Our most important concern in our business is the safety of our clients. Nothing is more important. Having the best tour possible is our promise and so we will not take any risks in fulfilling that objective. Therefore we want to be open with all our partners and talk to you about this Ebola Outbreak and how it affects your travels to Southern Africa.
With all the news worldwide regarding the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, we understand there are concerns and want to provide the most up to date information in order for you to make the right decision regarding your trip to the areas of South Africa, Namibia , Zambia, Zimbabwe, Botswana.
Most importantly, we have had NO cancellations from any of our clients that have booked with us over the last year. The main reason is that there have not been any confirmed cases of Ebola in these countries. Our clients travel mainly from the USA, Europe and the UK.
How Ebola Spreads
The CDC and the World Health Organization say it’s very unlikely that travellers, even those going to West Africa, could contract the disease, since they would have to come in direct contact with an infected and symptomatic person’s blood, organs or other bodily secretions.
To date, only six of Africa’s 53 countries have reported cases of Ebola. The World Health Organisation has confirmed that Ebola is stabilised and contained in Nigeria and Senegal while experts agree that the Democratic Republic of the Congo is tackling a strain of the virus that is unrelated to those experienced in other countries. Thus the epidemic is currently only prevalent in three nations: Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia. Presenting the outbreak as gripping West Africa is ill-advised as it categorises unaffected countries into the disaster. Worse still is grouping the whole of Africa into the emergency; pooling north, south and east Africa into a crisis that has not, and may never arrive.
In order to provide clarity on the scope of the virus, it is necessary to grasp the vastness of Africa. London, Madrid and Paris are closer to the epicentre of the Ebola outbreak than Nairobi, Arusha, Johannesburg and Cape Town. Africa is a continent large enough to contain India, Mexico, Peru, France, Spain, Papua New Guinea, Sweden, Japan, Germany, Norway, Italy, New Zealand, United Kingdom, Nepal, Bangladesh and Greece. As most of you know Africa is a very large continent. To provide some prospective, the distance between the country of Sierra Leone and Johannesburg, South Africa is 3,581 miles. In East Africa, Tanzania is 3,267 miles from Guinea. This is 25-30% further than the distance from Los Angeles to New York being 2776 miles .
The CDC provides updated information about the situation on their website:http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/outbreaks/guinea/index.html
We have also found the link below to a recent article which may be interesting to you: http://health.usnews.com/health-news/health-wellness/articles/2014/08/05/stressed-about-ebola-how-and-why-to-calm-down
At this time, trip cancellation insurance will likely not cover you because of an outbreak in a country that you are not visiting, that is, unless you purchase a policy that includes a cancel for any reason clause.
As a long time operator in Southern Africa and with our participants' safety in mind, we will continue to monitor our resources including the World Heath Department, CDC, the US State Department and the various health departments in our destinations. Should we receive any information that impacts any of your plans we will contact you and address the situation. And should you have further questions, we will be happy to speak with you.