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WE KNOW AFRICA

Welcome to the African Travel safari blog. In this space, we share inspirational stories and ideas on adventures in Africa, plus our latest social posts! 

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COVID Vaccination Requirement on 2022 Group Safaris

November 15th, 2021, by Jonathan Brannan

Starting Jan. 1, 2022, guests traveling in non-family groups of 10+ and on African Travel’s set group departures will need to provide proof of an approved COVID-19 vaccination (Pfizer, Moderna, Astra Zeneca Vaxzevria, or Johnson & Johnson), before joining their safari and upon arrival to their destination. Guests will also need to comply with specific PCR testing requirements imposed by airlines and/or governments, which may differ from country to country.

“This decision ensures our commitment to our guests that their well-being is our top priority,” said Sherwin Banda, president of African Travel, Inc. “It is essential that we take personal responsibility to help protect each other, the people and the places we visit.”

To show proof of vaccination, all guests will be asked to provide an authentic COVID-19 vaccination certificate - electronic or paper showing date and time of the vaccination(s) - with the final dose given at least 15 days before the start of their safari. Any testing that is required pre-travel will be the responsibility of the guest to organize, and our safari specialists will facilitate any additional testing requirements for travelers while traveling.

African Travel’s safari vacation packages which feature set group departures to Egypt, Kenya, Tanzania and Southern Africa are truly intimate, averaging no more than 12 guests. Each of African Travel’s journeys are tailor-made and clients can add additional experiences based on interests.

“Guests can feel safe knowing that when they join a set departure or group hosted by their advisor, they are traveling with others who are vaccinated,” said Banda. “If clients prefer a different style of travel whether that’s a private vehicle or in their own bubble, we can customize experiences unique to each traveler’s well-being needs.”

African Travel’s peace of mind promise includes a dedicated and experienced team of safari specialists who look after every detail, providing a safe, worry-free experience. Pre-departure tips and links to paperwork as well as itineraries with time saving testing allows more time to relax or safari. Vetted preferred partners that adhere to strict standards ensure safety, security, and hygiene. Safari investments are protected with options for travel insurance that include cancel for any reason and Future Travel Credits.

The promise also includes 24/7 concierge care. With local offices in Africa and experts based across North America, advisors and guests can always reach local hosts and safari specialists who rapidly respond and make changes to any services or itineraries if the need arises.

For more information on African Travel’s well-being commitment, visit, https://africantravelinc.com/content/booking-policy.

 

To book an exciting dream safari contact African Travel, Inc.

at 1 (800) 421-8907.

 

Our CEO Unpacks the Secrets to a Better Vacation

October 14th, 2021, by Jonathan Brannan

After returning from a week-long Cape Town adventure to find new experiences for clients, our CEO Lucille Sive found a Rainbow Nation ready to welcome visitors. We asked Lucille to share some tips on how to get the most out of traveling in her native homeland.

An Organized Traveler is a Happy Traveler

Lucille enjoying the quiet rooftop view from the Twelve Apostles Hotel & Spa.

2021 has been a challenging time for everyone wanting to travel, with regulations and local laws often changing. Our safari specialists have a deep understanding of each country's entry and exit requirements and worked with Lucille to provide the most up to date information and fill out forms prior to departure. Our ground operations team ensured an easy transit experience through customs.

“Working with our African Travel specialists really did reduce the stress after the flight. I could see other people frantically preparing forms and other documents while leaning against the airport walls.”

“Like any trip the extra pre-planning really does pay off and a traveler who is organized will reap rewards,” she added.



Go With the Flow

View of Table Mountain from Bloubergstrand.

While you can plan extensively, travelers still need to be flexible and embrace change. Local staffing issues and the weather can happen. However, it is how your local hosts help manage these unforeseen circumstances.

“When I went into some stores you had to wait for a moment as storekeepers safely managed capacity. And when we found Camps Bay to be jam packed, our guide brought us to Bloubergstrand Beach for brilliant views looking back at the city and Table Mountain,” said Lucille. “We ended on top of Signal Hill to enjoy the paragliders, which now I want to do on my next visit.”



Share Favorites and Preferences

Lucille's favorite vegetarian sushi at the Twelve Apostles Hotel & Spa.

Don’t forget to include any preferences before leaving. Whether that be religious, dietary, celebrating special occasions, or phobias, sharing them will only help enhance a visit. It is not an inconvenience to ask, we are here to ensure you have the best experience possible.

“I am a vegetarian, and on our first night at the Twelve Apostles Hotel a beautiful plate of vegetarian sushi was waiting for me. It was the best I’ve had. It really is the little touches and experiences that our team and partners provide that make a trip special.”



Utilize the Local Hosts and Guides

Lucille taking part in a samosa making clas.s

Now more than ever it is important to use the local knowledge of your hosts since many experiences or restaurants have changed or closed. No matter what you are looking for our local guides know best.

“Using our safari specialist's recommendations for the best walks and local restaurants made for a very relaxing experience. You really need to work with those who are up on the latest compared to old info you may find on google. We ate and drank our way through Franschhoek with a memorable lunch at Le Lude Estate and enjoyed the Anthonij Rupert state-of-the-art winemaking facility. I even discovered some of the vintage cars at the winery,” shared Lucille. 



Making Travel Matter

Lucille donated toys and blankets to a local school.

One of the main objectives for Lucille during her journey was to give back to the local community. On behalf of African Travel, she donated blankets and toys to a local school.

“While I like to spend time and include at least one MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® experience during a trip, everyone is different. An African Travel journey will always include a sustainable experience that helps the locals and wildlife. Guests can get as involved as they want. This can be just knowing that where they are staying supports tourism efforts or their trip helps with a donation to wildlife or a child’s education.

“I loved seeing the smiles on the children’s faces. We also source gifts from local women. There are so many of these sustainable experiences we offer for those who want to get more involved,” added Lucille.



There’s a Whole World Out There

There is one thing we believe to be true here at African Travel, most people come to Africa for the wildlife, but they return for her people. As many times as Lucille has embraced the welcoming Africans, the people surprised her again.

“Everyone is so excited to see foreign guests. South Africans are ready to live again…although carefully. I was moved by their joy for life and every interaction energized me.”

The trip left Lucille excited for future travels and wanting more nature experiences.

“It is important to connect with nature, wildlife and the people and take a moment to enjoy your experience. I am so glad that I made the trip, and I am ready for my next adventure to Kenya in early 2022.”

World Tourism Day 2021

September 24th, 2021, by Jonathan Brannan

An interview with Nadine Pinto, TreadRight Foundation's Sustainablilty Manager

 

As an avid traveller with a deep passion for sustainability, I’m so grateful to be able to combine my interests and skills to build our sustainability strategy, How We Tread Right, at African Travel. To make travel mutually beneficial for travellers and the destinations, it’s critical that the industry manages its impacts. One way we’ve doing this is by introducing MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experiences on our itineraries and I’m most proud to be one of the architects behind this program. Back in 2019 the TreadRight team was posed with a question from our Travel Experience Teams: How do we ensure experiences go beyond a “feel good factor” and have a real impact that positively affects communities, wildlife and the planet?

Now, our Travel Experience Teams are incredible people – they are a fascinating combination of detail oriented, efficient and creative who work magic to make wonderful things happen. So naturally a checklist of criteria came to mind – if the experience met a minimum number of criteria, it could be considered a MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experience. But we had to ensure the criteria was rigorous, fair and objective. The UN Global Goals fit here perfectly – as a group of 17 goals that governments, businesses and society are striving towards. The criteria comes directly from the targets and indicators set by the United Nations. Criteria? Check. (And ps. you can check them out here!)

 

The next challenge was a creating a simple and effective way for our teams to log these MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experiences to ensure they qualified according to our criteria.  I thought about this for a while and had a crazy idea – could all those critically important Buzzfeed quizzes I took in University while I was putting off studying have a role to play here? Buzzfeed quizzes are much less sophisticated (What potato describes my personality? – Mashed potatoes it seems!) But surely there was a way to take the concept and build something like a “Which Global Goal does this experience advance?” questionnaire. 

And that’s what we did. We built the MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experience E-Assessment tool, now relied on by our Travel Experience team as an easy, self-serve questionnaire with the United Nations Global Goal criteria built in to help teams determine whether an experience is a MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experience, and which Global Goal it advances.

Now, not only have our MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experiences been recognized and accredited by giants including Harvard professors and Fast Company, but with the slow return of travel they're finally being put into action on the ground to have a real, lasting impact – on both travelers who are re-evaluating their footprint in a post-Covid world, and on the communities and conservation organizations who've been waiting patiently for travel's return, upon which their livelihoods rely. I can’t wait for our guests to experience them!

SOUTH AFRICA'S NATURAL WONDERS

 

 

 

10 Days - Cape Town | Grootbos Private Nature Reserve | Shamwari Game Reserve

Grootbos has coined Living the Futures to explain the way of life on this nature reserve and you’ll find it in every experience from the 4x4 botanical safari to the stories shared by the gifted staff. You’ll see the same passion at Shamwari Private Reserve as you meet the wildlife caregivers and safari guides.

 

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PLATINUM BOTSWANA 

 

 

 

11 Days - Johannesburg | Makgadikgadi Pans |Selinda Reserve | Okavango Delta


Recharge at the new Xigera Safari Lodge while enjoying bespoke safari experiences that thrill and educate. Delight in the Magic of the Makgadikgadi while learning about one of the largest animal migration routes, finding a treasure trove of ancient artifacts, and taking a fascinating walk with the Zu/'hoasi Bushmen.

 

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FAMILY SAFARI IN KENYA

 

 

 

9 Days- Nairobi | Laikipia | Maasai Mara


Every lodge visited on this journey features something unique from meeting the mammas and local children at House in the Wild to re-wilding at Kenya’s first Bush School for children. 

 

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