Cancelation and Refund Policy
We understand that climbing Kilimanjaro and going on a Tanzania wildlife safari can be a once-in-a-lifetime adventure for many people. However, compared to other vacations, these activities can also require a significant investment, including airfare, tour costs, accommodation, and travel insurance, which makes them more expensive than most other popular vacation destinations.
This is why the cancelation and refund issues are important to many people - there is always the possibility that something may come up and the tour may need to be canceled or urgently postponed.
Why full refunds are not always possible?
Many often ask why a full refund is impossible most of the time. After all, the tour hasn’t happened yet, so what's the problem with just giving the money back? We’d love to do that for each and every customer whose travel plans have changed last minute and who is no longer able to join our thrilling Kilimanjaro or safari adventure. It is always hard for our team to say “no” to everyone we guided through the planning process and whose joy we expected to share here in Tanzania.
However, it is not just Altezza Travel as a tour operator that is behind your trip. There are many organizations whose contribution is essential for the tour to happen. We pay them long before you arrive in Tanzania. Some of them are:
Hotels, lodges, and local airlines
At the moment, Altezza Travel owns Brubru Lodge in Moshi and Aishi Machame Hotel in Hai next to Moshi (close to the Machame route). We are very accommodating for any reservations within a tour program made in these hotels and, in certain cases, may provide a 100% refund. Yet, most of our tour adventures feature a stay in partner lodges that are not under Altezza's direct control. They have their own cancelation terms, and if a trip is canceled, we can seldom get a full refund.
The same applies to the local airlines, which provide inland air flight services for our customers between Tanzania mainland, the islands, and some of the remote national parks.
Tanzania National Parks Authority
Mt Kilimanjaro or safari parks all require the tour companies to pay entry fees on behalf of the clients. To avoid unnecessary delays in the departures of our customers’ trips, we are doing that 2-3 days prior to the scheduled beginning of your tour. Once paid, these fees are non-refundable.
Local food and other suppliers
Each trip to Kilimanjaro, Meru, or other mountains requires fresh food supplies (most of which, such as meat, vegetables and fruit, are perishable), fuel, medication, bottled water, and other expendables, which are not produced or owned by Altezza. We buy and pay for them ahead of your trip.
Finally, we have a large staff working for us, many of whom worked hard to make your tour happen. A manager spent hours helping to plan the trip, reservation agents (all of who are based in Tanzania) emailed and called the hotels, Kilimanjaro expedition assistants checked and prepared the gear, and the supply teams went to the local farms to procure supplies, and so on.
Sustainable community development is one of the key pillars on which we built Altezza, and we can never compromise the job security of our Tanzanian teammates. The livelihoods of many families in the region depend on tourism, and we have always strived to make Altezza Travel a safe haven Here we mean our local teams. The founders and the senior management of the company are more flexible with their compensation, especially in times of economic distress. During the recent COVID-19 pandemic, we voluntarily waived our salaries to contribute to our relief fund. As a result, we paid all refunds to our customers, as well as managed to keep all local team members on the payroll. 75%. on board. One may expect much uncertainty in the job market of East Africa, but not at Altezza Travel.
Keeping all these expenses and the welfare of our team in mind, Altezza Travel has to be very careful with the refunds and follow our cancelation policies.
Nevertheless, we try to be flexible and helpful
Here at Altezza Travel, we do everything we can to make our trips risk-free for our customers. The terms outlined below are the standard ones, applicable to most situations. However, together with our partnered hotels and lodges, we always consider the particular details of each and every case. In some of the most extreme situations (death, serious illness, war or natural calamity in the departure country and alike), Altezza always tries to provide a 100% refund.
Also, when one informs us about a tour cancelation, we immediately contact our partners and inform them of the situation. Having worked with Altezza for many years, most of them are willing to reciprocate and waive cancelation penalties in extreme cases.
When a request for a refund is submitted, we evaluate it and make a decision within 72 hours or less.
The amount of refund that we will be able to provide you with depends on the date when we receive your cancelation request.
As of today, our cancelation and refund policy is as follows:
- 100 USD per person deposit is non-refundable regardless of the date of cancelation, though transferable to any other dates. This deposit is charged for confirming a classic Kilimanjaro climbing package that includes accommodation at either of our properties - Aishi Machame Hotel or Brubru Lodge.
To our premium Kilimanjaro packages and safari adventures of any category, the following cancelation and refund policy applies:
- 10% cancelation fee if canceled more than 90 days before the tour starts;
- 30% cancelation fee if canceled 60-89 days before the tour starts;
- 60% cancelation fee if canceled 30-59 days before the tour starts;
- 80% cancelation fee if canceled 8-29 days before the tour starts;
- No refund if canceled 0-7 days before the tour starts.
Please note: should the penalty fees charged by lodges and airlines exceed the percentages stated above, the non-refundable amount is to be increased accordingly. Bank commissions to be paid for the return of the funds to your account shall be deducted from the refund amount.
Instead of canceling the tour altogether, one should consider that Altezza allows How do we guarantee that? Your deposit payment with us is safeguarded by our reputation - we came to Africa in 2012 and have been building Altezza Travel since 2014. This company is our pride and joy. We strive to become the most successful, innovative, and the largest tour outfitter in Tanzania, and for that to happen each and every customer is essential. We believe that if we show flexibility and understanding in times of emergency, customers will definitely travel with us later. We believe that this approach is one of the reasons why we are the No.1 Kilimanjaro outfitter on TripAdvisor. on your deposit, and you will be able to use it for any trip with us in the future. However, keep in mind that our prices may be increased in the future (for example, if the park authorities decide to raise the park fees, or the costs of essential trip supplies grow), and you will have to pay the difference at the time of your trip.
Should you decide to reschedule your safari tour instead of canceling it altogether, the lodges and airlines under your booking are more likely to provide a no-penalty deferral or reduce the cancelation charges. If a no-penalty deferral is allowed, we will make every effort to reschedule your whole tour to new dates without changes. However, the decision about a no-penalty deferral is at the sole discretion of the lodges and airlines under the booking, as they are allowed to charge penalties regardless of the circumstances of the cancelation.
Also, keep in mind that canceling your safari tour on short notice in mid-December - mid-March, or early July - mid-October (“peak seasons”) is much more likely to entail a full cancelation penalty of the accommodation and/or local air travel costs. It does not mean that the whole price of the tour will be forfeited, but, as these costs make up a substantial part of the total trip cost, the charges can be as high as 50-80% of the trip cost. We will transfer the remainder to your balance.
Travel insurance is a good thing to have
For all possible contingencies, we highly recommend obtaining insurance with coverage sufficient for your tour cancelation. Should anything unforeseen occur, like illness or flight cancelation, you can claim financial losses from your insurance company. We, in our turn, will provide the necessary proof of all the expenses you incurred.