Johan of African Timeout was established in the year 2000, Henry & Annekie established Catz Tours & Safaris in 1999 and both companies are registered tour operators for tourists traveling within South Africa. Our Hola partner based in Cape Town is Wayne Milne of Take 2 Tours giving the Hola Tourism Network the national spread it deserves. The businesses are owner managed, with 43 years of experience in the South African tourism industry between the three of us. Over the years the three of us have earned a good reputation for professionalism, client orientation, cost efficiency, integrity and value for money. We also specialise in small group tours, between 4 and 7 passengers, and each tour is planned around the guest’s needs and interests, and to ensure friendly, safe and personalised attention.
We are proud and loyal South Africans, based in the north of Johannesburg, with extensive traveling experience in SA. We also follow principles of being life-long learners; we continue our studies of South Africa and its people, to share with our guests. Our personal involvement and attention to detail ensures the success of the tours.
Guiding principles applied on the design of the tours:
South Africa is a large country, with a big diversity of geographical areas, landscapes, people and cultures, places of interest, wildlife, cities and town, and more. So the focus always is to capture this variety on offer, at the right time of the year to maximize the guest’s enjoyment of the trip. Tours are planned to ensure guests not only see, but also experience South Africa. This is achieved by having less traveling time, short distances per day, no traveling at night, avoiding traveling along the same route twice, many convenience and sightseeing stops, doing interesting excursions and activities, choosing the right places to stay and eat, and allowing for flexible itineraries.
Passengers will be picked up and dropped off from their homes on all tours. Departures are mostly over weekend to avoid peak hour congestion on the road. Tours are done mostly outside school holidays to avoid the crowds, and planned according to the best seasons to visit the area. Quality, quaint and charming accommodation is chosen for guests to experience true South African hospitality, with easy access to rooms, on-suite bathrooms, very friendly hosts, excellent meals and more.
Tours are conducted by registered tourist guides, with knowledge of the areas. Transportation is in clean and serviced vehicles, fully insured, and well-maintained. The seats are all individual and comfortable with safety belts for each passenger. The trailer used for luggage is also licensed and roadworthy.
We comply with the necessary legislation regarding insurance cover whist on tour with passengers. This insurance cover included passenger liability and public liability whilst on tour. Your own individual travel insurance is also recommended for any of the tours.
There is a minimum of 4, and maximum of 7 passengers per trip, (in most cases only 6 per trip), which enhances the enjoyment of the trip. Travelling in smaller groups creates more time to enjoy the sights on route, and not to rush because of time constraints caused by bigger groups.
The focus of the tour is on the journey and not the destination only. On some days the distances are long, and on some roads there are road works taking place, which adds to the traveling time. During the regular stops guests are encouraged to do some exercises to prevent travel fatigue.
For everyone’s safety, the maximum distance per day (and only on certain days), is 550 kilometers, and driven in daylight. On most days the distances are much less than that. Regular convenience stops are made on the route, as well as stops for coffee and lunches at scenic spots.
Departures are from the Johannesburg Metropolitan area. Alternative arrangements will be made for departures from outside the Johannesburg region, at a small additional fee. References are available from previous guests on these tours.
Terms and conditions and relevant useful information:
Pricing and departure dates: All tour prices have been agreed upon and fixed at the published rates. Once you have booked and paid the relevant deposits, these prices will be maintained. Only in the event of real dramatic increase in costs, will pricing be changed in consultation with persons inquiring about new reservations. Only Namibia and Vic Falls / Botswana are subject to currency fluctuations. Rovos train trip is priced on request as we are waiting special offers.
Deposits: Each reservation must be booked telephonic to check availability. Once it has been confirmed telephonic with Annekie, an invoice and reservation form will be forwarded to you. The reservation then requires an initial deposit of R2 500 per person to secure the seat on the trip. Once the deposit and completed reservation form has been received, a confirmation letter will be sent.
Please note if you have booked a trip which includes a flight, the deposit is used to book the flight ticket. If you then want to cancel the trip, there cannot be a refund on the cost of the flight ticket. Unfortunately flights cannot be cancelled any more.
Minimum numbers: All tours have been designed for a minimum of 4 persons on tour. Should it happen that the trip does not get the required minimum passengers a full refund will be given. On trips to National Parks the guests are limited to 5 persons to ensure everyone has a window seat.
The tour price includes: All land transportation costs and accommodation in carefully selected guesthouses, lodges, national park chalets, or hotels. Two full meals per day- breakfast and dinner- unless specified for trips with full board rate. Mid-morning coffee and tea at nice scenic picnic spots on route on some of the trips. All entrance and related fees in national parks, museums and attractions, guided tours. Any excursions that are not included in the price will be specified. Various trips also include flights and further airport transfers as well, and will be indicated. And some trips include all 3 meals, and will be indicated.
The tour price excludes: The cost of lunches, any beverages with meals, telephone calls, laundry, items of a personal nature, activities specified at additional costs, gratuities to lodge/hotel staff, and if relevant, gratuities to nature / specialist guides.
Wildcards: Persons with valid Wildcards need to inform Annekie when making the reservation. A refund of the entry fees will then be arranged, but only if Annekie is informed of their Wildcard status at the time of making the reservation.
Single Supplement: It is purely for the extra cost of a single room, and no extra costs are added. On certain trips, a limited amount of single rooms are available, due to constraints of the size of the guesthouses. On most trips there are always persons that are interested in sharing a room, and the two parties can contact one another to arrange this to bring the costs down. This is not compulsory, however, and single travelers are gladly accommodated.
Insurance cover: Normal insurance and medical cover for traveling passengers is recommended. Please ensure you have the correct insurance cover to cover protection against trip cancellation or interruption for unexpected medical reasons, medical cover for illness or injury whilst on tour, emergency medical evacuation benefits, protection against baggage loss, theft or damage, and 24-hour assistance anywhere on route.
Malaria: On certain trips we do travel to areas that are within a malaria risk areas. Appropriate prevention is advised, and you should consult with a doctor for advice.
Special conditions regarding mobility of guests:
All effort is made to ensure the places we visit and stay is easily access-able to all. On all tours there are inevitably areas that involve climbing of steps, walking to attractions, walking on uneven ground and surfaces, etc. All persons on tour must be able to do these activities un-assisted and without delaying their fellow passengers.
Should travelers not be able walk freely, climb steps or do any activities un-assisted, they would be required to have their own assistance (a person travelling with them) to ensure fellow travelers are not affected by this. The Hola Tourism Network, Annekie needs to be informed of any such conditions before the reservation is made.
Although no age limit applies to participation in the tours, it is important to declare any medical conditions on the reservation form which will be sent when the reservation is made. The Hola Tourism Network reserves the right to cancel the reservation if a person’s medical condition is too much of a risk to undertake any of the trips.
For everyone’s comfort and fairness, seats in the vehicle are rotated on a daily basis. No specific seat can be reserved in the vehicle due to a medical condition or handicap. Everyone needs to rotate seats.
The chosen accommodation always has on-suite bathroom facilities, but the choice of a bath or shower cannot always be specified or guaranteed. Should this be a problem, please inquire before a reservation is made.
Guests must be aware of the traveling distances covered per day, and that it may be longer on certain days due to continuous road works. Please feel free to inquire about the conditions, activities and access-ability on any of the trips.
We reserve the right to send a person home due to bad conduct or disrupting a tour at own cost and no refund.
Useful information to plan your trip:
Weather: Depending on the time of the year we travel, the weather will differ. Your host will gladly advise you with what relevant clothing to take on the trip. A suggestion is to always have some layered clothing, at least a warm jacket and raincoat and umbrella. With the weather patterns changing drastically over the past few years, The Hola Tourism Network cannot be held accountable for the weather experienced on trips.
Dress Code: The dress code on all trips is casual.
Luggage: Is limited to one suitcase per person which goes into the trailer, plus a small carry-on bag for inside the vehicle. For the smaller groups of 4 persons there will be no trailer, but the vehicle has enough luggage space for 4 persons.
What else to take: Binoculars, cameras, hat and sunscreen, comfortable walking shoes, and a keen sense of adventure. Insect repellent and malaria prophylactics are advised on certain trips.
Laundry: facilities and service is available at all places of stay.
Special interest and private tours- Many tours can be planned around special interest groups and activities, and we will gladly be willing to assist and plan the correct itinerary for it. Please feel free to contact us in this regards.
Reservations and deposit requirements for all trips:
Initial reservations need to be made telephonic or via email, to check and ensure availability. If there is, Annekie will then send a confirmation, invoice and the deposit requirements. A deposit of R2 500 per person traveling will secure the reservation.
Please ensure that your surname is used as the deposit reference on the right bottom corner of the bank deposit form. A copy of the deposit slip and the completed reservation form needs to be faxed to 011 782 5416.
On receipt of the deposit Annekie will confirm your seat on the trip in writing. The full balance needs to be paid at least two months before departure.
The banking details are:
Cancellation fees applicable:
• Notice of a cancellation by a client must be done in writing and is subject to the following penalties:
• More than 60 days prior to departure: 5% of total tour price.
• 59 to 45 days: 25% of total tour price.
• 44 to 30 days: 50% of total tour price.
• 29 to 15 days: 75% of total tour price.
• 14 days or less: 100% of total tour price.
Full terms and conditions are available on request.
We look forward to hear from you, and hope you will be traveling to some of these beautiful destinations and regions of South Africa with us.
With best regards.
Johan, Henry and Annekie
When phoning we may not immediately take the call, as we may be on tour. Please leave a message, or give us a missed call, and we will return the call thereafter.