Africa is a massive and beautiful continent full of different types of sceneries, intriguing cultures, incredible wildlife, and lots to do and see. The different experiences you can get in different countries make visiting Africa something everyone should do at least once. If you are considering traveling to Africa, here are some tips to ensure everything goes smoothly before and during the trip.
Decide on and Research Your Destination
Africa is huge and has over 50 countries that are all very different. You can experience different cultures, cuisines, attractions, and more on the continent. The country you choose will also determine the types of adventures you can have. For example, some countries are known for their safaris, some for their sunny beaches, and some for their cultures. Once you have picked a country, you should look it up online to see the best things you can do and see once you arrive.
The type of preparation you make will depend on the type of trip you are going on. Some basics to carry regardless of the type of trip include wet wipes, sunscreen, a flashlight, bug spray, hiking boots, and refillable water bottles. You can also buy most of what you need at the local markets but do some research or hire a local guide to ensure you do not pay too much.
If you are going on a camping trip or a safari, you need to prepare differently. You will need vehicles, camping equipment and more, which will make traveling to your destination much easier and the trip more enjoyable.
Make Money Plans
While most major cities in Africa are safe, it is never a good idea to carry a lot of cash with you. It is best to bring your debit or credit card and have some local currency with you. Besides safety concerns, carrying cash is advised because many local shops and vendors do not accept credit or debit cards.
You should also alert your bank that you will be traveling. The reason for doing this is that they will likely freeze or cancel your cards when a transaction suddenly appears on the other side of the world. You do not want to be stuck in a foreign country without access to your bank account or money, whether in Africa or any other part of the world.
Plan for Jet Lag
The flight time to different African countries and cities depends on your departing location and destination. Flights from the United States to popular destinations like Nigeria, South Africa, and Kenya take 12 to 16 hours, while those from Australia take 24 to 30 hours. Jet lag will be a significant issue for these types of flights, so be prepared for it.
Consider How Flight Times Impact Your Holiday
Flight times will impact how much time you spend on your destination. Using the estimates above, traveling from Australia to Africa means you will spend about 2.5 days on the plane. If you only have a week to visit Africa, you will only have about four days to visit the places you want to and do the things you are interested in. You should therefore factor the flight time into your plans.
Plan a Visit in the Low Season
Most African countries, especially those around the equator, receive a lot of visitors when it is winter in the Northern Hemisphere. For this reason, visiting in November, December, and January is not a good idea as most places will be crowded. Instead, visit in the low season, typically the middle of the year, to avoid crowds and save money on flights and accommodation.
Africa provides experiences that other places on the earth do not provide. This is why it is on so many people’s bucket lists. Planning and researching are crucial to ensure a smooth and enjoyable trip.