Kilimanjaro

Please note you will be emailed out a set of Kilimanjaro Team Reference Notes upon registration. This extensive booklet includes detailed information to assist in the planning of your trip; from travel and medical advice to equipment lists and photography tips. The following is to serve as a helpful guideline but please feel free to call or e-mail, if you have any further questions. Our team is here to help!

Why do you choose such a different route compared to other companies?

Historically Kilimanjaro sees more traffic on certain routes and less on others. We try to combine a bit of a longer route on the way up to assist you in acclimatising and enjoying the very scenic terrain, then link up with a more direct descent to facilitate the return to town and the start of your safari. Porters also seem to like the combination, as it gives them a bit more work, yet is an easy and straightforward way to come off the mountain. Contact our office for route details.
 

What is the best time of the year to go?

Kilimanjaro is large enough to have its own weather system, so the weather can be somewhat unpredictable.  The rainy months are April to mid-June and November with the most popular months to go are in later June to September, and then from mid-January to mid-March.

How hard is it really?

Contrary to what most people believe, Kilimanjaro is not just a “hike”. You need to be comfortable carrying a backpack, have a reasonable level of cardiovascular fitness and enjoy sleeping in a tent! Summit day can be very long and cold, but very rewarding especially when the sun comes up!

There is so much to choose from safari wise after my climb, can you offer me some options?

You are right, there is A LOT to choose from and seeing as your trip may be a once-in-a-lifetime experience, we want to make sure you see everything you want to. There are plenty of lodges to choose from and the properties that we visit come from extensive research. Our staff often spend time visiting and exploring the newer lodges to secure some of the best choices out there. We feel that our selections are top quality and offer some of the best from the variety to choose from. Contact our office for specific details for our safari lodges.

I would like to also visit Zanzibar after my climb, is this possible?

Of course it is and we highly recommend it! From the spice market in Stone Town to the coastlines of the island; the 45-minute flight from Arusha transports you to one of the great gems of Africa.  We can arrange your schedule to either go out after a safari or head out to the island straight after your climb. Our office is more than happy to provide advice on this magnificent holiday location.

Does my guide continue on to the safari with me? If not, who leads the safari?

Your local mountain guide will not continue on the safari, but you will be passed onto one of our excellent local safari guides that will escort you on your safari and return you back to your tented camp/lodge at the end of each day.

What are the accommodations like on the safari?

World class. We stay in tented camps that have actual running water, electricity and outdoor showers. When we stay in lodges, there are huge sitting rooms with picture windows to watch the sunsets from. Food is second to none with the properties serving excellent cuisine!

What are the days like on safari?

Typically you can expect 4-7 hours in a Landcruiser, stopping frequently for photos and to watch the amazing wildlife in their daily routine. You will arrive at your tented camp where a welcome drink is usually served, followed by free time in which to freshen up before sundowner drinks and dinner. After a sumptuous breakfast at the start of the next day, you start all over again!

Is Africa safe? Is the area around Kilimanjaro safe?

With any overseas travel, it is important to know your surroundings and the situation on the ground. We work hard with our local outfitters to assure that local situations, if any, are closely monitored to ensure your safety. For years now, the areas on and around the mountain have seen no conflict. In fact, the level of local industry and prosperity is thriving in Arusha! We always suggest that you check with your consulate before travelling to check on any travel advisories.

Do I really need to get a Yellow Fever vaccination?

It all depends on where you are travelling from and through enroute to Tanzania. It is recommended by Adventure Consultants given that this advice changes frequently and you never know what the Tanzanian officials standpoint on any given day will be. Please talk to your doctor prior to travelling.

What are the skills/prior experiences required for this climb?

This is one of our beginner trips; therefore the only thing required is to have a thirst for adventure! It helps to be able to carry a light backpack, have a good base level of fitness and have some prior experience sleeping in a tent.

What is the conditioning level needed for this climb?

A good general level of fitness is required and being able to walk uphill on uneven ground for extended periods of time is advantageous.

How many climbers will be on this expedition?

Typically we like to keep this trip between 9 and 12 members, but our standard departures can run with a minimum of four people. If you have your own group of four, you can then also pick and choose the dates that best suit you.

Can I contact other climbers or guides for this expedition?

Of course! The closer you get to your trip, please contact the office as we are happy to pass on your contact details to the other team members.

Will I be sharing a tent or room with other climbers? Is there a single room option on this trip?

When in Arusha and on safari, the hotels/lodges are priced on a twin-share basis and on the mountain; two team members will share a tent. There is the option of a single room and mountain tent supplement, please contact our office for details.

How heavy will my pack be?

Typically 15-25 lbs (about 6 to 10kgs). Each day, you will be carrying water, snacks, other essential items and any layers that you will need for the day. Porters will carry the bulk of your equipment and clothing, which will be awaiting your arrival at your camp.

What kind of food do you have on the mountain?

Our chefs are very well known on the mountain for being able to produce fresh salads, fried chicken, tasty soups and toasted sandwiches halfway up the mountain! Our menu is varied and tasty. Make sure you let us know if you have any specific dietary requirements, as we can cater for almost anything.

How long is a typical day on the mountain?

After waking up with a pan of warm water and a hot drink delivered to your tent door, we will meet for breakfast around 7am and hit the trail by about 8am, usually pulling into camp in the afternoon by 3 or 4pm.

What type of communication is available on the climb?

The local guides carry radios and cell phones, and are in daily contact with our agent's Arusha office.  You will find that your own cell phone will have reception for a majority of the expedition, but do double check the cost of your global roaming with your telecommunications supplier. Local SIM cards are easily available for purchase and offer much better reception, so please advise if you would like assistance with arranging one.

What sort of hotels do we stay at in the city?

Typically we stay at 4 star hotels in Arusha. Each year, we are constantly trying to make sure that the hotels we choose maintain the level of customer service and quality to align with AC standards. Contact our office for further details.

What time should I arrive and where do I meet my guides?

Please plan to fly into Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO), where you will also clear Tanzanian customs.  Typically we will arrange an airport transfer to bring you to the hotel. Prior to your trip, our office will send you a final details letter including hotel details, information on your guide, details on when and where you will meet your guides, as well as other pertinent last minute information.

What if I arrive early or depart late?

We ask that you try to arrive on time, so early is great! The reason for this is so that your bags have a chance to catch you if for some reason, they are delayed and you arrive later than the group. If you do arrive early, we will be happy to help you with your hotel arrangements and additional transfers. The same goes for departing later, contact the office for details. 

How much should I budget for this expedition? How much cash should I plan to bring?

Usually, members are really excited to purchase local artisan crafts and most of the places that sell such items, don’t take credit cards. There are cash machines in town, but in the villages, cash is king! Most get by with US$400-$800 for gifts and additional expenses.

How much should I tip my guide staff?

Tipping is mandatory on the mountain as your guides, porters and camp staff work very hard whilst on the mountain.  Suggested tipping amounts will be indicated in your final details letter which will be sent 3-4 weeks prior to your departure, as this is dependent on your group size and the number of local staff employed.

Are there any entry or visa requirements?

Please do check this with your travel agent prior to travelling. For some nationalities, it is required that you have your Tanzanian visa issued prior to arrival and for others, this can be issued on arrival.  

What insurance do we need to get?

On all of our international expeditions, there is a requirement for each expedition member to have insurance to cover any personal or medical mishaps that may occur before or during the expedition.  This should cover you for any costs incurred in the event of any illness, medical emergency or evacuation that occurs while on the expedition as well as trip cancellation, baggage loss, damage or theft, or any other such mishap that may occur.

Do I need evacuation insurance?

Yes, it is very important. Many of our expeditions are in remote places with no roads and third world medical services. In the unlikely event that you get sick, you want to get to good medical care ASAP.

Who do you recommend for insurance?

Coverage varies based on your nationality and the trip that you are taking with us.  When you have confirmed your spot on the trip with us, we will send you comprehensive information on various insurance options which will serve as a good starting point for obtaining the best coverage available for yourself.

What is Trip Cancellation Insurance?

Trip cancellation insurance is an option that may allow you to cancel your trip without losing the total cost of the trip. Adventure Consultants highly recommends cancellation insurance for all of our trips. If circumstances cause us to cancel a trip (minimum numbers are not reached or travel to a country becomes too dangerous) then we refund your fees paid, but trip cancellation insurance covers your airfare and any other costs you may have incurred.

What is your cancellation policy? Refund policy?

Once you have paid your deposit your trip is confirmed, subject to payment of the balance of fees owing 90 days prior to your trip commencement date. An expedition trek member may then cancel his/her participation on the following basis:

  • Cancellations outside of 90 days will result in the loss of the trip deposit.
  • For cancellations made within 89 - 60 days of the trip commencement date we reserve the right to retain 50% of the balance payment.
  • For cancellations within 59 days of the departure date a cancellation fee of 100% of the full fee applies.



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