What on earth do we mean by “Affordable African Safaris”? Elsewhere we’ve talked about how a safari is often more than you want to spend. And that's true. So on this page, we focus on lodges and areas which are on the affordable side of this spectrum.
PRO TIP: Make sure you budget considerably more for your nights on safari within a trip. You may want to economize in other ways - See Safari Pricing for ideas - in order to stay at good private game reserves.
Below are some of our more affordable African safaris and less expensive game lodges and camps.
These tend to be - though not exclusively - in South Africa or Namibia, Here the Rand ( & Namibian Dollar) is relatively weak versus the world currencies giving you better value for your money. Also our sample South Africa safaris usually include non-safari areas such as Cape Town or the Garden Route. This brings down the overall cost.
Plus you can easily opt to self-drive for part of the trip which brings down the cost still more.
What do you get at OUR affordable game lodges?
In this world of online travel sites, it’s easy to get confused as to why a game lodge is comparatively inexpensive. All game reserves are NOT created equal. So if a game lodge seems very reasonable, you need to ask why? When choosing an affordable African safari, we steer clear of the lesser game reserves. (They may say they are Big Five reserves but how many of each species do they really have? And are they free-roaming?)
You are looking for a proper safari and not a zoo experience.
Instead we focus on the affordable game lodges which are in good game-viewing areas. The accommodation will be simpler, the food not so elegant. Yes, the guiding may be a little less refined. But you will be on safari in the same terrain as much more expensive lodges, tracking the same wildlife.
Similarly some of the lesser known game reserves in remote areas offer a fantastic safari experience. That's why you need to talk to the safari experts! (End of small rant.)
As long as you have the correct expectations, these affordable lodges can be every bit as good as their pricier cousins.
Note: Below we highlight affordable game lodges for their area.
As always an excellent itinerary"Choices of lodges was perfect. Everything went extraordinarily smoothly. As always an excellent itinerary, great local agent/guide/driver and good trip notes. Good to hear from Milandi personally when a local problem caused a change in the itinerary during the trip. " Mr Tim Flesher, UK
Very helpful discussions"Very helpful discussions beforehand to give us lots of options. The personalised website was really good. The pre-holiday booklet was really useful as well. " Mrs Rachel O'Connell, UK
I loved the trip!"I loved the trip. The accommodation was all lovely, i.e. comfortable, nicely located, some nice touches (e.g. treats at bed turn down), the managers were all helpful. The locations of each were also beautiful and convenient for what we wanted to do " Mrs Deb, USA
Africa Travel Specialist
Popular tours & safaris
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- Best Bang for Buck?Generally South Africa and Namibia
- Low Season PricesSouth Africa - May to July (sometimes), Southern Africa safari destinations - December to March, East Africa - April to May (but April not recommended)