Health And Safety Tips For Visitors to Africa

You need to let us know when you book if there are any long term or chronic medical problems that you suffer from. When you are on tour you can not just assume that if you feel sick it will pass. Your overland crew are experienced in dealing with a variety of tropical diseases but are not doctors. If you are feeling ill then you must tell them immediately. The overland crew know the correct procedures to follow to get you to the nearest medical centre. If you are feeling sick when you arrive back in your home country then inform your local doctor and tell them where in Africa you have travelled.
Tummy Bugs

You could be visited by the ‘upset tummy’ bug at some stage during your overland tour. If food seems to go out as quickly as it goes in then make sure you drink plenty of liquids, use re-hydration salts and stay on dry food for a couple of days. It is very easy for that nasty bug to go around the whole group and hygiene plays a very important role. Always wash your hands after having gone to the toilet, wash your hands before touching any food and do not share water bottles.

General Safety Tips on your Overland Tour

If you are on a guided Africa Overland tour your chances of encountering problems are minimal. Tour operators make it their business to know the areas they travel in thus reducing risk to travellers. However, it is sensible to take normal precautions on your African safari, particularly when travelling through urban areas.

Travel Documents / Money

Always have a photocopy of your passport and any visas. Also, have a list of traveller’s cheque numbers and the purchase receipt. These copies should be packed separately from the originals. It is never a good idea to carry large amounts of cash and most urban centres (hotels, shops) accept debit and credit cards (Visa and Mastercard and any debit card with the Maestro or Cirrus logo are most common), and traveller’s cheques. You will usually need local cash for purchases at local markets – keep this in a travel wallet, or a zip pocket.


Never leave cameras and hand luggage unattended whether in a vehicle or even in a hotel foyer. Never pack valuables (including medication) in your check-in luggage.

Personal Safety

When travelling independently on your Africa overland tour, stay informed in terms of the local news. Ask at your hotel about any unsafe areas, and codes of dress and behaviour. Don’t openly carry valuables. If you must carry your passport and money keep them in a buttoned-down front pocket.

Game Viewing

Your guide will always do a safety talk with you whether your game viewing is to be done from a vehicle or on foot. Wildlife is potentially dangerous but as long as you adhere to what you guide tells you there is very little to worry about. At viewpoints, hides and camps, wildlife is more familiar with people and less intimidated by your presence. Never tease or corner wild animals – this may cause an unpredictable response and a potentially dangerous reaction. Never feed any animals, as this can cause them to lose their fear of humans.

Creepy Crawlies

Although Africa is known to be home to a number of potentially dangerous species – especially snakes, scorpions, spiders, and some nasty insects – very few visitors are adversely affected. Snakes tend to be shy and generally stay away from built-up areas. Lodges and camps often have insect (especially mosquito) proofing in their rooms and tents have built in protection. If you go on a walk, it is always a good idea to wear comfortable, enclosed walking shoes, socks, and long trousers – just as a precaution.

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