Scheduled vs Tailor-made Safaris and Tours

Scheduled vs Tailor-made Safaris and Tours



These two words ‘safari’ and ‘tour’ are often used together. For the purposes of understanding the differences between the two, we define them as:

What is a Safari? 

In Swahili, the word safari indicates “long journey”, previously used when hunting. These days a safari is where guests spend much time in wildlife areas observing, photographing and experiencing Africa’s wildlife up close and personally. i.e., you are out on game-drives most mornings and afternoons

What is a Tour?

Tours offer many exciting activities, with opportunities to observe wildlife, landscapes, culture etc.  For example, Cape Town to Victoria Falls.  Tours typically cover more ground and are not 100% focused on game-viewing, like a safari.


Scheduled safaris and tours have set departure dates with set pricing. They typically run with a minimum of between two and four guests, depending on the itinerary. Your guide travels with you for the duration of the safari or tour.

You have the advantage of enjoying the company of a group of like-minded people for the whole safari, sharing an adventure that is often the basis for lasting friendships. Accommodation type and transportation will vary depending on the style of the safari. In southern Africa and East Africa most scheduled safaris combine lodge and tented camps, but some are purely lodge-based.

Set departures are excellent for guests travelling on their own, but can can be booked by groups, such as families or friends.


A tailor-made (customised) safaris and tours is where we assist our guests in designing a safari or tour that focuses on a combination of their interests or desired destinations, or both. Typically, guests who are first-time travellers on an African safari are interested in seeing a wide sampling of the many different options possible. Those guests who are returning visitors may want to tailor their current African safari to places they have not previously seen, or alternatively, they may wish to return to a favorite destination once again.

Tailor-made road-based safaris and tours
In a tailor-made road-based safari you have your own vehicle and guide, generally for the duration of the trip.  This applies mostly to Tanzania and Namibia.

Tailor-made fly-in safaris and tours
This is where you fly from camp to camp, or lodge to lodge.  This is done because either (a) there is no road access to the lodge/camp or (b) to reduce large amounts of road travel.  Whilst your itinerary is tailor-made, when you are at your lodge or camp you join other guests for shared game drives and transfers.  If you prefer your own vehicle and guide, this can be arranged for an extra cost, so you have exclusive use of a guide and vehicle, or even your own aircraft if you choose!

There is great flexibility when designing a safari, as we can mix and match safaris. For instance, you might choose to take a scheduled safari, such as a 13-day Botswana Lodge and Mobile Safari in Botswana and add a week of customised travel in Kenya or Tanzania.