Physical Distancing, It’s What We Do
For nature enthusiasts like you and me, travel to wild places is never far from our minds. While some of us may not be ready to pack up and go just yet, I’m pleased that we are already seeing many of our guests making plans for adventures later this year and throughout 2021.
We’re eager to get back out into the world’s most inspiring nature destinations. But we're also looking forward to resuming our support for the communities and conservation efforts that have suffered as a result of the lack of tourism in recent months.
Of course, the decision of when to start making plans for travel is a deeply personal one. I’d like to give you some reassurance around the steps we are taking to promote both health and confidence.
1) We’re known for the smallest groups… and they're getting smaller!
We are already known for having the smallest groups in the travel industry, which naturally limits the number of people you'll be in contact with. And now, we will be reducing the maximum number of travelers on many departures in order to enhance distancing between individuals.
2) Additional vehicles for more personal space
On many of our trips we will be adding vehicles and guides so we can operate with fewer guests in each safari truck, van or mini bus. While this may cost us a bit more, during this situation we believe that extra space in our vehicles will be an important addition to our safety protocol.
3) We specialize in remote destinations away from crowds
While many companies are just now thinking about avoiding crowded destinations, that's been our specialty since I started this company 35 years ago. At Nat Hab, we've always believed that the best adventures happen in remote places where wildlife is our nearest neighbor, and stars provide most of the light at night. Now, we are adjusting our itineraries to spend even more time in secluded locations with very few other travelers.
4) Enhanced cleanliness and sanitation
On each and every trip, we are implementing a best-practices protocol, which includes enhanced daily cleaning and sanitizing of rooms and vehicles and the use of face coverings and gloves during preparation of field lunches. Additionally, the use of face coverings will be required for all participants while traveling in vehicles and on internal flights and at all other times during the trip, both indoors and outdoors, when physical distancing is not possible. We will also be working with our local suppliers and restaurants to be sure they are adhering to the most up-to-date health and safety guidelines. We will be following the recommendations of the WHO, the CDC, the World Travel & Tourism Council and the UN World Tourism Organization as we develop our new policies.
5) Flexibility at mealtime
During mealtime, we will give guests increased space by providing either additional or extra-large tables. When possible, guests will also have the option to have their own separate tables, away from others.
6) Revised booking policies
We are revising our booking policies to provide reassurance that you can plan a future trip with us without worrying about uncertainty in the months to come. If you book a trip between May 1 and December 31, 2020, your deposit will be 100% refundable until your final payment date. For Make It Private bookings, your deposit will be 100% refundable until six months prior to departure. Different terms may apply for custom trips or extensions. In addition, to make things easier for our single travelers, if you request a roommate and we are unable to find a match, we will no longer charge a partial single supplement fee.
7) Make It Private
By selecting our “Make It Private” option our guests get the benefit of experiencing our carefully crafted, remote itineraries—many of which took years to develop!—while gaining the benefit and peace of mind of traveling only with their own select group of co-travelers. Through the end of 2020, deposits on Make It Private bookings are fully refundable until six months prior to departure.
8) Reduced single supplement fees
On many of our adventures we are reducing our single fees so guests can have their own room. Additionally, on all of our scheduled adventures, if you elect to have a roommate match and we cannot find a suitable roommate for you, you will not be charged any portion of the single fee. This holds true for all departures through Dec 31, 2021.
While we understand the mixed emotions you may feel about traveling again, we also know that in times like these, it's important to have adventure, exploration and the tonic of nature to look forward to. Let’s hope we will be back out there exploring the world together again soon.
I sincerely hope that you and your loved ones are healthy and safe.
Explorer, Founder, President