by Team Safari Safety

Security Guidelines

African safaris - general security guidelines

An African safari  vacation could be one of the most exciting and rewarding holidays you could ever experience.

Visit this great continent and discover the true spirit of Africa. You could even do this on our customised, tailor made African safaris and tours. On such a trip, you will get up-close encounters with Africa’s iconic wildlife to authentic cultural experiences.

The sheer abundance of animals will take your breath away. And the ease of viewing the variety of species would simply amaze you.

Apart from guiding you on the famous wild life veiwing locations such as the Masai Mara in Kenya, the Serengeti in Tanzania, Kruger National Park in South Africa, and the Okavango in Botswana, we also share with you intimate knowledge of some of the lesser known locations where incredible wildlife viewing can be experienced.

At the same time the African continent has even more to offer: dramatic landscapes, colourful tribes, interesting cultures, and a wide range of outdoor adventures. From Morocco to Madagascar, Cairo to Cape Town, we offer a range of fabulous African safaris, tours and beach holidays.

Your Security on Safari

However, just like any other  travel destination in any part of the world, it’s essential to be aware of potential dangers that travelers may encounter. Understanding these risks and taking appropriate precautions can help ensure a safe and enjoyable journey.

In this article, we shall be  discussing some of the potential dangers that travelers may face in Africa and provide valuable tips to mitigate them, so that your travels to Africa are safer.

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Be Sensitive to the Locals’ Customs and traditions

Respecting local customs, traditions, and religious practices is essential when traveling in Africa.  Not doing this might not necessarily present any dangers, but it helps a great deal for harmony and respect.  It is for this reason that we advocate that you get into the habit of familizaring yourself with the cultural norms of the region or destinations you are visiting.  and dress modestly when required. Be mindful of photography restrictions, particularly in sacred or sensitive areas. Engage with locals respectfully and seek permission before taking photographs of individuals.

If on Safari, Safety From Dangerous Wild Animals

Africa is renowned for its incredible wildlife, but it’s important to exercise caution when encountering wild animals. Always observe wildlife from a safe distance and never approach or provoke them. Follow the guidance of professional guides during wildlife safaris and adhere to park regulations. Avoid any activities that involve direct contact with wild animals, as they can be dangerous and potentially transmit diseases.

Pay Attention to the Geopolitics Before Travel

Before you travel to Africa try to get to know about the current political situation of the place you want to visit.  Certain regions or countries in Africa may experience political or civil unrest, protests, or demonstrations.  Some of the upheavals have been on-going for years, even decades. Others may just be seasonal – for example during the elections. Some may be spontaneous due to local  disagreements.  Whatever the case may be, it is advisable to stay informed about the current political situation of the country or region you plan to visit. You should be able to do this  through reliable news sources or government travel advisories.

And, if you get caught up in a situation while already on your trip, it is important to avoid areas where protests or unrest are taking place and follow the guidance of local authorities or your embassy in case of emergencies.

Staying Safe From Fraudsters and Scammers

This advisory note does not in any way suggest that Africa is full of scammers and fraudsters. But like any society, there is always going to be a small number of  individuals with ill intentions. Travelers  to Africa may encounter scams and fraud, especially if they are visiting some of the more popular tourist destinations. One is therefore advise to be cautious of strangers offering unsolicited help or guidance, as they may have ulterior motives. Common scams include fake tour operators, counterfeit goods, or overly friendly locals aiming to exploit tourists.

The moral of this story? Always research and book tours and activities through reputable agencies, and always be skeptical of deals that seem too good to be true.

Security of Personal Items

While Africa is generally a safe continent to visit, like any destination, there are areas with higher crime rates. Petty theft, pickpocketing, and bag snatching can occur in crowded places, markets, or public transportation. To minimize the risk, keep your belongings secure, avoid displaying valuable items, and be vigilant in crowded areas. Use reputable transportation services and be cautious when exploring unfamiliar areas, especially at night.

As a general rule, it’s advisable to avoid walking alone at night, especially in unfamiliar or poorly lit areas. Stick to well-lit streets and busy areas, and if possible, travel with a companion or in groups. Consider using reputable taxi services for nighttime transportation, and always inform someone about your whereabouts.

Stay Connected and in Communication

Maintaining communication with family, friends, or your embassy is crucial for your security. Ensure that you have a working mobile phone with a local SIM card or an international roaming plan. Save emergency contact numbers, including local authorities and your embassy, in your phone and keep a hard copy as well.

Stay updated on the latest news and developments in the country or region you are visiting. Monitor local news sources and sign up for travel alerts or notifications from your embassy or travel advisory websites. If there are any civil unrest, protests, or security concerns, it’s best to avoid those areas and follow the advice of local authorities.

Take Away

One of the most important security tips is to trust your instincts. If a situation or a person feels unsafe or uncomfortable, remove yourself from it immediately. Whether it’s declining an invitation, avoiding certain neighborhoods, or changing your plans, prioritize your safety and well-being above everything else.

Traveling within Africa for a holiday vacation can be a thrilling and enriching experience. By following these general security guidelines, you can mitigate potential risks and ensure a safe and enjoyable trip. Remember to research your destination, secure your belongings, stay connected, respect local customs, and stay informed about current events. By prioritizing your safety and being mindful of your surroundings, you’ll be well-prepared to embrace all the wonders Africa has to offer. Happy travels!