With their head office in Uganda, AA Safaris and Tours are expert creators of thrilling African adventures for the most discerning of clients. Specialising in wildlife safaris, adventure holidays and luxury hotel and lodge stays across Uganda and Rwanda, some of the most tropical regions in East Africa, they bring the world to the jungle.
Founded in 2008 by Ms. Tanah Hadijah who has a bachelor’s degree in tourism and hospitality and Ms. Sydah Naigaga who has a degree and background in business management, AA Safaris has always had a custom-centric approach. Today, the company employs between 15-20 staff members, all of which are fully qualified, and as a team the philosophy of matching the client with their perfect experience has continued.
In addition to adventure travel through Uganda and Rwanda, AA Safaris and Tours also offer excursions, tours and holidays in other East African countries including Kenya, Burundi, Tanzania and the Seychelles via trusted agents and affiliate partners.
This cooperation is essential to succeed in a competitive industry but the key thing that separates AA Safaris and Tours from their competitors is their response time to enquiries. Sydah reveals that a key component to securing a client’s business is to be the first to strike up a conversation.
“We are very fast in responding to client enquiries,” she explains, “Generally our response time is around thirty minutes, and we consistently seek to improve that time, with an actual person responding and not an automated system.”
In a highly competitive industry, this personal approach has a significant influence on the booking decision of clients. For many, safaris are a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and a potential guest will inevitably choose to work with the company that A) is in the position to turn their dream into a reality and B) is enthusiastic and fast to respond.
The region where the countries of Uganda and Rwanda lie has two seasons: The rainy season between September and May and the dry season from June to August. Although “drier” season or “less wet” would be more accurate. On average there is 1400mm of rain per year resulting in a dense tropical climate and a diverse ecology.
According to Sydah, the best thing about the location is the weather, which she says beats everywhere else in the world. The average temperature is around 25 degrees Celsius and as it’s equatorial, this is consistent throughout the year with drops and increases depending on the season.
“Uganda is perfect for winter breaks to escape the cold,” she says.
Building a tight knit team of travel professionals, Sydah explains that the training begins on fieldwork, where each team member goes into the field to learn about the destinations. Following this first-hand experience, the additional skills of marketing and guiding are added and along with that comes communication skills, email and computer skills and time management. Furthermore, AA Safaris and Tours prefer to recruit locally, not only to support the local communities but also to provide an authenticity and make use of local know-how and passion.
Sydah reveals that a current travel trend is “bucket list holidays” where a client will book a twenty-five-day visit and spend five days in five different countries working off a check list of things they want to see and experience.
“It is then our job,” Sydah adds, “To make sure that while we are ticking things off the bucket-list that we don’t miss the things they’d regret not seeing. They always thank us in the end.”
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