Our business headquarters are in Usa River, Tanzania (just outside Arusha). Lema Peter is in Tanzania most of the time, in charge of our Tanzania ground operations. Erika Bloom is usually in the United States (Massachusetts) where she is often your contact person for booking your trip.
See our Contact Us page.
Trip insurance is strongly advised. All payments made to us are non-refundable and non-transferable. We advise buying travel insurance and find www.insuremytrip.com is a great place to compare plans from various companies. Be sure to read the fine print and understand exactly what is or isn't covered. For example, for Kilimanjaro treks, make sure the plan does not exclude high altitude travel. Mountaineering is often excluded from coverage, but check with the insurer - often they don't consider trekking (hiking at high altitude, without ropes) to be "mountaineering" but you want to be sure. Some insurers will provide an additional benefit or coverage if you purchase within a certain number of days of booking your trip. You should have at minimum, an insurance that covers you for medical/evacuation costs. You should consider the more expensive option, trip interuption/cancellation insurance (certain criteria apply to coverage). There are even "cancel for any reason" policies although those get increasingly expensive.
For climbs, we require a non-refundable, non-transferable $500 US Dollar deposit per person on booking so we can confirm your lodging and other arrangements. Payments are by bank/wire transfer (we provide you the information necessary for your bank to transfer funds from your account to our account). The final payment (also non-refundable) is usually due 30 days prior to arrival, also by bank transfer unless you prefer to bring it on arrival in cash, USD. For safaris, sometimes $500 USD is enough but sometimes we need a larger deposit depending on which lodges/camps you use (up to 50% deposit). We may also need an earlier final payment - we can let you know when you finalize your lodging choices. All payments made to us are non-refundable and nontransferable.
Yes, most travelers need a travel visa to enter Tanzania (with the exception of citizens of a few countries, mostly in Africa, who do not need a visa). For those who need a travel visa, citizens of most (but not all) countries can obtain it on arrival at Kilimanjaro International Airport or at the ground border if coming by bus from Nairobi. However, travelers from certain countries require a "referred visa" meaning it MUST be obtained in advance. Depending on where you live, you may choose to obtain it in person or by mail through the nearest Tanzania Embassay or representative. Although the Tanzanian government "highly recommends" you get your travel visa in advance, many tourists get it on arrival at the airport and it generally goes smoothly (certain countries of residence you MUST obtain a visa in advance, but this does not affect travelers from the USA, Canada, and western Europe). Be sure your passport is valid for at least 6 months after your return date, and has multiple empty pages (not almost full or almost expired). If you prefer to obtain your travel visa in advance, it can be obtained from the Tanzania Embassy or Consular Office in some countries. In the USA, for example, it can be obtained in person in New York (the UN office) or Washington DC (the Embassy) or by mailing your passport, fee, passport photos, and supporting documentation to either location. Serengeti Pride can provide supporting documentation to include with your visa application, and a helpful instruction sheet. The fee for the travel visa ranges from $50-$100 USD per person depending on your country of origin.
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There are no required vaccines for travel to Tanzania when flying directly from the United States. Yellow fever vaccine may be required for entry into Tanzania if traveling recently from other countries where yellow fever is present, and may be recommended by your health care provider regardless. There are several vaccines your travel clinic may suggest (for example, Hepatitis A & B, Meningitis, Typhoid, Polio, Yellow Fever, etc). Malaria preventive medication is strongly suggested - you should be prepared because malaria is endemic in Tanzania. Although you won't have mosquitoes high up on Kilimanjaro, you may be exposed to mosquitoes at the lodge before and after your climb, and in some safari areas though not in the high elevations around Ngorongoro. For climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, certain medications to help prevent altitude illness, or treat altitude related symptoms, are advised. Everyone coming to Tanzania should bring an antibiotic to take in case of traveler's diarrhea, which is a common but usually easily treated problem. This is all explained in a helpful document we send you far in advance of your trip.
Kilimanjaro International Airport (airport code JRO). This airport is located between Arusha and Moshi, Tanzania. Please note that Arusha airport is actually a small airport in Arusha town, used mostly for domestic and safari flights; about an hour driving time from Kilimanjaro airport. We can also pick up at Arusha airport as well as at hotels and bus stops in Arusha. Other airports such as Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania and Nairobi, Kenya are distant enough to require an extra flight, an extra travel day in one or both directions (and sometimes an overnight stay), as well as extra expense to get to Arusha area. Please note that if you are finishing your trip on Zanzibar or in southern Tanzania, it may be best to arrive at Kilimanjaro airport but depart from Zanzibar or Dar Es Salaam aiports.
Tanzania is thankfully a fairly stable and peaceful country. Visitors generally feel very safe here, and find most Tanzanians warmly welcoming of travelers. Of course one should be careful in certain areas especially at night, just like many other areas of the world. Although incidents are rare, it is not considered safe for tourists to walk around on their own in some areas - having a local guide is much better. It is always wise to check your home country's traveler information for Tanzania and subscribe to any updates that are available. For example, the US Department of State has a page for traveler information for various destination countries. Some of the hazards of travel in Tanzania include the poor road system and erratic driving habits of the locals, and the susceptibility of visitors to stomach bugs just like in other less developed countries.
Absolutely! Just let us know whether you prefer to be put in touch by email or by phone. We'll match you with past clients who can vouch for us and for our fantastic crew.
Tips are an important part of their income for the hardworking Tanzanians who make up our crews. We provide tipping suggestions to our clients, although of course tipping is always at your discretion.
Yes. Besides private trips, we offer group departure dates for climbs and safaris. Because pricing is based on twin/double occupancy, we'll match you up with someone of the same gender. If you prefer a single hotel room and/or single tent, we can advise you of the cost for a single supplement. If one of the dates listed on our website doesn't work for you, please contact us anyway - we are constantly adding new departures.
Plan to stay longer and volunteer (we can help you arrange this). Participate in our partnership with Pack for a Purpose - commit to bring at least 5 pounds of school supplies or other items to donate. We are happy to arrange a school visit if your schedule allows. Bring items to donate to a children's home/orphanage. After you return, become a supporter of a non-profit organization doing good work in Tanzania. There are many ways to give back, and our clients are often moved to do so. A frequent comment is that people wish they had scheduled a longer trip so they could stay and volunteer. Please see our Trip Extensions/Giving Back and Volunteering page.