How To Plan An Affordable Safari In Botswana?

Botswana | 24 / 01/ 2023

By Falcon Safaris
Botswana Safari

Botswana hosts the largest land mammals on earth. From large herds of elephants at Chobe national park to proud lions at the vast grasslands of Savute- Botswana dominates the wealth of wildlife. It’s a place with raw and rich wilderness where animals outnumber people. So, Safari in Botswana is known for offering the best Safari experiences to tourists around the world.

Although a Safari in Botswana comparatively costs you more, traveling on a budget is quite possible. Let’s go through the blog to find some quick tips for managing a Botswana Safari Budget.

Why Find A Local Tour Guide After Reaching Botswana?

Tour guides are locals who have been staying in Botswana for a long. They have plenty of knowledge about the habitat. They can definitely help you explore the place better and they often charge less as compared to big travel agencies.

Factors Influencing Prices of Safari in Botswana

The costs involved in Travel In Botswana can vary depending on your traveling style. If you choose to stay in high-end lodges or take up private journeys, then the Botswana Safari Cost can be extremely high. But there are ways to keep the costs within limits and manage a Botswana Safari on a Budget.

So let’s discuss the main factors influencing the prices of Safari in Botswana:

  • The month/season of the year you choose to go on a Safari determines your Botswana Safari Budget.
  • Budget flight options to enter Botswana.
  • How do you get around Botswana?
  • The number of days you choose to stay in Botswana.
  • The cost of camps you stay in Botswana.
  • Whether you are traveling in a group or solo.

Budget travelers generally prefer going solo and staying in camps. This will definitely reduce the overall price of the trip. But going in a group has its own advantages. You will instantly make friends and enjoy your journey with like-minded people. Also, another added benefit is that you can always share your costs.

Which Month Is Best For Safari In Botswana?

  • June to September is the peak season in Botswana. It costs around $9000 to $10,000 per person for Travellers planning a week-long stay during peak season/dry season in a good premier camp.
  • During the off-peak season (September to December) for the same week-long stay, the costs per person were reduced to $5500 per person in a moderate camp.

Let’s take a look at approx. prices per night at moderate camps (private mobile camps) vs. premiere camps for budget travelers across all seasons.

Prices Per NightGreen Season (Dec-March)Shoulder Season (April, May, Oct, Nov)Peak Season (June-Sep)
Private Mobile Camps (Moderate)$550-$600$700-$775$825-$950
Premier Camps$650-$825$825-$1200$975-$1500

Hence, we recommend our travelers visit Botswana in April-May or October-November. This is the Best time to Visit Botswana for a once-in-a-lifetime experience at reasonable prices. Also, for Botswana Safari Budget journey in a low/ green season; is from December to March. Although the weather may not be that favorable, safari is available at reduced and affordable prices. The main attraction is the migratory birds and areas are packed with wild animals and their young ones during the Green Season.

What Are Budget Flight Options To Enter Botswana?

There are no direct flights between Botswana and most of the other countries. You need to stop over in Johannesburg, South Africa before landing at Gaborone, the capital of Botswana.

The prices of flights will vary according to the season and airline you choose to travel by. Obviously, the prices tend to increase in summer months as it coincides with holidays in the northern hemisphere and more tourists visit African Safaris.

If on a budget, the cheapest option we can suggest is to fly to Johannesburg and travel overland to Botswana. Travellers can save their money by booking car/4 × 4 rentals. The starting cost for car rentals for a package with basic insurance is $115.  Prices may increase if you book a safari vehicle/ campervan.

How To Get Around Botswana?

There are two means to get around Botswana- by road and by air.

Now, getting around by fly-in safari may not be a good option for tourists on a budget. They are expensive due to the high-end logistics involved.  They are used to access isolated private reserves.

So, instead of traveling by air, you can choose to go by road. Some inexpensive modes of transport via road offered to include the following:

  • Joining a tour:

The cheapest mode of transport to Travel in Botswana is to take a tour. The important thing about taking a tour is that you need not worry about anything other than planning your tour in advance.

All the details about driving, hiring cars, insurance, park fees, accommodations, activities, and food are taken care of in the BudgetBotswana Safari Packages.

You can check Botswana Safari Packages on our website.

  • Self-Drive:

If you are traveling in a group or are on a solo trip, then self-driving can be a great option for you. This is a really economical option for travelers coming in groups as they can share the costs of the car.

If you want to explore the rich wilderness of Botswana using this option, then we can recommend getting a 4×4 rental like a Toyota Land Cruiser or Toyota Hilux.

For self-driving in Botswana, you need to be above 25 and Hold an International Driver’s License. Also, remember about the GPS, fuel, and insurance costs while you rent a car.

  • Public Transport:

You can choose public transport to travel between the main towns in Botswana. But that’s not feasible as you can’t access remote places using the mini buses. So, you end up paying for the tours anyways. So, why not book them in the first place only?

How Many Days Do You Need In Botswana?

It’s needless to say but the length of stay directly impacts the cost you are going to pay. And yes! The more time you stay (with the same tour operator), the less you are paying on per night basis.

So, you can buy affordable Safari Packages for longer safaris (7 + nights) and travel Botswana Safari on A Budget. Otherwise, a 3 or 4-night safari tends to cost more.

Our budget Safari Packages start from $195 per person per night. We can arrange the best facilities on a budget to suit your requirements.

At Botswana, we would recommend minimum 7 days to explore the country’s different game-viewing regions like the Kalahari Desert, Okavango Delta, and Chobe National Park, the lush green lands of the Linyanti and dry pans of the Makgadikgadi.

Find Affordable Accommodations In Botswana

As always, comfortable accommodations generally do eat a major share of the budget while planning any trip. The more private the experience, the hefty the price you pay.

Campsites, lodges, and hotels are some of the Botswana Accommodations options available.

The lodges generally opt for luxurious accommodations. They are pricey as well as remote too. There are not many hostels for visitors around Botswana apart from major cities.

So, Budget tourists generally don’t mind camping. Camping costs around $ 20 per night. You can purchase groceries at local supermarkets.

Advantages Of Booking A Camp In Botswana

For traveling to Botswana on a budget, camping is a viable option. Your tour company will provide you with your camping equipment. You need to carry your own sleeping mats too. For mid-range camping trips, the tour company provides you with everything.

Its’ actually fun put up your own tents, and cook your own food on these kinds of camping budget tours. 

Other Areas To Cut The Cost

Now, lets’ look at some other options through which you can save money while planning Botswana Safari on a Budget.

  • Food & Drinks

Cooking for yourself will help you save more money. You can access cooking equipment at campsites/ hostels and bring groceries from local supermarkets and cook.

Also, you can buy beer and alcohol from local supermarkets to save money. Instead of buying bottled water everywhere, you can buy a filtered water bottle.

  • Activities

There are many activities including game drives, boat cruises, and plane rides. Honestly, there are too many options available. If you don’t organize it intelligently you can spend unnecessarily.

If you have rented a 4×4 vehicle, then you can explore national parks yourself and save yourself some money.

How Cheap You Can Travel In Botswana?

Given the number of factors that can influence the prices of a Safari in Botswana, it’s really difficult to estimate an exact cost. But, for the knowledge of our readers, we will try to summarize the average price of an affordable Safari in Botswana.

We can estimate minimum prices of $450 per person for a 10-day stay with a visit to the Okavango Delta, Savuti Marsh, and a Chobe Safari during peak seasons.

  • International flights
  • 4×4 rental with a tent on the roof.
  • Accommodation at the campsite.
  • Entry at parks for game viewing
  • Food

Prices can vary on the conditions affecting the Safari visit.

Some of the bare minimum costs for a budget safari visitor in Botswana are given below for our readers to get an idea:

  • Flights- $1050
  • Accommodation per day- $27
  • Transport per day-$65
  • Parks per day- $20
  • 10-day safari- $220 per person per day.

Note: There are the minimum prices per person who chooses to travel with the bare minimum necessities. The prices can vary with travel conditions.

All this information will definitely help you to plan an affordable Safari In Botswana. You can also stay in touch with our safari experts for more insights on planning and preparation.

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