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Serengeti nightmare - SafariHub (Arusha location) committed fraud, altered our itinerary & disregarded our safety

Views: 69 Visited: Jul 2019 Reviewed: Jun 09, 2020

Safarihub (Arusha location) committed fraud, altered our itinerary, and disregarded our safety while on safari in Tanzania. We decided to utilize Wellworth camps and lodges throughout our trip to Tarangire, Ngorongoro Crater, Northern, and Central Serengeti. During our introduction meeting with Safarihub, they shared an altered itinerary (picture attached). We were scheduled to stay in an intimate camp in Tarangire, but they marked through the printed itinerary with an ink pen, and wrote the name of a large lodge in its place, which was 3 hours roundtrip from Tarangire. They suggested to substitute Tarangire for Lake Manyara to reduce driving time, but did not provide a refund for the camp in Tarangire, or paid park fees. Our itinerary also promised a Wellworth driver and well-maintained open-sided vehicle to view the migration. However, when we arrived in Northern Serengeti, we were met by a driver contracted by Wellworth. He was in a dilapidated vehicle without company identification, so we didn’t realize he was there for us. We shortly discovered 4 of the windows wouldn't open, the pop-up roof was missing a latch, and then the dash later fell off as we were traveling through the Serengeti. Then, there were multiple issues with vehicle and entry permits. After we arrived in Northern Serengeti, we spent hours sitting at the airport because they hadn’t paid for our permits. Although the driver tried to make our experience a pleasant one, at one point, he actually put our lives in physical danger when he abruptly decided to drive across a flooded bridge that crossed the Mara River. He started to cross without warning, while also trying to assure us the water would need to rise one more notch on the bridge post before there was a potential of being swept away. When we arrived at the Wellworth camp in Northern Serengeti, the camp manager said he had no idea we were promised a Wellworth driver and vehicle. He contacted Safarihub and spoke with Clara, who was very dishonest, so I had to forward our confirmed itinerary to him. Following multiple calls, emails, and text messages, she finally admitted the issue would not be resolved for several days. The morning of our transfer to Central Serengeti, we waited several hours for our permits to be paid. We finally arrived in Central Serengeti 8 hours later, minus a dashboard (it fell off during the transfer). After the Wellworth vehicle finally arrived (too late for the migration), we learned the proper vehicle permits had not been obtained by Wellworth. We were required to end game drives early the next 2 days, and we waited in the reception area until mid-day for our driver to return to camp our last day there. We did have a positive experience with our Safarihub driver, Ukkadi, during our trip to Ngorongoro. Unfortunately, our overall experience was rather terrible, having to constantly reach out to Safarihub during the trip. They didn’t confirm our itinerary, and in fact, they misstated what it said when questioned by Wellworth. In consideration of the thousands of dollars we spent on this experience, the time lost on game drives, the failure to provide the open vehicle and Wellworth driver for the Migration, the change in accommodations, the permit issues, etc., we are seeking a partial refund. The director at Safarihub finally returned my calls after multiple attempts to reach him. It was Wellworth who offered a refund of 9%, which is really unacceptable considering the plethora of issues. Wellworth has placed responsibility on Safarihub, and vice versa. The Safarihub director (Nav Hans) committed to getting the issue resolved in an email statement, but we have not heard from him in several months. We felt we had no choice but to reach out to ABTA, and they have now recommended arbitration or a formal court process because Safarihub did not respond within their timeline of 28 days. Safarihub advertises being a member of ABTA, but they can only make recommendations for a resolution. You will be responsible for legal costs if an issue arises.

Visited: Tanzania Tanzania
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