23 answers

I am looking for a reliable, cheap safari operator out of Arusha. Any suggestions?

Asked by via Site_iconTravellr.com

23 Answers

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    I have successfully traveled with Predator Safaris many times. Google them to see all the info and feedback. over 6 years ago

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    I went last year with www.african-road-safari.com.
    I warmly recommend them. Really tailored service for me and my family. over 6 years ago

    Answered by via Site_iconTravellr.com
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    I have used a private guide who works for Skies of Serengeti...can definitely recommend him. He lives in Arusha and was very knowledgeable. over 6 years ago

    Answered by Sam Richards via Site_iconTravellr.com
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    We were referred to Maasai by some friends who had travelled to Sernegeti recently. We just had our dream Safari in Tanzania and Kenya with the perfect end on the beach in Zanzibar! We used www.maasai.co.ke
    See if you can get Martin as your driver in Tanzania and David in Kenya! They went out of our way to make our Safari!
    Cant wait to go back! almost 6 years ago

    Answered by via Site_iconTravellr.com
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    I'd recommend local operator Freddie and Robin at Real Life Adventure Travel... they do safaris, adventure and cultural trips depending on your interest. I've always found them to be highly knowledgable and professional. over 4 years ago

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    Local Speciality mountain climbing Outfitter in Tanzania, with testimony and better references from past kilimanjaro climbers.


    Great Discount prices on climbing kilimanjaro trips over 4 years ago

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    I did a safari in Tanzania with a company called It Started in Africa ( http://www.itstartedinafrica.com ) and it was absolutely amazing. I think that what you value the most in a safari is the service you get, the smiles you receive, the knowledge of your guide, the food of your cooker, etc. And everything was just plain perfect. I've noticed that recently their facebook page ( http://www.facebook.com/itstartedinafrica ) has been receiving lots of awesome reviews and everytime I read one I get all nostalgic and wanting to come back to the most beautiful country in the world.
    Cheers over 4 years ago

    Answered by Joana Coutinho via Site_iconTravellr.com
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    There is a wonderful, young, solo safari arranger who runs his own business - Mourice Maqway in Arusha (cell +255 758261856, email trustmourice@yahoo.com). Mourice is absolutely someone you can trust to arrange trips that meet your individual needs - extremely reliable, excellent English, and just a sweetheart to travel with. Very important, he is a safe driver and very handy as a mechanic in case anything breaks down (very useful in Africa in general). If you are in Tanzania for work, volunteering, or studies - he is great for short one or two day trips as well as longer adventures. He is well connected with others so can arrange help with in-country airlines (like Precision Air) or other travel groups. Our university has sent many faculty members to Tanzania and Mourice has helped many of us arrange both airport pick-ups and safaris in the Northern region. So if you'd rather support a local individual at a reasonable rate rather than a commercial group - this is someone many of us can recommend highly. over 4 years ago

    Answered by L.Chen, Univ. of California SanFrancisco via Site_iconTravellr.com
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    I can recommend safari operator i used, they are reliable and will go second time with them Shadows of Africa is based in Arusha, they are flexible and will help you to create safari according to your budget
    The vehicles are good, driver was on time every morning, he was also very good with spotting the animals on long distance. you can check my pics from safari to Tanzania here http://www.travellingcorner.com/2012/04/safari-in-tanzania/
    Unforgettable for sure. almost 4 years ago

    Answered by Nina via Site_iconTravellr.com
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    Have a look at Base Camp Tanzania. I haven't travelled with them yet, but may be next year. I know the owners and they are fantastic people.

    www.ganeandmarshall.com/country/Tanzania.html almost 4 years ago

    Answered by via Site_iconTravellr.com
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    The best guide ever is Godlisten Moshi. He's experienced, knowledgeable and an all around super nice guy.
    It's not just me who thinks he's a wonderful guide. Check out all the wonderful comments people say about him on tripadvisor.com. Plus he's Tanzanian so you can feel good knowing your $$ is supporting the local community there. over 3 years ago

    Answered by Lynne via Site_iconWorldNomads.com
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    I would stay away from tour operator "It started in Africa". We used them for a 7 day safari in all 4 Tanzania's beautiful natural parks and came back very disappointed.

    Actually, the issues we faced were so serious that we had to escalate, not only to the tour operator themselves, but also to the Tanzanian Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism and the Tanzanian Tourism Board, so you understand that this is a case we take very seriously.

    Let me also highlight that we are not new to travelling (having traveled in more than 40 countries worldwide) or adventure travelling (having traveled in less than easy circumstances in Asia and Africa before). Let me also stress that we loved Tanzania, the nature, people, animals, culture, everything, and this makes the services we received even more painful. For us it is important to escalate this issue, to ensure that Tanzania’s visitors do not receive this kind of treatment again, when travelling to this incredible country!

    I am sharing a summary of our dealings with the tour operator “It started in Africa” below:

    • Our dedicated safari guide was disappointing, unprofessional, insuffient and unfriendly. His behavior showed no concern or interest for our well-being or enjoyment, he was very often uncooperative, aggressive and sometime menacing and abusive. He repeatedly lied to us, did not agree to any of our requests or desires and was trying to reduce the time on safari, by starting later than we wanted and refusing to go on more distant parts of the parks

    • When we complaint, the driver’s behavior became aggressive and abusive and in the last 3 days, he stopped offering safari or guide services at all, with his role reduced to only driving. He did not speak to us, show us animals or answer any of our questions. He was speeding in the parts of the parks where it’s more likely to see animals, scaring any animals off and as a result we received no real safari services in these 3 days

    • We are hugely disappointed by our interaction with “It started in Africa”. Even when escalating issues to the company’s director by phone, during the trip, we saw no improvement about 3 years ago

    Answered by Ioanna via Site_iconTravellr.com
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    Absolutely agree. Stay away from It Started in Africa. THey promise amazing everything, but office is a house away from center, with no computer. The car was old and with ignition problem. Cook smelled with sweat. Tour guide did not talk except for see and look... And completely rubbish dinner. Chewy beef!

    Binoculars were forgotten. We have been given some cheap ones. Go with Zara or Jockey. THey are good and reliable. This is a scam company, which does way too much promising, but does not deliver.

    PS. My tripadvisor comment was deleted from their trip advisor page. over 2 years ago

    Answered by Zhanar via Site_iconTravellr.com
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    It Started in Africa is an unprofessional company. Delivering low quality service. They have a nice website and so called Customer Happiness Manager writes nice emails. But the reality was different. Guide was commenting from time to time. Cook was cooking untasty food and plus he was always late to serve. The car was old and did not start up at the first attempt. Actually we liked the safari because Tanzania has beautiful parks and we were lucky to see lots of animals, but we were absolutely unhappy with the service of that company. I am convinced we could get much better level of serivce for the price we were charged. Complete dissapointment. Do not trust their website or email offers. Avoid It started in Africa by all means! over 2 years ago

    Answered by Izolda via Site_iconTravellr.com
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    i can recommend (www.samburutrails.com) they are highly recommended. over 2 years ago

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    If you come across http://www.safaritrackersadventure.com/ for sure you won't regreat you choice to go with them on Tanzania Safari and all your vacation. over 2 years ago

    Answered by via Site_iconTravellr.com
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    I would highly recommend Tropical Trails. They have a very professional office staff and goes beyond the call of duty to arrange details and the drivers and knowledgeable, friendly and can tell you just about everything including the latin names of every mammal, reptile and bird. We have gone with them twice-- once as a group of four and then this last time, in June 2014, with a group of 20. They also spent a week driving us around Mwanza…met us at the airport and took amazing care of us for two weeks. over 2 years ago

    Answered by Debbie Zepick via Site_iconTravellr.com
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    Hoopoe Safari is great! We had three drivers for our large group - Joseph, Clemence, and Moru. Absolutely fantastic. over 2 years ago

    Answered by Carsten McCarter via Site_iconWorldNomads.com
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    I would highly recommend Youth adventures and safaries...i had best time in my life with them (guide Godfrey) http://www.youth-adventures.com.
    Ivana about 1 year ago

    Answered by via Site_iconWorldNomads.com
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    I would stay away from Tan Pride Safaris. We were there in Jan/Feb and we had to escalate it to the government when our itinerary was totally changed without our approval and we were being forced to pay for the aspects that had already been paid for with the original itinerary. about 1 year ago

    Answered by via Site_iconWorldNomads.com
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    Avoid "It Started in Africa", badly maintained vehicle and broken promises!

    Tanzania gets full stars for wildlife variation and accommodation hospitality, it stated in Africa (which we booked based on the reviews here) on the other hand gets few stars for their lack of quality control, you'll either get an old or if your unlucky a very old car and probably the worst car in the fleet as we did.

    When it comes to planning a Safari trip the company and car you get plays a huge role, its where you’ll inevitably spend most of your time 8+ hours a day game viewing and chasing the animals and where the quality and reliability makes a huge difference to your trip.

    This is where it all went wrong for us, imagine being picked up from the airport in a car that's seats are full of stains and the interior is in very bad shape, this can be somewhat overlooked after all it should be an adventure right? Now that same car then starts exuding mechanical and other issues both initial days of the trip (on multiple consecutive days the car has been taken for various repairs that should have been done long before our tour started) wasting a lot of valuable sightseeing time on a trip we spent a lot of money on and travelled a long distance to take part in.

    We had to detour for repairs. Driver had to back track from the entrance of Ngorongoro crater to go have the car checked! wasted 2+ hrs parked at a garage. Absolutely no pride in one’s car or corporate quality control. We told the company about this and they gave us empty promises, the car continued to have issues through almost every day of our trip, see pics these are all from separate repair stops we had to make.

    Compared to most tour Operators the car we got from it started in Africa was the worst, they then ignored us with empty promises and we felt somewhat embarrassed pulling-up next to other cars in our run down vehicle or being on the side of the road as better and well equipped vehicles passed us by. Their customer service on multiple occasions pretended to promise a resolution, but would then quickly forget about us tell the tour was over! 3 months ago

    Answered by Aft via Site_iconTravellr.com
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    Disappointing ! Even more after It Started in Africa offered to pay me to remove my reviews.
    My husband and I selected It Started in Africa as our tour organizer for a 6 day Mount Kilimanjaro hike mainly because of their outstanding reviews and classification on Safaribookings and TripAdvisor. We also chose them because they were very reactive and had a nice website. But our main selection criteria was their ranking on Safaribookings (number 1) and on Trip Advisor (number 10).

    The hike itself was satisfying: the guides, cooks and porters were friendly and helpful, BUT our overall experience turned out not to be as good as expected, and there were a lot of “small” details that added together gave us the overall unpleasant feeling that we had somehow been “cheated” by It Started in Africa.

    But here comes the worst part!
    When we returned home, I posted a review on Trip Advisor and rated It Started in Africa as "average", considering the problems that we had and the un-kept promises. The next day, Joao, the Happiness Manager, sent me an email with explanations about what happened and offered to pay me 700 USD if I removed my post or upgraded it to Very Good. When I refused, he offered me 1000 USD. After he had my review forcibly removed from Trip Advisor, I posted another review explaining how he tried to bribe me, and I received a 3rd email offering me 2500 USD if I removed my second review. I also noticed that the other average reviews which had been posted on Trip Advisor at around the same time as mine had disappeared. I managed to contact another reviewer who confirmed that he was offered money to remove or upgrade his review.

    I then realized why It Started in Africa only had very good and excellent reviews on the internet. It seems that they bribe unhappy customers to remove or change their reviews if they are not 4 or 5 stars. And I cannot help but wonder....how many people were paid in the past? And how many people, like me, selected It Started In Africa mainly because of their track record of excellent and very good reviews and were hugely disappointed? 3 months ago

    Answered by Cath via Site_iconTravellr.com

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