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Wilderness Safaris COVID-19 update

March 19, 2020 Tour Operator No Comments Email Email


As we all face the uncertainties and ramifications of what the coronavirus (COVID-19) means to our global family and travel businesses, we want to assure you that we have, and will continue to have, your best interests at heart, as well as the wellbeing of our guests and staff.

Our hearts go out to all those who have been affected by the virus, and we deeply sympathise with our travel partners and understand the pressure you are currently facing. It is during troubled times like these that we need to come together to make every booking count, and to ensure that we come up with creative solutions that work for your business, as well as ours.

We have therefore implemented a three-phased plan to assist you and our guests as best possible:

  1. Firstly our focus is on guests in camp or those about to travel;
  2. Secondly we will focus on our guests who are due to travel in the next 60 days;
  3. And lastly we will turn our attention to all guests travelling after June 2020.

We believe that our joint communication to our guests needs to be clear and compassionate. In this environment of fear and confusion, we ask you to stand with us as a voice of reason. I have outlined the broad terms of each phase below and reiterate that within this framework we remain committed to flexibility.

Phase 1 and 2

Guests in camp

We have sent correspondence to all guests in camp to advise them on global events and government restrictions on travel. If any guest would like to be rerouted back to their country of origin, we will assist and apply a credit for future travel for any days missed on their safari.

Phase 3

Due to the magnitude and complexity of our footprint we respectfully ask for your assistance to address all bookings in a structured manner based on travel dates. We are subsequently recommending the following timetable and actions:

Next 14 days – Address all guests travelling in April and May (Priority 1)

We will initially and immediately start rescheduling all travel for April and May 2020.

If your guests have a confirmed booking, you can promote and propose the following –

a.  To move your April/May bookings to travel between 1 October 2020 and April 2021, at no extra cost regardless of seasonality. Additionally we are happy to apply free upgrades to ANY Premier, or higher priced camp subject to availability. We recommend you do so as soon as possible to aid our planning processes and ensure you benefit from the upgrade option as this will be on a first come first served basis. Please note that this only applies to bookings that we have received a deposit for, and preference will be given to bookings that are fully paid up.

b.  Should your guest not be able to travel during this timeframe, then we will extend deferment further into 2021. Any seasonal or annual rate changes will be applicable at the new rates.

Between 1 to 14 April 2020 – Address all guests travelling from June onwards (Priority 2)

During the course of April (when we know a little more about the global outlook) we will be better positioned to make informed decisions on all travel from June onwards. We ask for your understanding and patience in standing by until early next month to review these accordingly.

As mentioned previously, I would like to reassure everyone that we will remain flexible on all bookings and table various options and incentives for rescheduling. Obviously with the fluid situation we will be better placed to offer realistic options closer to the time.

In this time of uncertainty, we have the opportunity to work together to come up with creative solutions; please let us know how we can assist you to ensure the best way forward.

If you have any further queries, please chat to your Journey Specialist.

Best regards,
Dave

Dave Bennett
Wilderness Safaris Managing Director



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