Participation on a safari requires that you be in generally good health. All guests must understand that while a high level of fitness is not required, a measure of physical activity is involved in all African Safaris. It is essential that persons with any medical problems and/or related dietary restrictions make them known to us well before departure.
You must seek medical advice from your doctor or a travel clinic before you depart on your safari. It is important to plan ahead as you may need vaccinations. For detailed health information for travelers to Tanzania visit cdc.gov/travel/. Go to tab for 'Destinations' and scroll down to Tanzania.
Malaria is one of the greatest potential health risks in Tanzania and antimalarial drugs are recommended. The antimalarial drug named Malarone may be the best choice and it should be strongly considered as opposed to other types of antimalarial drugs – consult your doctor or travel clinic. Other antimalarial drugs include Larium and Doxycycline. For a detailed discussion on malaria and the different antimalarial drugs available, visit cdc.gov/malaria/travelers/.
Whether or not you are taking antimalarial drugs, it is important to protect yourself from mosquito bites from dusk till dawn. This is when the type of mosquito whose bite transmits malaria is active. Precautionary measures include using DEET based insect repellant, covering up before dusk and wearing long sleeved shirts, trousers, socks and shoes in the evenings. You should certainly cover up and use insect repellant before going to dinner each evening. Pay particular attention to your ankles and legs as mosquitoes, if present, tend to hover at ankle level. For more detailed information on how to protect yourself from mosquitoes please refer to the ‘Safari Annoyances’ section under the ‘Insects’ heading for some tips and recommendations.
Travelers should be informed that regardless of the methods employed (antimalarial pills, other protective measures, etc.), malaria still might be contracted. There is a higher risk of Malaria on Zanzibar and other low-lying regions in Tanzania. Malaria symptoms can develop as early as about a week after initial exposure in a malaria-infested area and as long as 1 year after departure from an area, after preventative medication has been completed. Travelers should understand that malaria can be treated effectively early in the course of the disease, but delay of therapy can have serious or even fatal consequences. Individuals who have symptoms of malaria should seek prompt evaluation as soon as possible.
TAll vaccinations (with the exception of the Yellow Fever Vaccination for some individuals as described below) are completely voluntary for entry into Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda or Zanzibar.
IMPORTANT: The Tanzania government has issued new rules (as of August 2012) that require some individuals to receive a Yellow Fever Vaccination for entry into Tanzania. You would get this certificate from the travel clinic where you received the Yellow Fever Vaccination.
Those individuals that are required to show proof of the Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate are as follows:
All travelers flying to Tanzania through a Yellow Fever Infected Country (such as Kenya, Ethiopia, Rwanda and Uganda) that remain in transit for 12 hours or more and/or leave the immediate airport vicinity are required to show proof of the Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate upon arrival into Tanzania.
For example, this would include those persons flying to Tanzania through Nairobi, Kenya where by the traveler leaves the Nairobi airport and/or spends more than 12 hours in transit at the Nairobi Airport. For those clients affected, please make sure you have a Yellow Fever Vaccination Card to prove the vaccine was given. Please pack this certificate in your carry-on along with your passport.
Those individuals that are NOT required to have the Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate are:
All travelers flying 'non-stop' from the U.S./Europe/Asia/Middle East to Tanzania such as they do not transit through a Yellow Fever Infected Country. For example, this includes the KLM non-stop flight from Amsterdam to Kilimanjaro, the British Airways non-stop flight from London to Dar es Salaam and the Turkish Airlines non-stop flight from Istanbul to Kilimanjaro. Additionally, those travelers that have less than a 12-hour layover in a yellow fever infected country AND do not leave the airport are NOT required to have the Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate. For example, if you have a 4-hour layover in Nairobi en route to Kilimanjaro AND you do NOT leave the airport during your 4-hour layover, then you would NOT need to have the Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate.
We recommend that all clients, if possible, book the daily NWA / Delta / KLM flight from the U.S. to Kilimanjaro (via Amsterdam). It is the most convenient and efficient flight routing available and the non-stop segment from Amsterdam to Kilimanjaro qualifies for the Yellow Fever Vaccination Exemption. Vaccination recommendations to discuss with your doctor or travel clinic are as follows:
- Hepatitis A
- Yellow fever
- As needed, booster doses for tetanus-diphtheria and a one-time dose of polio vaccine
- Antimalarial drugs
- Broad-spectrum antibiotic (i.e. Cipro) - be sure to know if any of your antibiotics will cause hypersensitivity to the sun
- Diarrhea medicine, both over the counter (brand name Imodium) and prescription as per your doctor’s recommendations
Infant, children and pregnant women require special consideration – consult your doctor.
When you pack, make certain that you have all your medications in your carry-on luggage.
Below is a listing of healthy ‘To Do’s’:
- Wash hands often with soap and water
- Use hand wipes, waterless anti-bacterial gel frequently
- Drink plenty of bottled water
- Protect yourself from mosquito bites and from sun burns
- To prevent fungal and parasitic infections, keep feet clean and dry, and do not go barefoot
Stomach upsets are the most common traveler’s complaint. They range from mild discomfort to diarrhea. The vast majorities are harmless and quickly pass. Some digestive upset is probably inevitable for most people. Simple things like a change of water, food or climate can all cause a minor bout of diarrhea. When diarrhea occurs, there are basically two things you can do, stop it with drugs or let it run its course. The most common over the counter drug is Imodium. Your doctor may prescribe another drug for bacterial diarrhea. Some doctors argue that diarrhea is nature’s way of ridding the system of harmful poisons and therefore should not be stopped prematurely. You should consult your doctor on whether, and under what conditions you should take diarrhea medicine. Dehydration is the main danger with any diarrhea, as dehydration can occur quite quickly. Under all circumstances fluid replacement (at least equal to the volume being lost) is the most important thing to remember. Urine is the best guide to the adequacy of replacement – if you have small amounts of concentrated urine, you need to drink more. Drink plenty of water if you have diarrhea and stick to a bland diet as you recover.
Diabetics on Safari
Traveling with Type 1 and Type II diabetes is a common concern with many travelers. In general there is no reason why diabetics can't safely travel on safari! Here are a few travel tips to help ensure you have a successful safari experience.
Be sure to travel with a letter from your doctor stating which supplies you will be carrying (insulin, syringes, etc.) Having a copy of the actual prescription is a good idea too. Pack this, along with your prescription medication, in your carry-on luggage or keep it with your passport.
Bring hard candy or glucose tablets along in your carry-on luggage as well. Always carry some hard candy or glucose tablets with you on game drives, hot air ballooning, walking safaris or any other safari activities.
The meals you enjoy while on safari will probably be a lot like the food you are used to eating at home – salad, soup, chicken or beef or pork, fruit, etc. In fact, many people find it is easier to stay on a healthy diet while on safari then when they are at home! Eating in the restaurants at the lodges is fairly easy, as there are always lots of items to choose from. When you are out on safari during the day, some days you might bring a picnic lunch with you; be aware there are usually a lot of high-carb items like bread and fruit or fruit juice in the picnic boxes, but there are always other high-protein items too like hard boiled eggs and chicken. Just choose to eat the items that fit best within your diet regimen.
If you are insulin-dependent be sure to bring along more than one bottle of insulin. If you are on a pump, bring plenty of extra pump-supplies along with you including extra reservoirs and infusion sets (you can't buy them in Tanzania). Bring along some syringes as a back-up method to deliver your insulin in case your pump malfunctions. Always pack the insulin and back-up syringes in your carry-on. Bring along an extra battery for your pump. Don't forget your blood sugar testing meter and plenty of testing strips. Bring along an extra battery for your testing meter.
You'll want to protect your insulin from getting too warm in the African sun, but please be careful about the electric “cool boxes” inside some of the safari vehicles; they cannot be trusted for insulin storage because they sometimes drop below freezing. This is also true for some of the coolers and “refrigerators” (run on generator) used at the Private Luxury Camp. We recommend bringing along a Frio cooling packet to protect your insulin from getting too warm during the day. The Frio cooler is small, lightweight, and easy to use because it is activated by water and will keep your insulin cool for several hours. See the link below:
If you have any other questions or concerns don't hesitate to let your ADS travel consultant know. Once on safari you can just relax without stress because of all your careful pre-planning. Good luck, don't worry and have fun!
Drink plenty of bottled water while you are on safari and on the long international flight. Dehydration is one of the biggest causes of travel fatigue and jet lag. Most major airlines allow you to carry on your own fluids. You should not drink any other water (tap, etc.) other than bottled water. You should not even brush your teeth with water from the tap. There is unlimited bottled water stocked in your private vehicle for your consumption and there are usually several free bottles of water in your room at each lodge and camp. Additionally, bottled water is available at all the lodges and camps for purchase. Please note that ice cubes and fruits and vegetables at all of our recommended lodges and camps are prepared using purified water and are safe for consumption.
Traveling with CPAP Machine
Guests bringing CPAP Breathing Machines and/or Portable Oxygen Concentrators devices on safari MUST bring a rechargeable battery pack that is universal voltage (120V - 240V) as most lodges and camps do NOT operate 24-hour electricity. Instead, many properties turn off their generators in the late evening until just before dawn the following day. Given the frequent power outages in Tanzania, even those properties that do have full 24-hour electricity may not be able to have their power running overnight.
Accordingly, a rechargeable battery pack equipped with a minimum run time of 8-hours is required for guests bringing CPAP breathing machines. Guests can then charge the CPAP battery during the day while out on safari activities to be used each overnight when the lodge or camp generators are turned off. Depending upon the level of necessity, guests may wish to bring two rechargeable batteries.
Please see below the link for an example of a CPAP rechargeable travel battery pack. Please make sure you have a compatible machine when selecting your specific battery pack. - cpap.com/productpage-advanced.php?PNum=2299# keyproductinformation