Frequently Asked Questions

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This flight includes about 21 hours of travel, starting from your take-off in New York.

The advertised trip does include international travel time.

Arusha, Ngorongoro Crater, and Karatu and its surrounding areas,including the village of Qang`dend. Most of your time will be spent in Qang`dend.

Each program in BLiT will have leaders who are certified in First Aid. On Culture and the Crater, at least two staff will have the more advanced Wilderness First Responder certification.

BLiT maintains a minimum of 1 Program Leader for every 7 students. Additionally, each program maintains at least 2 primary program leaders, one male and one female.

BLiT uses sterilization techniques or purchases bottled water to ensure that all drinking water for students is potable and safe to drink. We ask students to bring reusable water bottles in order to reduce plastic usage.

Students are allowed to bring phones on their BLiT program, but must abide by our cell phone policy. Students will not be allowed to use their phones during group activities, (whether as a camera or as a means of communication) nor at any other time where it is disruptive to the group dynamic. If students are unable to abide by this policy, disciplinary action may be taken.

Tanzania uses United Kingdom-style plugs at 220-250 V / 50 Hz (the USA is 120 V / 60 Hz).

We are in Tanzania in their winter, so in the villages and cities, the weather will usually be sunny and warm during the day (high 70s F), and cool at night (50s F). It is the dry season, so we donot expect heavy rain.

On the first night of the trip, you will stay at one of the Guesthouse, a charming and comfortable guesthouse in Arusha. During the week of the program, you will sleep on safari mattresses in tents or in a common house or classroom donated by the village, within the community. The conditions will be rustic – you will have running water, showers, flushing toilets.

We have cooks that provide most of our meals and have worked with us for a number of years. They do a wonderful job of creating familiar dishes for the students, while also fixing the occasional local meal. Meals typically include soup, salad, main course and dessert. Special circumstances, such as being a vegetarian, can be accommodated.

Bathrooms are simple outhouses and pit toilets. Wet wipes are strongly recommended, and hand sanitizer is required.

You will not have access to internet or phone during this trip. On your last day, during brunch with the rest of the students on programs in Tanzania, you will have the option of visiting an internet café if you so choose.

You will have the chance to do laundry once guaranteed, and possibly twice, during this program. We pay some of the local women in the village to do our laundry, charged on a per-piece basis (laundry is not included in the program cost).

Generally speaking, there are usually a several more girls than boys, but it is difficult to say with each trip being different.

Parents and students who have not carefully read the itinerary tend to be surprised at how rugged/rustic the living conditions are. If you are excited to get off the beaten path, away from modern amenities, and are okay showering twice in two weeks, then this is a great program for you!

The drive Qang`dend from Arusha takes 4-5 hours, depending on the condition of the roads. There are also short drives on the safari day and on the cultural experience day with the Hadzabe tribe and Datoga.

Usually by private bus, for safari, you will travel in land rovers/safari vehicles.

Tanzania is considered the most stable country in East Africa and now sees over a million tourists every year! Safety tips for traveling here are much like traveling anywhere – be conscious of your belongings, keep money hidden, travel in groups, and do your research beforehand. All of which we do and teach you to do as a young traveler.

There are a couple of health issues to note specific to Tanzania. The country is considered endemic for malaria and dengue fever. Both are vector-borne illnesses spread by mosquitos; malaria has both prophylactics and antibiotics available for prevention and treatment, but there is no cure or vaccine for dengue. Those most at risk for serious complications from dengue are those who have contracted it before. These diseases present the greatest risk during the rainy season (March-May), and near large bodies of water or in low-lying areas, such as the more southern city of Dar Es Salaam. Risk in the inland north where we operate is much lower

Please consult with a travel doctor or your family physician for immunization and other medical recommendations, based on the area(s) where you will be traveling and on your own medical history. In addition to consulting with a medical professional, please visit the International SOS and Center for Disease Control websites for country specific information around immunizations and traveler’s health. Please let us know if you have specific questions.

For entry, we will note that yellow fever or other vaccinations are currently not required to enter Tanzania. The exception is if you have spent time in a yellow fever-endemic country (such as Kenya). You will want to review the countries to which you have previously traveled to determine if you will need to show proof of vaccination for entry.

AMREF Tanzania is one of the world’s leading providers of medical evacuation and travel services. All participants traveling with BLiT will have access to AMREF Tanzania benefits through BLiT membership.

As a member you will have access to AMREF Tanzania flying doctors extensive travel information database to help you make informed decisions prior to travel. Additionally, all travelers who travel outside their country of residence will have access to medical evacuation support during their program.

Qang`dend is only an hour from Karatu which has relatively modern healthcare facilities. While on safari or visiting the Hadzabe, that journey might take a little longer by a few hours depending on location.

In Arusha, there are good clinics with English-speaking staff within a ten-minute walk from the base house, and as the primary launching point for tourism in the region, there are a number of well-equipped hospitals in the city.

Special circumstances can be accommodated as long as we have ample warning.

There may be some mosquitos, but generally in those regions and at that time of the season the mosquito population is much lower. We do not carry bed nets, but we do encourage the use of bug spray if mosquitos appear.

Personal gifts, internet, phone calls, and snacks are not included. All other costs (accommodation, meals, transportation, and activities) are included in the program price.

$100 for visa (or $50 for non-USA citizens). Bills should be clean, unwrinkled, and dated 2006 or later.

$200-300 to buy snacks on the way to the village, and souvenirs on the last day. Sometimes studentsmight want to make donations to the school such as goats, school supplies, uniforms, etc., or supplemented our tips to the safari guides with additional tips of their own.

Note: students should only bring monetary donations, not items from home! Imported donations tend to crowd out local businesses and impair the local economy. A more sustainable practice is to bring money and use that to purchase goods (school supplies, etc.) from local suppliers.

Please refer to our Community Service Hour Awards webpage for more information on how service hours are awarded.

BLiT works with local community leaders and organizations to identify and prioritize the needs of each community. For the community in Qang`dend, you will join a long-term education enhancement program designed to both improve the physical quality of the education facilities, build or improve housing for teachers to leverage government resources and attract more teachers to the village, and enhance the students’ English education with hands-on teaching, tutoring, and 1-on-1 language exchange partners. You can also plan on learning some Swahili!

A reusable water bottle, sleeping bag, and headlamp with spare batteries are required.

Tanzanians in general dress modestly, and as polite visitors we will also dress relatively conservatively. While Arusha town can be a little more relaxed, it is important that we show respect at all times and particularly in Qang`dend village. The requirements are fairly straightforward:
Shorts – basketball-style only; no running or soccer-style shorts. Rule of thumb is that the bottom of the shorts should be approaching the kneecap for both boys and girls
Leggings or yoga pants – not to be worn by either boys or girls. If the pants are paired with a truly long T-shirt, then leggings will be acceptable.
Loose-fitting pants, capris, and long skirts – acceptable and preferred
Tops – shoulders must be covered on both boys and girls. No tank tops or spaghetti straps.
If you arrive and your garments are deemed unacceptable by your program leaders, you’ll have to purchase appropriate wear before service work starts in the village.