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How to go about planning my first African luxury safari?

How to go about planning my first African luxury safari?

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Old Nov 2, 17, 11:01 pm
  #61  
 
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Originally Posted by wr_schwab View Post
And a 5th.

I used them several years ago to book a trip to Kruger and Victoria Falls. They were more then willing to work with me to design the trip that I wanted. They were also extremely helpful when I arrived in JNB for my onward flight to VFA upon discovering SQ lost my luggage.
And a 6th. They were fantastic and were willing to book only what we needed their help with. And they introduced us to Benguerra Island in Mozambique. Pricey but definitely the best way to kick off our honeymoon.
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Old Nov 3, 17, 12:32 am
  #62  
 
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[QUOTE=MacMyDay;28933908]We did our first safari in the Singita Kruger Park lodges last month and had the most incredible time. I'm not going to rank the properties themselves anywhere near the best I've ever been, but the experience was right up there. It was a lot better than I thought it would be and I would highly recommend it.

Singita is definitively one of the (if not the one) highest end lodges in Africa and with price to match, these look beautiful. This particular lodge been on my wishlist for years since I lived in SA
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Old Nov 3, 17, 5:18 am
  #63  
 
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Donít use True Africa - Asilia put me in touch with them. Terrible service.
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Old Jan 8, 19, 10:29 am
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Hi - sorry to dig up this thread but it seemed relevant to my question.

I have recently received a quote from two different tour operators for 4 nights at the Jamala Madikwe, including Fedair flights from JNB. One price was about $9,900 and the other was slightly over $14,000. The same dates can be booked directly with the lodge and they can book my Fedair flights for me, which comes to about $6,400 (there is a 4th night free promo that gives 4th night for 75% off). Can someone please let me know if I'm totally missing something here? The tour operator prices seem really off the wall even if you figure they are giving me rack rates.

Thanks
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Old Jan 8, 19, 10:50 am
  #65  
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Originally Posted by drewdawg199 View Post
Hi - sorry to dig up this thread but it seemed relevant to my question.

I have recently received a quote from two different tour operators for 4 nights at the Jamala Madikwe, including Fedair flights from JNB. One price was about $9,900 and the other was slightly over $14,000. The same dates can be booked directly with the lodge and they can book my Fedair flights for me, which comes to about $6,400 (there is a 4th night free promo that gives 4th night for 75% off). Can someone please let me know if I'm totally missing something here? The tour operator prices seem really off the wall even if you figure they are giving me rack rates.

Thanks
Some lodges/camps refuse to pay commission to travel agents / tour operators on all/some rates (especially certain promotional rates such the 4th night free rate you mention), so a 10%-15% mark-up vs. the lowest promotional rate offered on the internet wouldn't be entirely uncommon.

If the tour operator did an extensive consultation with you, did a good amount of research etc., a 20% mark-up may still be considered reasonable, but anything much more than that sounds like a tour operator trying to take advantage of you.
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Old Jan 8, 19, 10:54 am
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Thanks for the feedback. They did no research, I gave them the dates and specific lodge.
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Old Jan 8, 19, 1:54 pm
  #67  
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Originally Posted by drewdawg199 View Post
Thanks for the feedback. They did no research, I gave them the dates and specific lodge.
Why don't you ask them... ? since you took the time to get two quotes at least share your feedback with the vendors.
Maybe there is something missing in the math
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Old Jan 8, 19, 3:38 pm
  #68  
 
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Sometimes it is better to just go direct. We were looking at Tanzania for September this year (but going with family to Italy again instead). Some well known and recommended operators couldn't get close to rates that I got from going direct.
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Old Jan 9, 19, 3:46 am
  #69  
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Originally Posted by drewdawg199 View Post
Hi - sorry to dig up this thread but it seemed relevant to my question.

I have recently received a quote from two different tour operators for 4 nights at the Jamala Madikwe, including Fedair flights from JNB. One price was about $9,900 and the other was slightly over $14,000. The same dates can be booked directly with the lodge and they can book my Fedair flights for me, which comes to about $6,400 (there is a 4th night free promo that gives 4th night for 75% off). Can someone please let me know if I'm totally missing something here? The tour operator prices seem really off the wall even if you figure they are giving me rack rates.

Thanks
Just a few additional thoughts on Madikwe. Also look into Morukuru (private house, private staff, Relais and Chateaux). Trip report:
Trip Report: Morukuru (Madikwe Game Reserve) with Our Son

Also, Madikwe just lost one of their experienced rangers/hotel managers to a bull elephant attack. Very sad story also worth researching....not that it should influence your itinerary...just a reminder that safaris are not zoos.
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