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Mistakes to Avoid When booking an African Safari

Avoid These Mistakes When Planning a Safari

Want to learn how to avoid costly mistakes when you buy online safaris in Africa? You’ve come to the right place!

Find peace of mind & answers to your questions how to avoid costly mistakes when buying safaris online or from travel agents. Expert advice – learn what to ask about African safaris.

Our purpose is to help you find the best safari for you.

We’ve lived in South Africa since 1993, and travel extensively through Africa in addition to going on safari. Here we tell you the questions we would ask in considering an African safari or vacation.


As you may know from researching for your safari trip, most online safari tours websites and websites on African safari vacations generally only tell you about the safari lodges or camps they own. These online safari tours & lodges may or may not be the best for you.

Similarly limited is the information available from most travel agents who sell trips to Africa. Very few have ever been to Africa. Even fewer have been on more than 1 or 2 safaris.

Our Questions To Ask About Online Safari Tours

  • 1. Do they have the big five?

Most people to go on safari so that they can see lion, elephant, rhino, buffalo and leopard. These are called the big five since they were the most dangerous animals for hunters to hunt.

There are many other intriguing animals and plant life to discover but you need to make sure you know if the park or private reserve has animals you want to see. Click here for our free guides to what major animals are found in what major parks in Southern and East Africa.

  • 2. Is the safari in a private reserve that is fenced in or is in part of a national park, where animals can roam freely?

Many excellent safaris can be had in a private reserve – privately owned land that may also own the animals that you see. The private reserves can be:• entirely fenced in

  • can be adjacent to other private reserves where animals move freely between reserves
  • adjacent to national parks where the animals can move freely between the national park and the private reserve

This is a key question. Why? Because with the boom in the number of game lodges in South Africa, you may go to a game poor reserve (ie very few animals). Either they don’t have a lot of certain types of animals – lion for example, or they are in an area that can’t support a large number of animals.

Even though many private reserves are very large, some people want more of a wilderness experience where animals are roaming freely over a more vast area.

  • 3. Are the game drive vehicles permitted to go off road to follow animals?

Even in private reserves the animals are wild. And sometimes just as you get close enough to see them they decide to run off. If you really want to get as close to the animals as possible, you may want to consider going to a lodge on a private reserve. Since these reserves permit their rangers to drive off road if necessary to get you really close to the animals.

Many national parks forbid off road game drives. The reasons are to protect delicate flora and to give the animals a break as well. Private lodges that are within some national parks compensate for this by enabling you to walk off road. This is a stunning opportunity. It is a markedly different experience compared to riding in a game vehicle and you should do it.

Want more advice? Or want help?

Click here to learn more about avoiding costly mistakes when choosing and buying online safari tours in South Africa

Take a look at these tips if you are considering an East Africa safari or East Africa safari tour operators (Kenya or Tanzania) Want us to help you avoid these costly mistakes? Contact us now for free ideas for a customized African safari vacation for your interests and budget.


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