Frequently Asked Questions
Please click here
to go to our general FAQ
, which has essential information that applies to all of our programs.
Resources to Learn & Teach about Southern Africa
Visit our recommended reading page
to see the list of books GEEO recommends reading before your program (this is not required reading). We also have lesson plans
and Pinterest boards
that may be useful for you as you learn about your destination and prepare to bring lessons back to your classroom.
Terms and Conditions
It is very important for you to visit our Terms and Conditions
page before signing up for this program.
All cancellations must be submitted to GEEO in written form by emailing your request for cancellation to email@example.com
. If you do not receive a confirmation that we have received your written cancellation request, please call us at 1-877-600-0105. Verbal cancellation requests will not be honored.
- If you cancel 60 days or more prior to departure, all your program fee payments will be refunded besides your $350 deposit, which is kept on file for future use
- If you cancel between 30 and 59 days prior to departure, you will receive a 50% refund and your deposit is kept on file for future use
- If you cancel within 30 days of departure, you will receive no refund, but your deposit is kept on file for future use
- TRANSPORTATION: This is not a physically demanding journey; however, traveling can be difficult, with long drives and poor road conditions at times. Despite this, most clients feel that the diversity of the African landscape, countries, culture and wildlife are all well worth the experience. We use a comfortable and safe air-conditioned touring vehicle for the long drives
- YELLOW FEVER: It may be required to show a Yellow Fever certificate if you are traveling to South Africa from a Yellow Fever endemic country.
- WATER IN CAPE TOWN: Cape Town is currently experiencing one of the worst droughts it has seen in over 100 years, and while we want you to have the best time possible while there, please try to reduce your water usage.
- MONEY EXCHANGE: We strongly advise that you bring ZAR or USD from your home country or exchange money before the start of the tour, to avoid delays on tour. Please see the Money Exchange section for more details.
- DRONES: The use of drones in national parks in Southern Africa is prohibited.
Group Leader Description
In Cape Town, you will have a local G Adventures tour leader. When you arrive in Johannesburg you will be greeted by the G Adventures tour leader that will remain with your group throughout the remainder of the program. G Adventures refers to their tour leaders as Chief Experience Officers (CEO).
All of our leaders in southern Africa are registered and licensed tourism guides, meaning they’ve studied to have a broad knowledge base of the region’s history, cultures, and wildlife, and are legally certified to lead/guide tours in the regions visited. Most of our leaders in the region are from South Africa, though it may be possible that you’ll have a leader from another country in the southern African region.
As the group managers and leaders, the aim of the group leaders is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. They will provide information on the places where we are traveling, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. He/she will take care of the small things so you can concentrate on enjoying your adventure. In addition, as an integral part of the team, your drivers are skilled and experienced drivers who has intimate knowledge of the vehicle and routes traveled.
We also use local guides where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting.
Trip includes moderate hiking and other activities that require an average/moderate level of fitness to enjoy. You can skip the longer hikes if you wish.
Eating is a big part of traveling. Traveling with G Adventures you experience the vast array of wonderful food that is available in South Africa. On this tour, we provide only a few meals for you and your group members, so as to give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat. It also gives you more budgeting flexibility in your choices. Our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other's company. There is no obligation to do this though - while in the larger centers, your tour leaders will be able to suggest favorite restaurants during your trip.
For the included meals, vegetarian meal requests and other dietary requirements need to be specified prior to arrival.
About our Transportation
The vehicle used will depend on the number of passengers as follows:
10-16 guests: 22 Seater Mercedes Bus (A/C)
6-9 guests: 14 Seater Toyota Quantum (A/C)
This style of transportation is a comfortable way to travel through the region, allowing the group to travel through the cities and parks with ease, with more opportunities to stop and either wander around or view the sites.
For the wildlife safari drives in the Kruger area we use an open safari vehicle.
For group sizes of 10 to 16, you will have a dedicated driver and tour leader.
Start and end hotels on this tour offer comfortable accommodations with en-suite bathrooms, standard facilities, and wifi. Additional amenities vary from location to location.
The tented camp accommodations on this tour are situated centrally, with easy access to the park for wildlife safari drives. Tents are typically spacious with mosquito-proof netting, comfortable bedding, and en-suite bathroom with flushing toilets and camping showers.
Please remember that hotel/lodge/camp standards can be different from what you are used to in your home country, which is part of the appeal of adventure travel.
1) Under certain circumstances, we reserve the right to change accommodation and provide something slightly different to what is described, though it will always be of similar or better standard/level.
2) Most lodges and camps do not have 24hr electricity - they usually run on generators which are routinely shut off overnight from approximately 10 pm to 5 am.
3) Lodges and camps are NOT equipped with fans or air conditioning due to the electricity constraints listed above.
4) Winter nights (June to September) can be cold, and most lodges and hotels do not have insulation or central heating. If you require additional blankets or a hot water bottle, these can be requested through your tour leader or at the reception.
Half of the people that travel with GEEO are traveling by themselves, so please don’t worry if you have no one who can join you on your trip. Our pricing is based on double occupancy or, in other words, two people to a room. You never have to pay for a single room unless you want one. GEEO can find you a roommate of the same gender. Most of our trips have a “My Own Room” option, also known as a “Single Supplement,” which is an extra fee that will allow you to have a room to yourself. If you want to room alone, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
. To see the price for the “My Own Room” option, please click here
where you can look up your trip in the extra services spreadsheet.
The nearest international airport to your joining hotel is the Cape Town International Airport.
An arrival transfer is included when you arrive on Day 1, or if you arrive up to three days prior provided that you have booked your pre-accommodation through National Geographic Journeys in our joining hotel. Due to customer experience and quality considerations, all services related to the tour must be continuous, which means if you come into Cape Town a day or more earlier, we can't include the free transfer unless we book your extra hotel nights too.
Our driver will be waiting for you with a National Geographic Journeys sign with your name on it, and they will be waiting for you outside the luggage hall. There most likely will be many signs, so please check carefully for your name.
Day 1 is an arrival day, and no activities have been planned. Check-in time will be in the afternoon. Once you arrive at the hotel, look for a note at reception from your tour leader. This note will give the details of your Welcome Meeting on Day 1, usually between 6:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m., at which you will get a chance to meet your fellow travelers, as well as learn more about how the tour will run. If you don’t see a note, please ask reception for details!
Should you need to contact G Adventures during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call their local G Adventures office. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible.
If you have purchased an arrival through G Adventures or if an arrival transfer is included in the cost of your tour, please note that:
Your arrival transfer has been arranged based on flight information provided to us. If you are advised of a flight schedule change within 48 hours of your scheduled arrival time, we will do our best to rearrange your arrival transfer however we cannot guarantee this. If your arrival transfer does not arrive within 30 minutes after you have exited the arrivals area please call the local emergency contact numbers listed below for more information.
EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS
G Adventures Local Representative (South Africa)
From outside South Africa: +27 713823286
From within South Africa: 071 3823286
If you are unable for any reason to contact our local office, please call the numbers listed below, which will connect you directly with our 24 hour Sales team, who will happily assist you.
Toll-free, North America only: 1 888 800 4100
Please read this article
on GEEO’s blog for our staff’s suggestions on the best gear to pack for your upcoming travels. You will be on the move a lot, so our advice is to pack as lightly as possible. Your baggage should be clearly labeled and restricted to one soft compact suitcase (please avoid a hard-top case), or sports bag, maximum 15kg, plus a daypack. Luggage limits on airlines are strictly enforced and space on vehicles is limited. Porters are not often available, so be prepared to carry your own bags. It is important to pack clothes for warm days and cool evenings, as well as a warm jacket for early morning wildlife safari drives. A set of smart casual clothes is also advisable. During the winter months (May to October), the temperatures can get quite cold in Namibia and Botswana. It is wise to bring plenty of layers for cool mornings and evenings. A set of smart casual clothes is also advisable.
Please be advised that if you plan to bring a drone with you, the use of drones in national parks in Southern Africa is prohibited.
- Long-sleeved shirts or sweater
- Warm gloves
- Warm hat
- Warm layers
- Compact, packable winter coat
- Light windproof/waterproof rain jacket
- Sun hat
- Personal clothing for weather in the 50’s to the 80’s – we recommend packing 7-8 days of outfits so you only have to do laundry once
- At least one pair of long pants
- Sturdy walking shoes
- Sport sandals or flip-flops
- Watch or alarm clock
- Small flashlight or headlamp
- Toiletries – your hotels will have soap and shampoo
- First-aid kit, including: lip salve, aspirin, bandaids, anti-histamine, Dramamine, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, electrolyte powder, insect repellent, extra prescription drugs you may be taking
- Lightweight silk sleep sheet
- Travel pillow
- Money belt
- Water bottle
- Phone/Tablet for internet – most hotels have WiFi
- Chargers for electronics as well converters/adapters, if needed
- Packing cubes – these are awesome
- Earplugs – these are a life-saver if you have a snoring roommate
- Snacks – packing a few granola bars is a good idea; you can buy snacks when you get there too, so don’t go crazy here
- Ziplock bags for wet clothing
- Reading/writing material
- Hand sanitizer/Baby wipes
- Passport (with photocopies)
- Travel insurance (with photocopies)
- Airline tickets (with photocopies)
- USD/EUR cash
- Credit or debit card
- G Adventures vouchers, pre-departure information, and dossier
- Any entry visas or vaccination certificates required
- GEEO Classroom action plans for your group – this is sent 10-30 days before departure
Please ask your guide/tour leader to arrange if any laundry needs to be done, so that he / she can make arrangements for you. He/She will advise guests accordingly, in advance if guests want to do laundry where it is available.
Passports and Visas
All GEEO trips require that the participant have a valid passport. Please see our general FAQ
for information on obtaining a passport. As with all of our trips, we try to provide the most accurate information we can, but governments sometimes change visa rules. It is your responsibility to double-check the information we provide below by searching here
For this program, you must have at least 9 empty pages in your passport. Namibia, for some unexplained reason, requires that you have 6 empty passport pages. That means you might need to apply for a new passport. We are not sure if this is actually enforced, but better be safe than sorry.
Americans do not need visas for any of these countries for the duration of the stay included in this tour. Non-Americans should check with their nearest embassy.
You need a passport, visa, return ticket, and adequate funds to cover your intended stay in order to enter Zimbabwe. If you are traveling to Zimbabwe for tourism, business, or transit, you may obtain a visa at the airports or other border ports-of-entry. You can expect to pay 30 USD for a 30-day/single-entry visa upon arrival at the airport. We recommend seeing Victoria Falls from both the Zimbabwean and Zambian side. You should be able to get a “Kaza” visa on arrival for $50 which is good for both Zimbabwe and Zambia.
IMPORTANT NOTE: If you have purchased a single entry visa upon arrival and then decide to leave Zimbabwe (even for a few hours) you will need to buy another visa to re-enter Zimbabwe. In this instance, you should buy a double entry visa upon arrival as it works out cheaper. Multiple entry visas cannot be obtained at the port of entry into Zimbabwe. You may enter Zimbabwe on a single entry visa and then obtain a multiple entry visa from the town office – but this may take up to 7 working days to be issued. Alternatively, a multiple entry visa can be obtained from the Zimbabwe Embassy in your country prior to departure for Zimbabwe.
The currency in South Africa is the South African Rand (ZAR). Zimbabwe uses the US Dollar and South African Rand.
Each currency can be obtained locally by changing foreign currency or by using ATMs (where available) which will disperse local currency. Your tour leader will inform you where you can change money throughout the tour and approximately how much money you will need. The easiest foreign currency to exchange for locally for any of the local currencies is the $US; however, the British Pound and Euro may also be exchanged as well. For Zimbabwe, we strongly advise that you bring ZAR or USD from your home country or exchange money before the start of the tour, to avoid delays on tour, as it can be difficult to obtain cash at ATMs.
Please note that due to past problems with forgery, $US notes that are older than the year 2006 are not accepted in Africa. Large note ($US 50, $US 100, etc) can be difficult to change in some places but will gain you the best exchange rate.
If you plan to buy your visas at borders, you will need to bring $USD cash to pay for these visas. Please note you cannot use the local currency or any other currency to buy these visas- they must be purchased in USD.
Please do not bring Travelers’ checks to Africa. They are difficult if not impossible to exchange in many places.
Visa/Plus system cards are the most widely accepted debit cards. it is harder to find machines Mastercard/Cirrus cards. We highly recommend that if you hold a Mastercard, you obtain a Visa card prior to departure and travel with both. This is also useful should something unforeseen happen to one of your cards during your travels.
While there are many ATMs in the major centers, there are no guarantees that your credit or debit cards will actually work in Africa. Check with your bank.
Credit cards can be used in major cities and towns ONLY but please do not rely on them as a method of payment because they are generally not widely accepted. You should be aware that to purchase products or services on a credit card a fee of 5%-10% usually applies. The majority of our optional activities can also be paid by credit card. Your tour leader will advise on these.
Please note that in many areas there may be occasional power-outages, where there will be no electricity for hours at a time. In addition, ATMs outside of larger centers often run out of cash or can be out of order unexpectedly. These factors could affect your ability to access money from ATMs. As such, please do not rely on credit or debit cards as your only source of money. A combination of foreign currency and debit/credit cards for cash advances is best. Always take more rather than less, as you don’t want to spoil the trip by constantly feeling short of funds.
As currency exchange rates can fluctuate often we ask that you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: www.xe.com.
Tipping is an expected, though not compulsory, component of your tour program. The gesture serves as an expression of appreciation for exceptional service, and amounts given are up to your discretion.
Tipping is one of the most direct ways that you can have a positive economic impact within the African community. Although it may not be customary for you, it is an important source of income for those in the tourism industry. Giving a tip should be seen as a formal “thank you,” and the action should in no way be awkward.
The best method of tipping someone that has served the whole group is to plan in advance, and not rush when it comes to saying goodbye. A suggestion would be for each group member to contribute anonymously by putting their tip into an envelope. This often works the best and the group should gather to present the gift to the recipient(s), offering their thanks and showing their appreciation. This method brings the action out into the open, allowing for friendly and appreciative interaction between the group and the recipient(s).
You may use the following as a guideline, all given in a per person format:
Tour leader: $7-10 USD (per day)
Driver: $5-8 USD (per day)
Local guides: $2-3 USD (per day)
Safari Guide/Driver: $2-3 USD (per day)
Restaurant Staff: 10-15% of cost of bill
We legally cannot give you any medical advice. It is very important to consult your doctor or a travel clinic about which vaccinations you will need for your trip. Please take this seriously!
We often find the best prices for purchasing flights is 60 days before departure, but of course, this varies greatly from route to route and year to year. You must wait until this trip is confirmed with the minimum number of required participants before you book your flights.
Typically, we reach the minimum number needed at least 90 days before departure. GEEO and G Adventures bear no responsibility for any flights purchased before the trip is confirmed. You can find out whether this trip has been confirmed here
This program begins in Cape Town and ends in Victoria Falls. Please double-check our itinerary for the date by which you must arrive in Cape Town. You can arrive at any time you choose, but try to make it in time for our 6:00 p.m. Welcome Meeting on Day 1. Your trip ends in Victoria Falls and you can depart any time on that final day.
Plugs and Converters
There are two components to provide external power to your device: adapters and transformers. The adapter is the plug, adapting the prongs on a standard U.S. two to three-pronged power cord to match the prongs required by the local outlets. The transformer changes the local voltage to that required by your device.
You will want to bring plug converters for Plug types C, G, M, D, and N. Their voltage is 220-230 Volts. U.S. outlets are 120V. Most new devices (phones and laptops) can handle the different voltage rates, but some devices only work on the U.S. standard of 120V. Check your device to see what voltage range it handles. Most transformer blocks will have an “Input” line that defines its voltage capacity. For example, “Input: 100-240V” means that it will work on voltages from 100V to 240V. If your transformer can’t handle the different voltage, you’ll need to purchase a voltage converter. You can find world regional voltage converters power packs at various vendors.
Before you decide on traveling with GEEO, it is important that you read all of the information about the program you are considering. Remember, our programs are quite adventurous.
- We use a mix of transportation that gets our guests from location to location safely.
- You must be able to easily carry or roll your luggage, so do not over-pack.
- We recommend always carrying snacks with you. Meals can sometimes be far apart.
Hopefully this is the kind of adventure you are interested in!
While it is our intention to adhere to the routes described on our website, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable, to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The information on our website is a general guide to the tour and region, and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered. Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.
This trip takes place over the Southern Hemisphere’s winter. It is a great time to travel in this region as it will be relatively dry and the days will be comfortable temperatures between the high 50s and 80s. At night in the desert it can get quite cold, so make sure you pack warm clothes.