Tips for budget Uganda Safari. 10 helpful tips for Creating Great Value

This article gives you tips for budget Uganda safari, so that you can visit the pearl of Africa – without breaking the bank or compromising on the experiences.

The biggest factor hindering many people from traveling and seeing the whole world is money. Travelling requires some money for one to be able to finance all the involved activities. Avid travellers have figured out a way of reducing how much they eventually pay by employing some tricks and hacks that save them money and sometimes add more thrill to the entire experience.

We present to you this list of 10 tips and tricks (hacks) so that you can also be able to save money on your Ugandan Safari – all without sacrificing any of the experiences that make your trip memorable. Hopefully, this will debunk the myth that African Safaris are for those who have great balances in their bank accounts. We are going to look at the opportunities you have as far as saving some money on your Ugandan safari (and lowering its cost in the process).

The article’s focus is on Safaris and trips to Uganda – since that is where we know and understand best, but it can still help you properly plan and enjoy an affordable tour or safari anywhere in Africa.

Tips for budget Uganda safari

We know that  these tips, you will be able to save money all without sacrificing out on having a great experience. And that kind of win-win situation is what we ultimately want you to get from this article. Let us get into the tips themselves and see how you can actually save money and have a budget Ugandan Safari.

Tips for budget Uganda Safari

1. Travel in a group.

Travel with friends or ask your operator to put you with a group.

If you and your friends or family have a shared interest in traveling for an African Safari, come with them. This brings about some discounts on things like transport and accommodation. If you can go ahead and share a room with your travel mates, you will be able to save some money.

If you can’t find friends or family to take the adventure with, you can consult the safari agent about joining another group and look at what options they have. This might require you to have a decently flexible schedule for your travel.

If you end up coming with friends or family, then those are new experiences that will build your bond into stronger relations.

When you join a group of other people, you will get to meet new people and experience phenomenal adventures with them. Win-win. You win by saving some money and also by experiencing wonderful things with other wonderful people.

2. Use packing lists

Proper use of packing lists, and carrying those items that you already have at home will save you money. Packing lists are another great opportunity for you to save a bit of money as you prepared for your trip.

Common Safari item essential items like sunglasses, long-sleeved shirts or sturdy shoes can cost a lot of money yet you have an opportunity to carry them with you. If you reuse much of what you already have, you end up spending less money(or even nothing, really). And that is an easy way to keep your safari budget in order.

mweya room with view

3. Choose affordable accommodation.

Consider mid range or budget accommodation for your stay. I say consider because accommodation can become very tricky. This will involve two important things. One is consulting with your Safari team about it such that you have all the details they can offer. Second is, doing your own ‘ask around’ from other people through internet reviews.

Why is this a trickier situation? Because we don’t believe that small savings on money are worth any period of you not being at your best. As Exclusive African Safaris, our initial suggestions are usually the lodges and hotels we have worked with before and have provided quality service to all our visitors.

You should feel free to talk to our team about this and work out the best possible option together.

4. Learn About Uganda

Learn a little bit about Uganda and what actually interests you. This tip saves you money by creating more value and enhancing your experience.

When you come to visit Uganda with us, we want you to experience as much of it as possible. On leaving, we want you to feel that Uganda is a place where you are always welcome.

Here is how learning about Uganda will lead to that. It will arouse your curiosity (in a good way that doesn’t kill a cat) and your safari experience will be like moving from a theory class to a hands-on practical. You will immerse your self into Uganda and be one with it. By enhancing your experience, you are getting more out of your money. Another double win.

nature walks

5. Low season Travel.

The low season is basically the period where visitors are few. The advantage of this is you can engage in your activities of choice at a more leisured pace.

The chance of a one on one (or at least a very small group) with the ranger/guide is a good bonus. By consulting with your safari expert, you might be able to enjoy discounts or discounted upgrades on accommodation. Plus, given the few guests, the lodge staff will focus their attention on serving you.

This is especially special if you are going for activities such as gorilla trekking, where during a low season, you might trek in a group of fewer than 4 people.


6. Local cash to move with.

As you learn more about Uganda (from point 4 above), you will already know that credit and debit cards aren’t a common thing here and are rarely used.

That is it is a good idea to exchange some money via a bank (your driver-guide helps show you the right places) before you set off and out of the major towns. This money will be helpful in the event that you want to buy some few items or offer tips to the various people that will be serving you.

Here is our full feature article to help you understand everything about carrying money on a Ugandan Safari and all the related questions.

7. Bargain

Bargain for a discount on local items or souvenirs you might want to buy. In Uganda, even things with sticker prices can be bargained upon for a discount. You only need to be brave enough to ask.

The Easiest way to do it is to make an offer below what is being asked and slowly raise your offer as the seller lowers. This will be an even better experience if you managed to learn some few words in the local language. If you are really apprehensive about the whole thing, ask your driver/guide to assist and do it along with you.

Uganda Safari

8. Safari car

At times your safari leads to a journey that will require a very specific car. In those situations, you will be informed. Other times, there might be options, ask about that and how either of the available options of cars can affect your cost.

As you communicate with the safari consultants, make sure to ask about these options. If the options are open, you might be able to save some extra money on the safari.

9. Health & diet

Communicate your health and dietary specific needs with the safari consultants. This is important as it could determine which lodges and hotels you stay in and the other related details.

Be sure to share this information with the safari planning team so that everything is prepared well beforehand. Your food should be right, just like everything else on your safari.

Apart from your food, you should carry any regular medication as advised by your doctor. This is to make sure that avoidable emergencies are kept at bay and you are able to enjoy your Safari experience without fear.

10. Use a local Tour Operator.

Use a local operator with a trusted reputation. By dealing with a local Safari operator, you automatically offset that middleman fee that comes with working through many entities.

Your local operator has to be someone with a trusted reputation, otherwise, they could play bad games and not offer what they promise. How do you ensure this? Check if they are registered and accredited by local tourism bodies.

You can also ask around, as well as try knowing them and what they stand for. Simply put, the bad characters will be snooped out if you look and probe hard enough.

Here is exclusive our guide to choosing a tour operator for your African Safari. The article will highlight some 8 important factors to consider as you try to choose a Safari tour operator.

It goes without saying that we would want you to choose us as your local tour operator in Uganda and Rwanda. We work by a set of values and strive to give our visitors the best experience.


We hope that this list of tips for budget Uganda safari offers you more insight into how you could save some money on your next safari adventure. Do feel free to talk to us about any assistance we might be able to provide and help you to plan your African Safari.

You can check out our safari packages, which are a list of our most popular itineraries – for some inspiration as to what you might want to see, do and experience when you visit Uganda.

If you found this article helpful, please share it with your friends on social media and help them find helpful information. Cheers and thank you for taking the time to be here.

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Exclusive African Safaris Ltd is a Uganda-based company with 15+ years of experience creating great holidays in Uganda and Rwanda.We know what it takes to meet and exceed your expectations.

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