Planning your trip to Africa needn’t be as hard or complicated as you think it might be. With our 10 Steps from time and temperature to vaccines and visas, we will guide you through the process of successfully booking your trip to Africa whether you are soaking up the sun in Egypt or going on Safari in Kenya.
Hi there and welcome to another episode of MyTravelMoneyTV. Today I am going to share with you, our 10 Steps to planning and organising a trip to Africa. A recent questionnaire has found that a substantial number of people would love to travel to Africa but consider it too much of an ordeal, often putting them off. This isn’t actually the case, planning your trip to Africa is much the same as travelling elsewhere but with a few add-ons here and there. No matter what your reason for travelling, whether it be for a culture trip to Marrakech or to soak up the sun in Sharm-el-Sheikh, you will be able to use these 10 steps to guarantee an organised and well planned holiday.
Step 1. Destination
You can spend as long as you like thinking about this, it’s when you decide where to go that you finally start planning. Its good to mention now that this is the part people usually get stuck on, which is fair enough bearing in mind there are over 50 countries to choose from. Consider buying a guide to travelling round Africa to help you pinpoint some areas of interest. It may seem old-fashioned but travel agents are there to advise you on travel destinations based on the kind of trip you want to go on.
Step 2. Time
Once you have thought about where you’d like to go, it’s time to decide when. Now this is probably easier than planning say a trip to France as there are certain times of year you should avoid travelling to certain areas. For example, if you want to travel to the desert, Namibia is best in June and July whereas the Sahara is unbearable at this time. It is a safe bet to go around September/October when it is still fairly warm and you avoid rain season, which comes around March/April, which can make Safaris and sunbathing quite miserable.
Step 3. Book your tour
Booking a tour operator is not essential but highly advisable as you need to remember Africa is VERY different to what you are used to, so sometimes it’s best to leave it to the tour guides! Ranging from budget to luxury, there are a number of companies out there that can tailor tours and trips to your needs. We recommend definitely booking a tour guide if you are planning on undertaking a safari, travelling to more than one country, have specific visits in mind or are concerned about health and safety, not to mention a number of other advantages. So as you can see it definitely is advice worth considering.
Step 4. Book your flights
Flights to Africa aren’t particularly cheap and of course like most flights, you will be better off booking your flights as soon as you know the time you plan on going, usually at least two months in advance if you can as airlines book up very quickly. Also consider stopping off on your flight as opposed to flying directly as this can decrease prices significantly.
Step 5. Insurance
Do not, take the risk of travelling without travel insurance, especially not to Africa! There are a number of cheaper insurance companies that do not charge too much for single trips. You can expect to pay around 5-7% of the value of your trip but this will usually cover any cancellations and medical problems. Unfortunately you never know what can happen in life so it’s best to be safe than sorry. Again a number of tour operators book some cover in to their trips so it really is a good idea to book through them.
Step 6. Vaccinations
Again, please don’t leave this until the last minute. There are some nasty ailments you can contract in Africa, Malaria and Yellow Fever being amongst the most common. Some countries might not allow you in if you don’t have proof that you are clear of a particular disease. A trip to your doctor can usually take care of all the necessary vaccines you need and usually some pills to take to counteract catching Malaria. Because some vaccines need to be administered over a course, you need to make sure you take care of this at least 3 months before your travel date.
Step 7. Get your Visa
Firstly, make sure that your passport is at least 6 months in date to avoid any complications when you travel. Secondly, you will most likely need a tourist Visa if you are travelling to for example Egypt or Kenya. The best way to find out is by calling the Embassy as Visa Requirements change quite frequently. For shorter periods of time, Visas can also be obtained on arrival at your destination but it will save you a lot of time at Customs if you have dealt with this in advance.
Step 8. Travel essentials
There are some things you just can’t forget when you go to Africa. The obvious such as a camera, spare memory card, sunglasses etc are too often forgotten. However some essentials that should definitely not be forgotten are insect repellent, a first aid kit, as there are a number of bugs you can contract from the unsanitary conditions in most areas, iodine tablets are also a good idea. Another plus would be to bring a copy of your driver’s license, travel insurance and copy of your passport, as well as your actual passport of course.
Step 9. Travel Money
Keeping with staying organised, don’t leave your travel money until the last minute. Your trip to Africa will already have cost you a substantial amount so the last thing you’ll want is dreadful rates at the airport. There are some great currency comparison websites, which will find you the cheapest deals and even deliver the money straight to your door the following day so you don’t even need to leave the house.
Step 10. Read Book and guides
So you’re pretty much there, now probably with only a few weeks to go before your trip, you might want to invest in some travel guides and books to learn some local phrases, culture and also make some notes of things you want to see and do once you are there. Aside from that, you can kick back and relax and know that you have successfully organised a trip that you had originally deemed complicated but as you can probably tell, planning a trip to Africa really is not as complex as you had made it out to be.
I hope that you have enjoyed this video and I wish you the best of luck and fun on your trip! If you have any questions or comments be sure to follow us on Twitter with the @MyTravelMoneyUK handle!
Written by Sofia Kluge on Google+