Kilimanjaro Climbing FAQs
Many questions will arise throughout your Kilimanjaro climb and Safari planning. Our staff will address and provide all answers needed. Here are a few helpful answers to common questions:
What time of year should I climb Kili?
Kilimanjaro has been summited every day of the year. We have scheduled climbs every week, year round. If you have a particular event or day you would like to be standing on the summit, we will arrange that.
What is the best route for me?
Worldwide Safaris Tanzania Limited selects routes that are the most scenic, best for acclimatization and yield the greatest chance of success.
Why is there a difference in price with tour operators ?
You can overpay to climb Kili and you can under pay.
Cheap operators may sacrifice:
- Safety equipment
- Contract out your climb to unknown companies
- Non-certified guides with no medical training
- Neglect proper cooking preparations
- Exclude private sanitary facilities
- Poor group equipment, Poor or low quality food
- Select quick and crowded routes
the list can go on and on…. But don’t forget that “Cheap is expensive!”
Overpriced operators pay a hefty premium for top internet ad space, include unnecessary days on and off the mountain, they also spend much money training guides and crews, pay the crews satisfied salary for your success on the mountain
Kilimanjaro is our only peak and our only focus.
Observing any of the group camps on Kilimanjaro, one can quickly see and understand the variance between trekking companies. The quality of staff, food, equipment, sleeping pads, pre-climb preparation, guide to client ratios, safety equipment and emergency priorities are a few of the costs that determine your experience.
At Worldwide Safaris Tanzania Limited, our approach is NOT to provide you with a cheap experience, but rather to assist you in achieving your ultimate purpose of why you’ve chosen to take this adventure of a lifetime.
A Note on Summit Success: The Kilimanjaro National Park service requires each exiting climber to document several pieces of information including their trekking company and if summited. Year after year, the Park reports summit success at less than 50%. Overwhelmingly, these reports continue to indicate the cheapest operators yield the highest unsuccessful summit rates. Year after year, We do enjoy over 90% summit success rate.
How far will I trek each day?
Depending upon the selected route, you may trek an average of 4-8 hours per day with the summit day being the longest. Our 3D interactive map shows details on how far you trek and the elevation change each day.
What personal equipment and gear is needed for the climb and/or safari?
Worldwide Safaris Limited will provide you with a detailed Equipment List and the Pack list that ensures every detail and item is in order.
Can I rent personal gear?
Worldwide Safaris Limited rents anything from sleeping bags to warm jackets down to trekking poles and gaiters. If you currently don’t have items on the Equipment List and feel it would be better to rent, simply reserve these items and we’ll have them ready for you upon arrival.
What will I need to carry in my day pack?
The only items you will carry are the essentials you want while trekking that particular day. Our detailed Kilimanjaro Information Guide will provide gear and suggestions on optimizing your day pack.
What safety equipment will be available?
We do provide more safety equipment as oxygen, altitude bags, portable stretchers,pulse oximeters. Each guide is certified for the usage and handling of all our safety equipment.
What vaccinations or immunizations do I need before entering Tanzania?
While there are no current restrictions for non Africans entering Tanzania, you should however check with your local travel clinic for the latest recommendations. We highly recommend you are up to date with your Hepatitis A & B, Typhoid, and Tetanus.
For current Health information for Travels to Tanzania, visit the Center for Disease Control website.
How do I physically prepare for Kilimanjaro?
Details in Fitness Program based on your time before departure will be provided to you, the altitude you live, age, and fitness level. Also a comprehensive personal fitness program to ensure your condition prior to taking your first step on the mountain.
Should I use Altitude medication?
The majority of our clients have not been at high altitude before and do not know how their body will react. Diamox (generic name Acetazolamide) is a carbonic anhydrase inhibitor, which means it forces the kidneys to expel bicarbonate, thus re-acidifying the blood. The drug forces the kidneys to emit bicarbonate. By increasing the amount of bicarbonate removed to the urine, the blood becomes more acidic. Acidifying the blood stimulates ventilation, which increases the amount of oxygen in the blood and has shown to decrease the detrimental effects of altitude on the body.
This is a personal choice and has been known to assist clients with minimizing the effects of altitude.
This should ultimately be a decision between you and your physician.
What Languages are spoken?
Tanzania’s official languages are English and Swahili.
All our guides speak English, with some of our guides conversant in French, German, Italian, and Spanish.
Is the water safe to drink?
You should drink bottled water while in town and on your Safari. While on the mountain, our staff takes careful consideration to purify water each day and provide sufficient water for each client as much as they need. You will be supplied daily with bottled water during safari.
Do I need travelers insurance?
Travelers insurance is strongly recommended. We want you to bring home Kilimanjaro and Safari memories, but no matter how hard you try, there are some things you just can’t plan for. You are welcome to choose the best company policy for you. Many of our adventures have found Travel Guard as a perfect policy as it includes high altitude trekking (Kilimanjaro) in their Adventure Travel Protection Plan.
What are the Tanzanian Visa requirements to enter the country?
The Visa to enter Tanzania is $100 for US citizens and $50 for all others. These can be purchased upon arrival at Tanzania Airports or at the Kenya/Tanzania boarder. US Cash or Tanzanian Shilling ONLY.
What Currency is used in Tanzania; can I use Credit Cards?
The Tanzanian Shilling is the national currency. US Dollars are widely accepted throughout Moshi and Arusha and park entrances throughout the Safari. There are also many currency exchange locations and banks to facilitate currency trade throughout Moshi and Arusha.
Credit cards are only accepted at the airlines and Major hotels within Tanzania. Plan on traveling with sufficient cash and/or travelers checks.
What Electricity is used?
The local electricity supply is 220 volts 50 cycles AC, Type G and Type D outlets. You will need to supply your own international standard adapter if you plan to power and recharge your electronic devises.
What is the Menu?
We understand that sufficient caloric intake and purified water are essential to keep the body functioning properly high up on the mountain. Our menu is specific to the activities of that day, and day of trekking ahead. By incorporating the right balance of carbohydrates and proteins, we keep our clients in top health. Fresh food only is supplied in all our climbs.
We have vegetarian & vegan menus available and accommodate gluten free and do our best with other special dietary situations.
What’s included in the climbs?
Welcome Packet: including Detailed Itinerary, Invoice, Information Guide, Equipment List, Personalized Fitness Training program.
Personal trekking coordinator to assist throughout your preparation
Daily trip reports our office staff emails back home to interested friends and family
Transportation to and from your selected route
All personal and group tents
All Tanzanian National Park Fees
Government Climbing Taxes
All Meals while on Kilimanjaro and Safari
Sleeping pads except for budget / lightweight climbs
Private chemical toilets
All meals during the climb
Guides, Assistant Guides, Chefs and Porters
Hot drinks at every meal
Emergency rescue fees
Free wireless internet at the hotel
Personal Summit Certificate signed by the National Park
Can I climb with Special Needs?
Absolutely. We have led Special Olympians, paraplegics, visually impaired, amputees, and many other clients with special needs to the summit. Please contact us to discuss specific situations and for any questions you may have.
Can I be assisted with Air Travel?
Yes. We will recommend the best airlines and travel arrangements to provide you with the optimal value based upon your air travel preference. If flying to Nairobi is your preferred option, we have complete transpiration schedules to assist you from Nairobi right to us and back.
What Airport should I fly into?
The majority of those climbing Kilimanjaro and/or traveling on safari fly into Kilimanjaro International Airport (Airport Code: JRO). Some find it more economical flying to Nairobi, Kenya (Airport Code: NBO) and then taking the 6-8 hour shuttle transportation to Arusha or Moshi.
You can book our transfer in advance!
Additional Airport codes of interest: Zanzibar (ZNZ), Arusha (ARK), Dar es Salaam (DAR), Serengeti Airstrip/Airport (SEU)
Is Mt Kilimanjaro a technical climb?
No, in the sense that no prior climbing experience is needed. However, this should not lead to the notion that this is a simple hike. Our personal Fitness Program will prepare your body and mind for the daily trekking and rigors of the mountain.
How much should I tip the staff?
On Kilimanjaro and Safari tipping is an expected practice for the crew who assist you.
As a general rule $200 to $300 per person will adequately cover crew tips on the mountain.
For Safari, at least $15 per person per day is recommended.
Several factors can increase or decrease the per person amounts such as longer expedition will increase the overall amount as well as smaller groups typically will tip more as they will employ a larger number of crew per customer ratio than larger groups. If you prefer to tip each crew member individually here is a general rule for the total tip amount:
Approximate DAILY Rates TOTAL:
Lead Guide: $15
Assistant Guides: $10
At the end of your trek you may choose to either tip each crew member individually or give your entire tip to the lead guide who will in turn divide the tip accordingly to each crew member. Tips can be handed out on the final night or as you complete your journey on the final day. Do what you feel works best and don’t hesitate to ask your Guide what he may recommend.
How do I sign up?
You can confirm your booking via our secure Online Reservation form. We’ll send out your Welcome Package soon and you’ll be on your way!
What Safari is right for me?
We can customize your safari to accommodate your schedule. Our Safari’s typically range from day trips up to 15 days.
What vehicles are used?
Our vehicles are Land Rover and Land Cruisers which are serviced after each and every safari. All our vehicles have pop up canopy roofs with personal window seat viewing guaranteed for each client.
Can I extend my Safari?
Sure. We provide just a few popular itineraries that work well with a typical schedule. If you would like to discuss a longer Safari we would be happy to accommodate and review our additional Safari extension options.