Although Tanzania has many local dialects, Swahili is the official language. English is Tanzania’s official business language. Most people you will come in contact with will be quite fluent in English. You may find it useful to buy a Swahili-English Phrase book on arrival.

Tanzania cultures are nearly opposite to Western cultures in many ways. When in a rural village, it is important to respect the local culture so we will always be welcome. Most of the Tanzanians you will encounter in a village have had little exposure to foreigners. In all cases, communication is a great path to mutual understanding and if you should get into any misunderstandings, feel free to talk with your guide.


The currency in Tanzania is the Tanzania Shilling. The US Dollar, however, is most widely used. Foreign currency can be exchanged for local currency at the banks and bureau de changes. Changing money on the streets is prohibited and dangerous.

USD CASH:  Torn notes and old series notes are not readily accepted so we strongly recommend you bring the newer series year 2006 and above notes.

Whilst larger denomination bills are acceptable, we recommend you also bring some smaller denomination bills as sometimes change is not easily attainable.

CREDIT CARDS: Although some hotels/curio shops accept Visa & Master card Credit Cards. Please expect surcharges of between 5-10%. American Express is not widely accepted. ID/Passport may be required at some places


ATM’s:  Many major cities in Tanzania have ATM’s (that accept Master card and Visa). A pin code is required, and the cash withdrawal limit is about US$400 per day which you receive in local Tanzanian Shillings.


Currently, visas are available for most nationalities at TZ Airports & Border posts (if you intend purchasing a visa on arrival, please check with the TZ diplomatic reps abroad or check with us prior, to make sure this option is available).  The cost of a tourist visa is US$50 per person and $100 per person for American citizens, to be paid in cash on arrivals.  It is not necessary to bring any pictures to get your visa, but please be aware that your passport should have at least 2 blank pages and should be valid for at least 6months from the date you arrive.

Nowadays its possible to obtain VISA online, please visit the following link for more information .  


It’s worthwhile to arrange an appointment with your heath professional prior to travel. For those with pre-existing health problems an earlier appointment is recommended.  All travelers should insure they have adequate travel health insurance.


Corona Virus travel preparation (What to do) – As for Now Tanzania is probably one of the safe countries to travel at this moment, in additional to that Tanzania has good western hospitals where you can get the right treatment to recover incase of emergency.  Commercial flights are operating to/from Tanzania, in order to inter Tanzania, passengers must provide proof of a negative COVID-19 Test performed within 72 hours prior boarding the flight. Passengers will be required to fill in Health-Surveillance Form in the plane or any other transport means and submit them to Port Health authorities upon arrival. The Government of Tanzania is Implementing temperature scanning for all international  passengers arriving into Tanzania. If you show symptoms of COVID -19 upon arrival, you may be required to quarantine for 14 days at the Government-designated facilities at your own expenses. For more information please visit WHO and NaTHNaC Websites

Tanzania heath authorities announced new guidelines for obtaining COVID-19 clearance certificate for both Nationals and foreigners who plans to travel outside the country to the countries where such certificate are required.  The COVID-19 screening fees for foreigner is currently $100.  The Tests can only be obtained at the Regional Hospitals, and the Regional Chief chemist’s office will supervise the screening at the National Laboratory.   

The Screening result will also be taken to the Regional Chief Medical office and issued within 72 hours for those who don’t have the infection and their names sent to point of departure for verification. Once you are already in Tanzania, you should continue to take sensible precaution and prevention steps to reduce the risk of infection, make sure you always have the following in your handbag; Hand Sanitizer, Face Musk, disinfective wipes and vitamins Pills.


Tanzania has re-introduced health desks at all ports of entry at Mainland Tanzania & Zanzibar. Note: all travelers travelling to Tanzania from or on transit from a Yellow fever infected country (example: countries like Kenya, Ethiopia, etc. even if you are only transiting through these countries) You will be required to show proof by means of a yellow fever vaccination certificate, so Please ensure you bring yellow fever vaccination certificates with you to show on entry, if requested.


Should you have a diabetic condition; there are no grave situations you should be concerned about while traveling on safari. A great deal of the meals provided to you on safari will likely be very similar to what you habitually eat at home (e.g. marinated chicken, beef, salad, fruit, etc.). However, be mindful that some packed lunches supplied by the lodges or tented camps may include foods high in carbs such as bread, fruit and juice boxes, as well as other foods high in protein.

With regards to essential diabetic medications and supplies, make sure to carry a letter from your doctor stating said supplies you will be bringing with you and a copy of the actual prescription is also recommended. In addition, carry hard candy or glucose tablets with you on game drives or other safari activities. Insulin-dependent individuals are encouraged to pack more than one bottle of insulin and extra pump supplies, as they are not available to purchase in Tanzania.


Be sure to bring special and personal prescriptions and medications. Please let us know of medical conditions that may require special attention on safari. Malaria is endemic throughout these areas.  There are a number of prophylactics available and we strongly recommend that you consult your G.P/family doctor/travel clinic for advice on the most appropriate anti malarial medication. Bring mosquito repellent (also good for Tsetse flies).

Mosquito nets at lodges or camps – Just about every lodge or camp provides mosquito nets in their rooms. Usually, if there is no mosquito net in a room, attendant will spay insect repellent during turndown service (while you are having dinner). Many places located at high altitude have little mosquito activity during the night because temperatures can be very cool. Mosquitoes tend to be most active in the early evening, so wear repellent on your exposed skin, and protect yourself by wearing long sleeves, long pants and socks.


If you are traveling with a CPAP Breathing Machine and/or Portable Oxygen Concentrators devices, it is mandatory that you bring a rechargeable battery pack (equipped with a minimum runtime of 8 hours) that is of universal voltage (120V – 240V). The majority of the lodges and camps you will be staying at do not run on 24-hour electricity and turn off their generators for the night until daylight.

While out on safari activities, guests are advised to charge their CPAP battery throughout the day so that they can be used overnight when power may not be available at their accommodations. (Note that at some lodges there will extra charge for 24hrs running generator)


Most Hotels/Lodges in Cities in Tanzania run on electricity with many having standby generators. However please be aware that many tented camps and lodges at the parks do not provide 24-hours electricity, thus they use generators, which are run for just a few hours each day. These are often turned off after dinner and on again just before dawn. We recommend that you carry a flashlight and extra batteries for your video cameras, digital cameras & for any electrical appliances you may require on the trip. The electrical voltage in Tanzania is 220V-240V; 50Hz.

A rectangular 3-square pin UK plug adapter is required to use electrical appliances including video cameras and digital cameras.  If you come from a country where voltage is 120V (or lower than 220V), Please take note of the following:

Check to see the equipment you are carrying has a dual voltage power supply; we recommend you check that the input reads 100/120V – 240V. If this is not so, then you will need to bring a plug adapter, as well as a transformer/converter.   Some hotels/lodges/camps have hairdryers, however not all have hairdryers; so if it is important to you, please bring one.  If you have a health concern that requires you to charge your medical equipment at all times, please kindly advise us beforehand and we can plan accordingly.

plug adapter1


We provide 2 litters of bottled drinking water per person per day. All our safari vehicles are equipped with a small refrigerator to keep your drinks chilled for you to enjoy during your safari. Avoid drinking water from the tap. Extra bottled water may be purchased locally before embarking on safari. It is also available at the game lodges.   At the lodges/camps & up market hotels in Tanzania, food is of a reasonably high standard.

A dietary restriction does not prevent you from going on safari, so any Special meal requests must be communicated to us in writing at the time of booking (Vegetarian, Vegan, Food allergies, gluten free, etc).  We do need to know in advance if you are vegetarian or have special meal requirements or food allergies so we can carter these needs. For those who require a gluten free diet, we would recommend you bring a few gluten-free snacks or If you require any special health supplement, please bring it with you.  Your guide will be with you throughout the entire safari and he can also assist you by speaking to the kitchen management, should this be necessary.


Your private safari will allow the flexibility of how you choose to spend your time. A daily decision to be made is whether to have breakfast and lunch at the tented camp or lodge or a picnic box in the bush. While early morning game drives with the sunrise can be breathtaking (and highly encouraged), there will be likely occasions where you desire to stay in the bush and continue your adventure without returning to the lodging. Picnic boxes for breakfast and lunch are prepared daily at each respective accommodation

according to your itinerary. The typical breakfast box may consist of combination of bread, pastries, juice, banana, apple, hardboiled-egg, bacon or sausages. Your driver will also provide ‘French-press’ coffee to get your morning started. The typical lunch boxes consist of various items such as a piece of chicken, sandwich, banana, apple, juice, muffin and chocolate/sweets (If you have any special dietary requirements, please let us know and we will plan accordingly).

Please discuss these options with your driver/guide the evening before so that he can make appropriate arrangements and the next days activities can be planned accordingly.  However, please note that sometimes the quality of the packed meals are not always up to clients expectations and decisions need to be made whether to opt for hot meals and lose out of critical game viewing opportunities. Having said this, there will be days when returning to the lodge/camp for a hot meal makes more sense.


Africa Serendipity Safaris does not restrict your mileage during safari, game viewing within the parks is from 6am to 6pm, so we plan your itinerary according to the designated area for game drives on that given day thus park regulations must be observed (these are posted at each park entry point. If doubt please ask your guide).  

While some days you may decide to set out by sunrise, other days you can have a slower paced breakfast before start your daily exploration. In some parks, however, it is best to view game early morning and late afternoons as animals tend to be less active during the hot hours.  We recommend early game drives especially in Serengeti & Ngorongoro, where you can depart with breakfast boxes and lunch boxes.   Simply sit down with your guide at the end of the day to plan your safari schedule for the following day.

Your driver/guide will provide you with suggestions for game drives and other activities based on wildlife location & weather, but of course this is a private safari and is completely flexible – so you do have the freedom to choose how you wish to explore.  Patience is a key factor in wildlife viewing. We prefer not to race off to animal sightings, as it could be more rewarding to observe a certain animal’s behavior, and learn more about that animal as often something exciting always happens out in the bush! It will be of great benefit to you to communicate with your driver/guide on your interest in specific animals and what level of game drives fits your requirements. Rest assured your driver/guide will do his utmost to meet and exceed your expectations.


Many roads in the parks are unpaved, dusty and bumpy. Dust affects people with allergies to dust and those wearing contact lenses. Bumpy roads often cause problems to people who have back problems and old injuries (We will need to know well in advance if you do have problems that may be affected by drives on bumpy roads), we can provide additional back pillows for extra comfort.

While our vehicles are customized and equipped for rough roads, we still always recommend our guests to always fasten their seat belts and hold on when standing on their seat to enjoy the view through the popped-up roof. Please also make sure that your cameras and other electronic equipment are always safely stored in case of any damages due to bumpy roads.


Throughout your safari, there are various areas with public bathroom facilities such as ranger stations, museums, visitor centers, camps, lodges and picnic sites.  At Lodges & most Tented Camps, flush toilets are available.  On camping safaris, Some toilets are flush type whilst others are pit latrines. (Please check to see first that it is safe before using.)

We recommend you have your own roll of toilet paper. Wet wipes are handy items to carry along as are miniature disinfectant spray bottles. If frequent bathroom stops are required, please speak to the driver/guide who will do his utmost to accommodate these stops.


Insects are present in significant numbers in Tanzania depending on location and weather. The altitude & temperate climate of North Tanzania result in lesser insect concentration than in other parts of Tanzania. Flies are a nuisance, especially near villages where cow dung is plentiful as well as near the Wildebeest migration, where herd droppings are plentiful.

Tsetse flies thrive mostly in thick bush & woodlands, their bites are painful and can sometimes cause an allergic reaction, with itchiness and swelling. (Fly Swats will be found handy!!) Mosquitoes, although present, are known to be not as active during the day as they are from dusk to dawn (mosquito repellant highly recommended)

We recommend that dark colored clothes are avoided and that when driving through insect infested areas, you wear light colored clothes, long sleeves, long pants, socks, (carry a swat) and make sure your windows are rolled all the way up.  You may want to consider bringing along some ‘Gear insect repellant” that you spray your clothes with the night before…


Viewing wildlife from the vehicle is one way of experiencing Africa however the other way to experience African Nature is to be out a vehicle on walking Safari, cycling/quad biking, canoeing, Balloon Safari and a variety of cultural excursions that will give you the opportunity to see Tanzania from a different perspective! Of course, you are in no way obliged to take part in these activities just choose and pick whatever takes your fancy. Our activities are described in detail on our website.

Since you are on the level of the wildlife and out of the protection of a vehicle you feel more vulnerable. For many this slight element of risk only enhances the total wildlife experience. Although the organizers of these activities try as much as possible to avoid dangerous situations and train their guides accordingly, they do not have any control over irrational behaviour of wild animals. All guests who participate in these activities must realize they are conducting a potential dangerous activity and there is always a risk of wildlife harming humans. These accidents are extremely rare but the organizers of these activities would like to make you aware of the risk.   Please note that this applies to all adventure excursions that you have chosen on your safari, whether it is a canoeing safari, trekking, night game drive, hot air ballooning, cycling or horse riding. These excursions, although exciting and adventure-filled, do carry an element of risk. (Whilst the organizers of these activities will try their best to ensure that our clients and staff are not in any danger, they will accept no liability in the event of any injury, death or damage to belongings in such situations).

A safari can be tiring thus Zanzibar Island is a tranquil.  Few days on the beach paradise at the Indian Ocean vacation in Africa, amidst soft and white sands are a great way to relax at the end of your trip. Thanks to its southern equator location, Zanzibar has a tropical climate allowing you to plan your seaside vacation in Eastern Africa at any time of the year without any extreme variability in temperatures.  The Island offers travelers the history enthusiast, the underwater realm explorer, coastal wanderer, the spice cuisine enthusiast or active-water buff and many more.  Zanzibar has varied beachfront and Stone Town hotels located in distinct areas of the island. Option include staying in the north, east, south and west seasides to distinct, private islands like Mnemba and Chumbe.


Many Camps/Lodges have their own rules on ages, but Africa Serendipity Safaris we are flexible (It is rare to take babies and toddlers on safari although it can be done)…..Six years old is a good age,” in our opinion.  Many Camps/lodges have age restrictions and that is six years and older” though some lodges accept infants and toddlers. 

It’s not just a matter of what to do with young kids, but how they will adjust to long international flights, the time difference, and early morning wake-up times on safari, also some long hours on the safari vechicle during game drives (wildlife watching takes patience) and it can be hot and dusty in the parks, roads may be bumpy which is tiring even for adults.  You know your kid, but often waiting until a child is a little older makes a better experience for everyone.

By age of Six years and older, children can engage with the guide or someone from a local village, and a trip such as this can really have a lasting impression from these kinds of interactions.” Also by this recommendable age, children tend to behave better out on game drives and back at the lodge.  If you want to bring your small children on safari, please get in touch with us so that we can help to design a child friendly itinerary.


There are many shopping opportunities when on safari; Popular shopping items include: wooden African masks, wood carved animals; wooden African bowls, paintings, table cloths, Masaai beadwork, spears, drums, t-shirts, hats, coffee table books, African attire, Tribal musical instruments, local African gins & liquors, children’s African folk tale books, African Jewelry, Jewelry especially involving Tanzanite (a exquisite gemstone which is only found in Tanzania).

Many gift shops at the lodges as well as large Curio Shops in and around Arusha, accept credit cards & can reliably ship items abroad. We do however, encourage you to buy direct from the markets as well – we would recommend the Masaai market in Arusha.  Bargaining is required.


Most hotels/lodges/camps have safes in the room. Please use them. If they do not please contact the lodge/camps General Manager. It must be noted that the lodge/camp or Africa Serendipity Safaris will not be held liable for any loss or theft of your valuables.  Valuables include jewelry, cellphones, electronics, cameras, money, etc.  As in all countries, security is basically a matter of common sense. Crime is not rare in big cities as well as in small towns in Tanzania.

Precautions must be taken. We recommend you avoid walking in the streets after dark; avoid leaving valuables or large amounts of money in your hotel room (unless in safe) or vehicle or carrying it with you. Avoid wearing valuable chains, watches, earrings & cameras as well as freely swinging handbags that can be easily snatched. Beware of conmen….


It must be clearly understood that these are adventure safaris and there are certain dangers and risks, which are inevitable. Whilst every care is taken for the safety and comfort of our clients, the company accepts no liability for all or any of the following:

  • Change of itinerary due to road and weather conditions.
  • Sickness, infection, injury or death of the clients, howsoever caused.
  • Damage or loss of property of any client, howsoever caused.
  • Damages, directly or indirectly, arising out of delays in departure or arrival including delays occasioned by the missing of road, rail, ship or aircraft connections.

It is therefore understood, on receiving a clients’ booking that necessary insurance covers against these and other risks have been taken care of by the client. We urge our clients to purchase a comprehensive travel insurance plan that covers events such at trip cancellation, delay or interruption, delayed or lost baggage, accident, illness and evacuation, emergencies, 24-hr medical assistance & travelers assistance, to cover the span of the trip.

We request you to come with an extra copy of the cover so we can have this in our files, so we can assist you should anything go wrong when you are on safari.


Please be advised that the aircraft you will be traveling on for safari does not have the same carrying capacity as the international flight you used to travel to this country.  Most domestic flights within East Africa have a luggage restriction of 15kg per person in soft or duffel bags. The 15kg per person which includes all hand luggage and bags. Bags that do not meet these requirements will be left behind .  Hence excess luggage may be subjected to US$3 to $5 per kg if it can be accommodated. It is important to know that if the flight is full, pilot may refuse to carry excess weight for reasons of safety.

If you choose to check-in all your luggage, please ensure you carry with you in your carry-on luggage all essential items including but not limited to: Medication, camera, laptops, iPods, an extra set(s) of clothing, essential toiletries, reading glasses (small amount as permitted by airlines). Your attention in this matter will avoid disappointments and also reduce delays in the bush.

Please find attached sample pictures of bags that are acceptable and the ones that do not comply. Kindly consider this important information.


Suitcases are ok if there are 2-4 persons only in the vehicle, otherwise we will NOT take suitcases, so baggage size must be reasonable. (One backpack or soft-sided duffle bag per person max. 20kgs is ok). Please carry only what you need while on safari and store the rest in Arusha if your itinerary allows you, so you can collect this on your return. During Safari pack light, store excess un-needed baggage at appropriate points so pick up is easily handled.     


Sometimes owing to short connection times or delays caused from your origin flight-baggage do tend to get delayed. If this does happen: please clearly mention on the Baggage Irregularity form  – your duration of stay in Tanzania and contact details (these are of African Serendipity for the period you will be with us and those in ZNZ after you have left Arusha).


FOR ZANZIBAR: The name & address of the hotel(s) in Zanzibar you will be staying at.


Tipping is customary on a Tanzanian Safari/Trek. Most of our safaris & treks are Private, i.e. small groups, couple of friends, families, honeymooners etc. We recommend that tipping is usually done at the end of the trip and given directly to the person it is meant for

Below is a recommended guideline for tipping:

Safari Driver/Guide:  US$20 per day per driver from party (You may opt for more- this is at your discretion)

Gratuity box;  Available at most lodges/tented camps reception area. We recommend this as your tip is then distributed fairly amongst all staff

Porters at lodges/tented camps: US$2-3 per porter

Safari cook (Camping safaris):  US$10 – $15 per day from party

Mountain Crew:  Separate tipping guideline applies, please contact us


Casual, comfortable and easy to wash clothes are recommended. The goal is to pack lightly and comfortable wear.  During game drives do plan to dress in layers so you can adjust to temperature changes as early morning game drives can be quite cold depending on the time of year while daytime temperatures can get quite warm. Cool light clothing for the day is best to wear on safari.  Stick to neutral or khaki colors and avoid wearing dark colors clothes as these tend to attract tsetse flies. Wide brimmed hats, sunglasses, sunscreen, insect repellent are a necessity.

After sunset, we recommend that you wear long pants, long-sleeved shirts, socks and spray insect repellent to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes.  A jacket will be found handy especially in the evenings & early mornings. Footwear should be low heeled and comfortable. However at some lodges gentlemen are required to wear long trousers for the evening meals. Topless sunbathing is not permitted and ladies should wear appropriate clothing in public places. (Too short shorts, too low fronted tops, etc are considered disrespectful to the Tanzanian people).

Should you be traveling to Zanzibar, Please dress modestly when sightseeing in Stone Town or visiting anywhere outside of the beach resorts in Zanzibar. Women should not wear sleeveless or revealing tops and short skirts or thigh-high shorts (Capri trousers or at least knee-length shorts are fine). Men should wear shirts, pants or knee-length shorts. During Ramadan, take particular care with dress and show respect by not eating or drinking in the public places.    Please contact us for further information….


Our list of suitable items, but not limited, would include the following;

  • comfortable walking shoes (i.e. sneakers, boots)
  • a pair of sandals or flip-flops
  • Casual, loose-fitting clothing, light cotton clothing is best (khaki, brown, green & beige colours)
  • warm fleece or sweater
  • Lightweight jacket or windbreaker
  • Light cotton trousers or convertible pants
  • Jeans or safari trousers for evenings and cooler days
  • Shirts/Blouses with long sleeves
  • Light tops & Pyjamas
  • T-shirts
  • Shorts
  • Wide-brimmed hat
  • Bandana/ Scarf (for dust)
  • Swimsuit
  • Cotton socks and underwear
  • Light, compact raincoat during the rainy months

Other items

  • Large duffle/Soft bag rather than a suitcase & a day pack   
  • Passport,
  • Journal for recording daily observations and encounters
  • Sunglasses
  • Contact Lens Solution, extra contact lenses or pair of glasses in case of eye irritation from the dust (note: Tanzania can be very dusty).
  • Sunscreen /Sun block
  • Lip balm
  • Moisturizers
  • Insect repellent
  • Anti-bacterial hand sanitizer (spray/gel), wet wipes, Kleenex
  • Personal toiletry requirements (toothpaste, toothbrush; deodorant, etc) + hand towel
  • Hairbrush/comb
  • Camera and extra batteries, charger, memory cards
  • Binoculars
  • Flashlight
  • UK plug adapter
  • Small Personal Medical Kit including (Aspirin, anti-malarial pills, cold and allergy medicine, band-aids, anti- diahorrea medicine, antibiotic cream, tummy-ache medication, antihistamine cream, anti-allergy medication, etc.)
  • For mountain trekking checklist please visit the Mountain climbing page in our website
  • Sleeping bags + towels (for Kilimanjaro trek)

(Sleeping bags can be hired locally, limited choice and we have to take what is available)



List of recommended items for gifts;

  1. Most local schools are in dire need of school supplies. Note books, pens, crayons, book bags/small back packs, coloring books, picture-story books, chalk boards & chalk, study posters, are widely appreciated. (These can also be bought in Arusha)
  2. Boarding schools: Mosquito nets, blankets, toothbrushes/paste, soap,  are appreciated
  3. Fun items: Soccer balls, hula hoops, lego, always bring smiles from the young ones!

We insist that gifts be given direct to the children at the school (NOT at the roadside) as this will encourage the children to go to school.  Please contact us if you would like to send in your donation to orphanage centers or if you would like to receive more information on this.


AIRTEL & VODACOM  is the major cell provider in Tanzania with good reception throughout Tanzania (incl. Moshi, Kilimanjaro, Arusha, Tarangire, Ngorongoro Crater, Manyara, certain parts of Serengeti; major towns in Tanzania, Zanzibar & Kenya). Currently, there is no reliable reception in the northern and western regions of the Serengeti. For people requiring constant use of a phone while in Tanzania, you may wish to purchase a SIM CARD when in Tanzania.

However please ensure you have at least half a day in Arusha before your safari to purchase one. you should be able to register SIM CARD at an official store or registration agent using your passport & fingerprint. ‘AIRTEL CARDS or VODACOM CARDS’ use prepaid airtime ranging from $5 to $50 which will allow you to make/ receive international calls at quite reasonable rates. To top-up your SIM card, simply buy credit card (Vodacom or Airtel) at the official store, your hotel in Town or big shops/supermarket, you’ll get a scratch card with a code that you then need to enter into your phone to top-up. We recommend Vodacom for the vast majority of travellers to Tanzania  but if you’re spending significant time in the Serengeti, consider Airtel instead.


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