How to sell family travel to Botswana
Over the years Botswana has seen an increase in family and intergenerational travel, and as a result, the industry has adapted to cater for this development. Every family is different with different expectations, so here are some top tips for selling family tours to Botswana:
Offer age appropriate destinations:
Generally speaking, lodges that are accessed by light aircraft tend to be more exclusive, wild and remote, which goes hand in hand with a stricter minimum age. In these parts (e.g the Okavango Delta, Savuti , Moremi and the Kalahari) there is normally a minimum age of at least 6 years, sometimes older. Other parts of Botswana, such as Kasane and Maun, are much more accessible and safe which results in much more lenient age restrictions where even toddlers and babies are accepted.
Choose family packages:
More and more suppliers are offering especially put together family packages which offer a variety of value-adds. These include children’s gifts (such as activity books), especially trained guides, flexible meal times and child-friendly activities.
Check private vehicle requirements:
Most lodges in Botswana will insist on a private vehicle to be booked for families travelling with children under the age of 12 years, however, this is not always the case. Some lodges will automatically assign a private vehicle to a family of 4, while others don’t require a private vehicle to be booked at all. A 50% off child discount may seem much less appealing if the family has to fork out an extra USD 600 a day for a private game drive, and likewise, overly excitable children may not be warmly appreciated by a couple visiting Botswana on honeymoon, resulting in an awkward activity sharing experience. Check with on-the-ground experts for advice on the best value for money experience which is right for your clients.
Get the details on family rooms:
Find out from your supplier the exact room configuration and layout of the family rooms, if they are required for your booking. Each family room varies; is it two en-suite rooms connected with a walkway, or is it one huge room where the kids sleep at the foot of the parents’ bed on mattresses? Each family is different and has different needs so make sure to double check this information before confirming your quote.
Check age limits on activities:
A lodge may allow children from the age of 6 years upwards to stay there, but may not allow children under 12 to participate in any water based activities which could leave your clients with very limited safari opportunities. In these cases, it is imperative that the clients are well informed so that their expectations are well managed.