Africa definitely was the last continent where I envisioned myself this summer but sometimes God acts in misterious ways. The trigger for me was a lady I met in Milan whose son lives in Dar es Salaam. She showed me some pictures which intrigued me enough to check the tickets Tanzania. All the rest is now saved on 5 sd cards.
After we booked the flights I immediately started checking the safaris. Tanzania has so many national parks that it is generally difficult to choose which one to do. In our case the choice was limited by the only two days I had considered to stay in Dar es Salaam before we flew to the islands.
The first park I checked was the most famous one – Serengeti. But I didn’t quite like the quotation I got – 1330 usd per person for 2 days/1 night without any transfer included. In a hindsight I can tell that for this price you can get 3 days/2 nights with all the flights and transfers from any hotel or tourist agency in Zanzibar (and probably from elsewhere).
Next thing I know is that after a short browsing I stumbled upon a website, called Mojhi, something like AirBnb for adventures. There, I was able to choose the details of my desired safari and then I was promissed by an automatic message that I will be contacted back. So I was, and in a very short time. I have to confess that I just wanted to have the quotation and didn’t intend booking a safari online (I see scams everywere). Since I didn’t respond they followed up asking if i need any further information. This actually made me reconsider my skepticism and we actually found a solution that perfectly worked for us – one day trip from Dar es Salaam to Mikumi. Pick up and drop off to our hotel with game drive and hot lunch for 290 usd per person.
The next step was to see how much would they want in advance in order to confirm the safari. Here they surprised me again asking for just 10%. They sent me the link and the payment was settled in less than a minute.
A few days before the departure I was wondering whether it was better to pay everything in advance by credit card so that we don’t need to carry cash with us. I browsed google again but I wasn’t able to find any information about Mojhi apart one article stating that it is an Indian start-up. This wasn’t enought to convince me of their reliability so cash it was!
I thought that our concerns were over here and that if no one showed up at most we would have lost 58 usd. To our surprise 5 minutes after we arrived in our hotel in Dar I was called by the receptionist who told me that someone came to visit me (I wondered if in that moment the sweetest one thought that I have an African lover :D).
It was Mr Alexander, whose tour agency works with Mojhi, came to collect the balance and show us the car and the driver. Of course we had some doubts whether we should hand him the money one day before the trip but we didn’t have many other options. As I said later that evening to the sweetest one, if this was a scam it was a very credible one.
PS. You can check what happened the next day here.