Electricity is 220 – 240 volts AC at 50 cycles per second in most hotels and lodges. In camp we use solar electricity for lighting in the tents. We provide a charging station in the mess and or vehicles are fitted with inverters to charge cameras and computers. We can provide a generator on request. A good flashlight is always useful.
Food and drink:
On safari, we recommend that you drink bottled water, which is provided free of charge in camp. In some hotels and lodges safe drinking water is also provided in flasks.
All our ice is made from purified water and salads and vegetables are carefully washed. If you are unsure you can always ask your guide.
The Camp Bar is normally stocked with locally available alcoholic beverages. If you have any special requests please let us know in advance.
There is no need to immediately change money upon arrival. Exchange your foreign currency once you are settled at the hotel, through a bank, or other authorized dealer. Credit cards such as American Express, Diners, and Visa are widely accepted in Nairobi, although not in the countryside, and sometimes a fee is added for the service. Traveler’s checks while often accepted tend to attract commissions of up to 5%. Personal cheques are more readily accepted although they will attract a handling charge of US $ 50 per cheque. Reserve an adequate amount of cash-dollars for trading – small bills work best in rural areas.
Kenya has a departure tax of approximately US$30. This is normally included in your international ticket, issued abroad. However if you depart from Wilson Airport by private charter, this will need to be paid in cash.
Your guide will be carrying field guides on the birds, animals, parks, and trees. There are good bookshops in Nairobi. Suggested reading on Africa:
1.Out of Africa Karen Blixen
2. The Lunatic Express Charles Miller
3. Something of Value Robert Ruark
4. No Man’s Land John Heminway
5. Uhuru Robert Ruark
6. West with the Night Beryl Markham
7. Born Free Joy Adamson
8. The Marsh Lions Jonathan Scott
9. Safari Bartle Bull
10. The Leopard’s Tale Jonathan Scott
11. The Frozen Leopard Aaron Latham
12. Portraits in the Wild Cynthia Moss
13 Flame Trees of Thika Elspeth Huxley
14. Elephants Have Right of Way Betty Leslie-Melville
15. The White Nile Alan Moorehead
16. One Life Richard Leakey
There are also many good documentary videos, including those made by filmmaker Alan Root through Anglia TV and David Attenborough of BBC TV. A few recommended titles are Castles of Clay, Safari by Balloon, Two in the Bush and Echo of the Elephants.
Time, phoning, emailing and faxing
Kenya is three hours ahead of Greenwich meantime and 10 hours ahead of US West Coast time during Daylight Savings Time and, 11 hours ahead during winter — i.e. we are getting up about the time you go to sleep.
It is easy to phone or email us if you have concerns or questions. The best time to phone is probably during the evening here, 7 – 10 p.m.
Contacts and communication while on safari Communications with our Nairobi office take place at least once a day so any important messages, or short emails can be relayed. In addition to this I have a satellite phone for emergency use. Many clients prefer not to hear what is happening in the outside world while on safari, but we do have the ability to tune in to global events if the need arises.
Tips and tipping
Tipping is entirely a your discretion and but tips are always welcomed. If you feel that you have received good service and would like to show your appreciation with more than a simple thank you, the following suggestions may help you. If you decide to tip the camp crew, the best time to do is on the last day of the safari. Traditionally the camp headman receives this in a simple ceremony in front of everyone. This could be in the form of a personal dollar check, which saves you from carrying cash. Remember that if you use a check the amount received will be less US$50 bank clearance charges. The headman will later divide the gratuity equally among the crew members as often there are crewmen working in the background whom you may not see but who are vital to the successful running of the camp.
Being a personal service outfit, we are happy to accommodate your specific drink and diet requests, organize a special birthday or anniversary celebration during your safari, or send important messages back to our office or home. We want your safari to be everything you anticipated, and a bit more. Do not hesitate to let us know what you will need while you are here.