- Located In:
- 10-20 employees (Founded in 1997)
- Member Of:
- Eco Tourism Kenya
- Tour Types:
- Custom mid-range & luxury tours that can start every day
- Price Range:
- $100 to $450 ppper person per day (USD, excl. int'l flights)
for a custom tour
Your request will be sent directly to the operator
If preferred, you can contact the operator directly
Average User Rating
Email Clevanne | 20-35 years of age | Experience level: first safari
Our group was scammed out of $700 USD at the end of our 3 day stay at Masai Mara -AVOID THIS COMPANY
While I would have loved to leave a positive review after my 3 day stay at Masai Mara, I cannot and will not support or endorse a booking with this company after my experience being scammed at the end of the stay. The group of young women (a total of 5 of us) booked our 3 day tour with Masai Mara since Oct 2019, paying nearly $600 USD that included all lodging accommodations, game adventures, meals and travel to and from our hotel. Not included was the gracious tip we provided to our server, driver and individuals who aided with our luggage during the course of our stay. On the first evening of our stay (Wednesday 2/2/2020)we were told by our driver Dennis (not the owner of the company)t that there was an "issue" with processing our tickets that served as entrance to and from the safari. This issue in no way had anything to do with us of course because we had paid all fees months in advance but clearly this company operates at a deficit and did not have enough revenue to pay for entrance fees that should have been taken care of months before. The issue would now require that each of us pay $140 USD (a total of $700) that would be refunded back to us. Given that none of us had $140 USD in cash, we asked if it would be possible to pay by card to which they responded yes. From this moment it was clear that none of us had enough cash to pay for the park entrance fees that should have already been handled so I would assume if this was a priority they would be diligent about making sure they recieved the payment as soon as possible. The following day (Thursday 2/13/2020), which apparently so happened to be the last day we could pay by card, we never heard anything from Dennis or who we now know as the business owner, Noah Kuti, about this matter. Now we get to our final day (Friday 2/14/2020)...after breakfast we did a brief tour through the safari and began making our way to Naroibi since it was a 6 hour drive away. Roughly an hour later at our first stop (for souvenirs - this is included in the cost), Dennis brings up the payment matter to one of us who had remained in the vehicle during the stop. At this time he stresses that it cannot be paid by card anymore and that we would have to take out cash at an atm or else we would not be able to get back to Nairobi. This was absolutely unacceptable, disgusting, unprofessional and rude. To assume that because we were american we had $700 amongst the 5 us easily laying around to make up for the companys mistake still to this day completely irritates my core. To make a long story short, Dennis ends up bringing us to an atm where one of us is successfully able to withdraw the money after a handful of attempts. Dennis then wires the money to Noah who is able to process the entrance fees. During this time Dennis passes Noah the phones who tells us that he will meet us our hotel at 6:30pm that evening to give us back that full amount in addition to the bank fees we accrued (an additional 40 USD). Please note: We are scheduled to leave nairobi on a 7am flight the following morning and we would make it to our hotel a little before 5pm on that Friday. Now that the payment is made, Dennis drives us to our hotel and provides us with both his and Noahs contact information before leaving. 6:30pm arrives and nothing. At 7:10pm we decide to give Noah a call who tells us that he is at the bank and will be there by 8pm. A little after 8pm while we are eating dinner Noah calls and gives us an excuse about not being able to retrieve money from the bank location he was in. He asks for the account number that we withdrew the money from which we quickly denied as we are told by our banks here in the states to never provide that information. We have since tried to follow up with him (Noah) via email to which the two emails he have responded back have been short and to the effect of "we are working on your issue", despite us providing multiple options for him to send the money to us (cashapp, paypal, venmo etc.). It has now been over two weeks and we are still short over $740 as a group for a 3 day safari trip that we paid nearly $3,200 for (including tips). We have now taken this to our banks to report this company as spam and intend to take every single measure to ensure this never happens to anyone again! While we enjoyed seeing the animals this experience was absolutely despicable and a disgrace - my goal is to see that Wildebeest Safaris goes out of business so that company's with integrity can thrive.
Reply from Wildebeest SafarisPosted on Aug 13, 2020
Please confirm you received the refund to your card.
Email Ankit Garg | 35-50 years of age | Experience level: over 5 safaris
Very unprofessional... Don't plan with them if u want a peaceful trip...
Reply from Wildebeest SafarisPosted on Mar 28, 2023
Thank you for your Safari feedback to us. Please confirm what exactly happen in order for us to address the issue accordingly.
Email Vivi | 20-35 years of age | Experience level: first safari
Unpleasant experience and cheating happens
We had an UNPLEASANT experience in Wildebeest Safaris LTD. One of our tour guide, Peter, said he had the card issue for the payment, then he borrowed 300 USD dollars from us to pay the ticket fee for Masai mara National Park, which has been included in our travel fee. He guaranteed that he would return the money to us when we was back to Kenya 3 days later, but we have NOT gotten our money back until we finished our trip. During the trip, we waste a lot of time and stand under the sun to deal with this issue. After the trip, Wildebeest Safaris LTD said they will deal with the money issue and give us money back. BUT each time we asked for the money issue, they always have an EXCUSE, such as bank issue.
Wildebeest Safaris LTD does not regulate their staff properly, they even give all the money to the tour guide (including salary and traveling fee) before trips start. So in the worst condition, guides may throw all the clients away before the trips start and take all money away. SO for you guys want to travel in Kenya, you should take the consideration whether you want to take the RISK of using the service from Wildebeest Safaris LTD. And the guide can work for many companies, so they might take your money without any concern of losing job, like Peter in our case. Besides, communication between Wildebeest Safaris LTD and tour guides is very BAD. Two of our tour guides did not know our schedule at all.
Reply from Wildebeest SafarisPosted on Mar 27, 2023
Kindly confirm you received the refund via your PayPal account.
Email jd patel | 65+ years of age | Experience level: over 5 safaris
poorly organise and managed.
very poorly oganised, and managed.hotlel resevation asked for perticular lodge not provided.park fees not paid in advance also comunication was big problem. every where we went we have to call for reservation . also resevation done at wrong lodges. driver provided excellent custmer service. i would suggest before you go and paid deposit please make sure all services provided are confirmed and paid.
Reply from Wildebeest SafarisPosted on Mar 28, 2023
Dear Jd Patel,
Thank you for your feedback. As for park fees we usually pay on the spot upon arrival at the gate. We have since improved our communication skills between operations and our office and lodges are paid in good time to avoid last minute rush.
Email Ed | 35-50 years of age | Experience level: over 5 safaris
Everything was substandard after reading other people's reviews. We were mistreated + put in danger
We trawled reviews and websites looking at hundreds of operators, and settled on Wildebeest in the end because of pretty good reviews and also a willingness to book us in the resort that we wanted to go to. We did not use the one with 1600+ 5 star reviews.
We agreed on the price and all the inclusions beforehand, to include driver, 3 days 2 nights, all costs included for 2 adults 1 child 1 infant, for air-conditioning, pickup and drop off in Nairobi at specified times, a private 4wd tour, accommodation at our preferred resort, and also air ambulance evacuation cover. Communication was excellent.
We were picked up on time.
We never received confirmation of air insurance till we were nearly home on the last day – ensure you receive your policy numbers before you leave on safari to ensure you are covered while you are far from medical facilities!
The vehicle was fitted with a fridge, 2way radio and power points. We were unable to attach our baby seat to the car properly as it did not have the required anchor points for a baby seat- so we had to improvise and use the headrest as our anchor.
It wasn’t till we hit the dirt roads a couple of hours later where we noticed things going wrong. We had a tyre puncture in the searing midday heat. I was left in the car with a screaming 6 week old baby. There was no air-conditioning as promised AND despite their website also stating that “ALL vehicles are fitted with air-conditioning.
Driving on, our car was filled with thick dust – there was a hole in the floor allowing dust in. We resorted to wetting some baby clothes with our drinking water and blocking up the hole so we didn’t choke to death. The baby carseat I covered with a wet towel to try to trap the dust. My son was beside himself screaming with dust inhalation and heat. Then the ride got violently bumpy… in fact so bumpy I had to take him out of his car seat and hold him mid-air for suspension. I was afraid he would get brain damage with the violence of the car. My daughter was telling the driver he was going too fast, she was also being thrown around like a sack of potatos. Other Wildebeest and safari cars were flying past us without issue. So here I am holding my baby in a wet wrap over his face mid air for hours in midday heat… I started to message the company owner saying this was dangerous and I wanted the car changed. He didn’t bother to reply to me.
Outside the Masai Mara we were asked to change into another Wildebeest vehicle at the entry, and our car was taken to the mechanic. It turns out the suspension was broken.
The new 4wd was coasting along no issues with dust or bumpiness, so we knew we had been given a lemon of a 4wd.
My review of the resort is on its own post.
At the resort our driver didn’t engage with us much, sit with us or explain what the plan was, we were just left hanging. In saying that, he was polite and never rude to us, but lacked communication skills with us. I was watching Dennis, another Wildebeest guide, who ate, laughed and talked to his clients… and enroute was actively chatting, informing and having a great time himself.
The next day, the driver had lost his keys, so we were put into a van instead, having to get into our 4wd through dodgy unlocked windows to get our things out of the 4wd. Then someone told him they found his keys so we drove back to the “fixed” 4wd. We noticed more flaws with the truck – the 2way radio was never on, it didn’t even have a mouthpiece to speak through – so I guess we missed out on all the game sighting calls and were in danger should we have needed help in an emergency while out on safari. The drivers door was jammed so he had to exit through the window! The fridge and electrics just turned on and off with the bumpy roads… flickered and rarely even worked. Some of the seatbelts did not work, windows were jammed, the car was generally in very poor repair.
We did see all the park animals - except Rhino, which are too rare. The following day, we were meant to do a morning game drive, stop at NON TOURISTY souvenir shops (not the safari preferred ones where they get kickbacks and charge customers ridiculous prices). Our game drive was a hot footed exit out of the park, the driver didn’t speak, nor slow down, nor look for any animals. By this stage I was so furious with the company, I just wanted to get home. The owner never replied to my SMS or emails alerting him to the danger to my family and requesting a replacement vehicle. We had no other way to get home other than the same vehicle back. We stopped at one pathetically expensive tourist stop – you know with the special “guide waiting room” where they can chat, have drinks and wait for their customers to be ripped off blind and collect a commission. He knew we wanted to stop at either street sellers or the other numerous shacks set up on the road selling masaii wares, but he didn’t stop at those. Into Nairobi by 3pm, our driver did help us unpack and then even apologised for the terrible vehicle – again an admission from the company.
In ADDITION and the worst of it all – there is a pop top on the roof of the 4wd. One support strut had rusted through and I had noticed it was cable-tied down to stop it rattling – rather than being fixed. While driving home the 2nd strut failed and the roof crashed down. Had my daughter been standing at the time she would undoubtedly been killed. For an adult we would have suffered severe injury to the head.
I followed up with Noah the owner – he told me that the vehicle had come down from the north of Kenya and he had noticed that it was in very poor repair. Rather than talk to us and reschedule/give us the option, he just allocated it to us knowing we had a newborn and a toddler with us and required safety and air conditioning. I had even mentioned a reviewer before me mentioned an old vehicle and in poor repair, and had asked for assurance that this was not going to happen to us! At the end I requested a rebate of $250usd which was roughly the cost of a proper vehicle, which we FINALLY got after harassing them for months. Despite having kids, the owner doesn’t seem to have any insight into the grave situation they placed us in, nor care about his company reputation. I have read all the reviews, and know someone who has used them multiple times and likes them. From what I saw of other vehicles and Dennis, the company does have the potential to stand up to what other reviewers say, but we just drew the short straw and were really mistreated and put in danger.
Reply from Wildebeest SafarisPosted on Mar 28, 2023
Thank you for you review. We took steps on matters regarding the old vehicle and we disposed them replacing with newer cars.
As for the Driver, we noticed we had similar problems with him and we got him replaced with more experienced and charming driver/guide.
Also, please confirm you received refund of USD.250 via your paypal account.
Email LoveTheAnimals | 35-50 years of age | Experience level: 2-5 safaris
Based in Nairobi - so operates well within Kenya. SOL If you are planning to use them outside.
Where do I start? Here you go!
1. A/C did not work on any of the vehicles outside Kenya. Driver had windows lowered and with the muddy roads, there was dust everywhere.
2. One of the drivers (Charles) stole one of our smartphones and lied to us when we asked about it. Later we found that there was a social media account attempted to be opened under his name with this number.
3. We made the mistake of adding an unplanned point (Victoria Falls from the Zimbabwean side) to the trip. They not only charged us exorbitantly, but also charged us for services not rendered, and refuse refund the excess charge.
Reply from Wildebeest SafarisPosted on Feb 6, 2018
Thank you for your feedback.
We understand your concern regarding A/C not working in Zimbabwe. I have spoken to our ground handler to work on this matter and revert back soonest possible as we had instructed them A/C is a must.
Regarding the phone, my counterpart in Zambia was able to track it and found it. Until now our Ground handler has the phone. He has failed to send it because of the new regulations with electronic devices with the courier companies. I had mentioned to you earlier sometimes last year.
As for the unplanned additional activity we usually recommend guests to book with our office to avoid such scenarios. Our ground handler had asked if all of you have Visas for Zimbabwe and the answer was affirmative. Money was paid to the company handling the same. Two pax were declined entry because they had no Visas. My counterpart tried to get a refund from the Zimbabwean tour operator who declined because it was less than 24 hours cancellation policy.
Email Allison | 50-65 years of age | Experience level: 2-5 safaris
Very disappointing safari company
This was a very disappointing safari due to Noah and our guide. Noah added fees once we arrived in Kenya and charged us multiple times for pick up from the airport. He also did not give the guide information about the length of the safari drives we had paid for or the entire last day of our safari. While the guide was friendly, he did not point out many animals and was not able to show us where we were on maps of the Mara or point out any landmarks that are easily found on a google search. He said he had been a guide for 5 years and worked at a lodge in the Mara for over 10 years prior to becoming a guide. He would not take us to the Mara triangle or southen part of the Mara due to mud and the length of the drive but guides for other guests at our lodge were safely driving throughout the Mara. This safari did not live up to expectations Noah had promised. The guide put in very little effort. We paid admission to Enter Thompson Falls at the bottom and walk up a path to the falls. The guide took us to another location which appeared to be free. We have had wonderful safaris with other companies.
Reply from Wildebeest SafarisPosted on Sep 20, 2017
Thanks for your review and feedback. We are sorry that we did not make it clear earlier regarding card payments which usually attract 4% surcharge. Though I personally apologized and waived the fee but you didn't take it lightly. I truly apologize.
On the last day of the Safari, guide's plan was to take you for hot lunch first in a local restaurant as a surprise then proceed to Nairobi National Park but you didn't like the idea. So we had to drive you straight to Nairobi National Park.
Eustace was your Safari Guide and he has wide knowledge in Flora and Fauna at the Mara having worked and lived at this National Park. When you go through most of the reviews/feedback guest have mentioned Eustace most frequently as one of our best guides in our team.
Sometimes it'tends to be quite tricky finding the big five, it depends with a lot of factors as we do not have control over nature. But for sure I will address this matter with Eustace.
Email Zach | 20-35 years of age | Experience level: first safari
Too much driving
My wife and I did the 8 day safari with Wildebeest safaris and it was the worst vacation experience we have ever had. The itinerary is not very detailed and we had no clue we would spend sooo much time driving from park to park. 6hr drive, 9hr drive, day off, 11 hr drive, day off, 5 hr drive, 8 hr drive, and 7 he drive is what our 8 day safari consisted of. The guides were good and the accommodations were good, however this much driving completely ruined our experience and I would never do it again. There was two days we were supposed to do 2 game drives but we didn't do any since it took all day to get to destination.
Reply from Wildebeest SafarisPosted on Sep 19, 2017
Thank you for your review we truly appreciate. Prior to booking the entire package we usually send guests itinerary which usually indicates driving hours between parks. Kenya parks are far away from each other and it even shows on the maps we usually send to guests.
We are happy you enjoyed the services of our guides and accommodation favolities we recommended to you.
Business Development Manager
Email Kristin | 50-65 years of age | Experience level: 2-5 safaris
The bare minimum in both the company and the driver!!!!
Well emails were essentially good in the beginning we had conflicting prices attempting to recharge us for something we've already paid for. Having to walk two blocks at 11:30 p.m. with all our luggage in downtown Nairobi only to be left by the driver another 20 minutes to go get the car. On the way to the safari he drove very slowly to get to our destination on the way back he speeded 15 miles over. No communication between the operator and the driver didn't know our agenda argued about it with us didn't know about meal prep didn't know much nor did he point it out to us. It was horrible didn't have water had to remind him about it. He was more of a glorified cab driver than a guide. Choose someone else for Safari so you're not stressed out on your trip because of the owner and the driver.
Reply from Wildebeest SafarisPosted on Mar 28, 2023
Thank you for your feedback. We worked on our communication between the office and the guides on the field and also replaced this particular guide with more skilled driver/guide.
Email Ahmad | 20-35 years of age | Experience level: first safari
Look For Somewhere Else !!!!!!!!!
When my flight arrived at 10:30am driver wasn't there I waited 2 hours for him to arrive. And the driver wasn't my actual tour guide he is a tour guide for another group. His excuse for arriving late that his car was damaged, but in the end I found out he was lying and my actual tour guide made a deal with this other tour guide (Who will pick another group that I don't know) to go to the airport to pick me up because I was solo. And because of that he arrived late cause the other group's flight arrival is at 1:00pm. My trip plan is private tour which means driver must to pick me up alone without other group!!!!!!!!!!! And to top all that the car was in super bad condition. To sum up this company is a so unorganized, very old vehicles, don't care about customer satisfaction, and do whatever they want to do without even asking beforehand if I agree or not. Please avoid so that you will not end up with similar experience or even worse.
Reply from Wildebeest SafarisPosted on Mar 28, 2023
Thank you for your feedback. Ever since we have replaced old vehicles with new ones. Furthermore improved communication skills with clients between the office and driver/guide to avoid such scenarios.
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