Air Charters In Africa

Page Updated: May 2020

Usually air charters in Africa are used to access remote hunting areas where road travel would take far too long or is just not possible. Occasionally hunters will use air charters, preferring the convenience, speed and comfort, even in countries where there is good road infrastructure, like South Africa.

Air Charter Costs

  • If an air charter is necessary for your hunt, it will be organised by the outfitter and either included in your overall hunt cost or itemised as an extra.
  • The cost usually is based on the size of the aircraft necessary to accommodate the number of people in the hunting group and the distance to be flown. The cost should be per aircraft not per passenger in the a hunting party. Raise this issue with your outfitter if your are quoted the air charter cost as per person.
  • There are minimal surcharges for departure tax, navigation, safety and landing fees. These are charged per passenger and usually added to the hunt costs to avoid the inconvenience of payment at the airport. If you are required to pay these charges at the airport, make sure you have cash.
  • In order to reduce air charter costs, the outfitter may often run a 'schedule' of flights at regular intervals to match the hunt lengths so an incoming hunter will tie in with an outgoing hunter. If your hunt dates don't fit this schedule or you decide to fly out early, it may be necessary to pay extra for a separate flight.

Air Charter Luggage Limitations

  • It is important to travel as light as possible and use soft-sided luggage when you are going to be using an air charter.
  • You can transfer your firearms into soft-sided gun cases for the charter flight. You can usually leave your big hard-sided gun case in storage at your hotel (if you are returning there) or at the air charter office.
  • You may also leave any hard-sided suitcases at the hotel or air charter office - transferring your clothes and hunting necessities into a soft bag.
  • If there are especially big or bulky items (fishing rods, special camera equipment, etc.) that you need to take on board, it is important to give the charter company advance notice.
  • It is also important that you inform your outfitter in advance, if your and/or others in your party, are above average weight and height. Despite everyone's best efforts, an extra large person may not fit the in the normally designated aircraft size, so alternative arrangements will have to be made.


About Air Charters In Africa

  • At larger airports, charter flights usually depart from their own small terminal building where their office and waiting areas are located.
  • When you arrive you are required to complete a form which is basically your name on the aircraft passenger list.
  • Generally charter flights go when the aircraft is ready and the booked passengers are ready. There may be delays if an aircraft has a mechanical fault and a replacement has to be brought into service, or if there is bad weather or a hold-up with the hunting camp supplies to arrive and be loaded.
  • In the bush, your hunt team will have driven to the airstrip early to check its condition. They will drive up and down checking there are no holes, rocks or branches and to shoo off any nearby animals. When your aircraft lands, you will be greeted and the staff will unload your luggage and camp stores into the hunting truck. The turn-round is pretty quick and everyone stays at the airstrip until the aircraft has taken off safely.
  • Fresh camp supplies are usually flown in with the hunter in the same aircraft. Don't be surprised to be sharing your flight with a stack of egg trays, fresh vegetables or some lobsters.
  • African air charters to and from the bush do not usually fly in the hours of darkness. Hunters whose international flight arrives late in the day, may need to stay overnight in the city before taking the charter flight the next morning.
  • If you are at all prone to travel sickness, it is recommended to take some pills to prevent this, prior to departure. It can get quite turbulent at times in African skies, particularly if the pilot has to fly at a low altitude.

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