrong with either company. Have a great safari!

ShayTay Dec 10th, 2008 10:23 AM

In East Africa, it's fairly easy to work and book directly with the safari outfitter, such as Kibo Guides, whom I've used, or Roy's as dssxxxx mentions. You can check out the East Africa Trip Report Index for other outfitters. E-mail several of them for a price quote for the itinerary that you're interested in and see what you get back. Do they respond promptly? Are they helpful and address any issues you may have? You may find that you don't have to "break the bank" after all.

andybiggs Dec 10th, 2008 11:28 AM

Nyamera, how do you KNOW this to be true? Seriously. I would only send around these types of links if I knew that what I was doing was related to the truth. I have noticed that you are taking the time and effort to post these links all over the internet, which in my opinion isn't a fair shake. No matter what Thomson Safaris says will make you happy, so how does this play out?

Nyamera Dec 10th, 2008 11:43 AM

Andy, should I believe you and Thomson Safaris instead of Trent Keegan, Brian MacCormaic, Tanzanian journalists and a Tanzanian that I’ve been communicating with? You’re being a bit extreme in your defence of this safari company.

Shumba Dec 10th, 2008 11:52 AM

Andy Biggs trying to protect the hands that feeds him.

Some things never change.

Shumba Dec 10th, 2008 11:53 AM

When will Andy's posts go beyond some form of self promotion...?

andybiggs Dec 10th, 2008 12:24 PM

Nyamera, my answer is a 100% yes. I don't expect you to understand, based on what you are reading on the internet. I really don't.

Shumba, how is my defending a company that I send my business to considered self promotion? I am a customer of Thomson Safaris, and if any provider on the ground doesn't treat me or my customers in a favorable way then my business goes elsewhere. I have nothing to lose, nor hide.

I really don't think the piling on with more mud is helping any conversations online. For all I know you are Sniktawk's lateset nom de plume, since his account appears to be disabled or removed.

keah05 Dec 10th, 2008 02:24 PM

I too priced 8 or 9 outfitters and decided on Roys very happy with them private safari good vehicles and brilliant guide for much less than the two you mention ADS was orginally my first pick but do check out some others you may not need to quite break the bank after all, just damage it a lot. lol.
Why is so often when someone asks a perfectly innocent question is there always someone waiting to turn it into a personal debate. It puts me off replying to anyones plea.

pattyroth Dec 10th, 2008 09:42 PM

We used Roy Safaris for a great safari with a private vehicle. I took a lot of photos: If price were not a consideration, I would have been delighted to also go with Thompson as I read about them and if you've seen Andy's photography--well, that speaks for itself.

Nyamera Dec 11th, 2008 10:07 AM

pattyroth, have you really read about Thomson?

stobin Dec 11th, 2008 10:51 AM

Nyamera, take your personal business off this site.
You are using this forum in an inappropriate fashion. Your comments are not welcome here.

You have already been shut down for lack of facts on other forums. You have nothing new to say and as far as I’m concerned your credibility is shot. Your “facts” have been proven to be inaccurate and you have a very negative attitude.

If you have an issue with this company, take it up with the company. Leave us fodor-ites alone!

Shumba Dec 11th, 2008 11:11 AM


You Fodorites?

It appears that this is your first post!

Nyamera Dec 11th, 2008 11:13 AM

Stobin, where have I been shut down for “lack of facts”? A thread was closed on Irresponsible Tourism because the moderator thought that both Thomsons and I had said what we had to say. Who has “proven” my “facts” “inaccurate”? Where do you come from? Do you work for Thomson Safaris?

I think I should share links that many people still haven’t read. Especially when friends of
Thomson Safaris are providing misleading information.

pattyroth Dec 11th, 2008 01:05 PM

Yes, I had read about them and also talked to them.

stobin Dec 11th, 2008 01:28 PM

I have read the posts you have provided links to. The information and responses as of late have been interesting and I’m trying to keep an open mind.

I question your facts because the internet does not always lead to the truth. It appears that there is much out there that you don’t know.

Due to lack of complete facts, I believe your actions on this forum to be inappropriate, unfair and in breach of the rules of the forum.

To answer your questions, I read fodors often; yes, this is my first post; no I don’t work for Thomson Safaris.

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