How Much to tip? Tipping on Kilimanjaro and Safari in Tanzania
Tips are a big part of the culture in Tanzania and unlike some countries where tipping might be optional, they are an expectation in Tanzania. Tips for each climber range between $200 and $300 depending on the route and are an extra cost that should be factored into your budget.
These amounts might seem large tip but keep in mind your tip is going to be divided among the entire climbing team that supports you on the mountain. Our climbing teams are quite large. For instance, a ten-person group climbing Kilimanjaro will be supported by a team of 40 consisting of 4 head guides, 3 assistant guides, 3 cooks, and 30 porters. The number of staff on the climb is something that is regulated by the Tanzanian National Park Service so every group going up will essentially have the same ratio of staff to climbers. Here is a simple table showing the number of staff vs. climbers on the 5 Day Marangu Climb.
We pay our support crew competitive salaries and you should keep in mind that a tip is something extra on top of this. We recommend the following minimum tips.
Suggested (Minimum) Tips For Each Climber by Route
|Umbwe (6 Day Climb)
|Crater Camp Climbs (Any Route)
Larger tips are always appreciated for a job well done. We suggest tipping in US dollars or the equivalent in Tanzanian Shillings. If tipping in US dollars please make sure that you have notes newer than 2006 that are in good condition. Older bills are too easy to counterfeit and are not accepted.
How should I give tips on Kilimanjaro?
We recommend that you give any tips at the hotel once the climb is over to your head guide. One of the office team will be at the hotel along with your head guide once you get back from the climb. We will provide you with an envelope for your tips when you arrive back to the hotel. As part of our efforts to ensure fair and transparent distribution of tips among our team we recommend writing your name and the amount of your tip on it before giving it to your head guide. Your guide will take all of the tips to the office and distribute them among the team there. Optionally, you are also welcome to announce the amount of the tip to the entire staff on the mountain at the end of the climb and thank them for their work. A safe box is available at the hotel and it’s not necessary to bring cash to the mountain.
What about tips for Safari?
Similar to your climb, tipping is a large part of the culture and practice with safari guides. Your guide’s experience and service are often some of the best parts of the safari and this is one way to show appreciation for their efforts. Here are the suggested guidelines to consider when planning your safari:
$25 per/person per day for safari guide, or $40 if the solo traveler
$15 per/person per day for cook – if applicable
Why do Katikati Tours & Safaris handle tips this way?
If you do some quick research on Tripadvisor you will note that many climbers have a bad experience with the tipping process. This happens as most tour operators in Tanzania just resell services and have little incentive to provide customers a good experience or ensure the ground team is taken care. Katikati safaris pay its staff fair wages and we employ our guides on a permanent basis. Everyone on our team knows that providing climbers with the best experience is the best way to build our company in the long term. Our tipping recommendations were developed with the support of the entire team.