Traveller cheques no longer accepted in Namibia

Discussion in 'News & Announcements' started by AfricaHunting.com, Sep 30, 2013.

  1. AfricaHunting.com

    AfricaHunting.com FOUNDER AH Ambassador

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    We would herewith like to inform you about the following changes with regard to traveller's cheques, please be aware that this is valid for all banks.

    According to a notice received from Standard Chartered Bank, encashment of USD Denominated Cheques and Traveller's Cheques, will be terminated from the 15th of September 2013.

    USD Cash is not affected and neither are EURO Treveller's Cheques.



    Source: NAPHA (Namibia Professional Hunting Association)
  2. Blue Skies Hunting Adventures

    Blue Skies Hunting Adventures AH Enthusiast

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    Wow, that could have a huge impact on a lot of people's lives. Thanks for sharing.
  3. Cliffy

    Cliffy AH Elite

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    Hmmmm, that could pose a few problems. We have always used travelers checks all over the world to avoid the risk of cash. In addition, if we need to pay for a great safari we may need more than $10,000 USDs so we have to notify US Customs we are traveling with that much cash. Wire transfers ahead of time and then refunds will entail significant fees.
    Jerome, could you expand on your post and tell us why this change came about for USA only. Even guess if you have to. Has there been a large amount of fraud regarding these checks? Or is it more political?
    What would be the preferred way for you and other outfitters to receive payment of services for a safari now?
    6 to 10 animals taken on a hunt would entail a large amount of cash be carried instead of TCs.
    I'm presuming that Credit Cards remain unaffected?
  4. BigSteve57

    BigSteve57 GOLD SUPPORTER AH Veteran

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    Wow am I glad to see this discussed. We had a heck of a time with traveler's checks. Our bank doesn't issue them they said due to fraud and low demand. Haven't you heard? EVERYONE takes VISA or MasterCard nowadays. We also heard horror stories about other types of traveler's checks either not being accepted or being unable to be redeemed if you had checks left over.

    So, we wound up wiring our initial deposit, then more for what we estimated the trip would cost shortly before we left, taking thousands of dollars in cash in case we went over (we did) and then wiring a THIRD time with the small balance we owed when we got back home. Each wire transfer cost us $45.00 on our end and the guide $35.00 on the receiving end. We HATED travelling with that much cash!

    Our next hunt will be with a guide that will take VISA in one form or another. Perhaps the initial deposit could be cash or wire transfer.
  5. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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  6. Cliffy

    Cliffy AH Elite

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    I have sent an email to Standard Bank asking for details. I await a reply. I also await growing old :)
  7. G Skinner

    G Skinner AH Member

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    When we went in 2011 I had issues then with them not wanting to except a cashiers cheque .
    Glen
  8. Bobpuckett

    Bobpuckett GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    That is one of the reasons other then laziness of having to sign them all twice that I try to have my hunts paid in full before I even leave for the hunt, if I take anything extra there's Plastic and some outfitter will even take a Cashiers check from your bank but you need to check with them first.
  9. BigSteve57

    BigSteve57 GOLD SUPPORTER AH Veteran

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    How do you pay in full for a hunt before you leave when you have no idea how much game you will actually take? In our case we estimated the number of animals but we went way over.
  10. Bobpuckett

    Bobpuckett GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    I try to pre select the animals that I or my wife will take by what I don't have on my wall as well as what is affordable, like my hunt this past June My target animals were the Eland and Bushbuck to finish my Spiral Horn slam then after seeing my Wifes Steenbuck I just had to have one then there is Plastic. and as far as going over, we did as well we had planned of 8 but left 12 with the Taxidermist Thats where the Plastic comes in again. but I guess it really comes down to doing a package hunt for the animals I want and then plan for extras.:)
  11. Code4

    Code4 AH Enthusiast

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    I'm sure most operators will take Chq's in EUROs and the banks will cash US chqs into local currency.

    Time to think global peeps.
  12. Buff-Buster

    Buff-Buster GOLD SUPPORTER AH Elite

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    When I went to Zim in 2007, I used a good friend of mines booking service. Sporting International. I booked a buffalo/Sable/Plainsgame hunt. As usual, all day rate fees, license costs, MARS, pre-arranged charter flight, etc were paid in full prior to going. All "anticipated" trophy fees (those animals contracted for and those on my wish list) were put into an account of Sporting International prior to leaving. (I actually padded this amount knowing we would probably take more animals than planned) This left me with only having to carry whatever cash I needed for curio's, tipping, etc. At the end of the two week safari, everything was tallied up and a balance was agreed upon in Zim between myself and the PH. Quick, simple and painless. Upon our return Sporting International issued us a check for the remaining funds. If we would have "gone over" the deposited amount, we would have paid the balance after we returned. This was the best way to avoid carrying cash of any of our safaris. I was a LOT more relaxed on that trip knowing I didn't have to worry about the cash hidden in my backpack.
    If you know and trust your Safari Company/PH, I don't know why this wouldn't work by pre-depositing funds thru wire-transfers prior to leaving your home country. A signed invoice with the balanced owed or balance returned could be signed by both parties as a binding agreement.
  13. Stretch

    Stretch AH Fanatic

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    I hunted Botswana in August this year. I used booking agent He set up an escrow account stateside where I deposited funds to be held until the end of the hunt. On the last day, before I left camp, an invoice was presented to for review. The outfitter and I agreed all charges where correct. The outfitter then sent a copy (via e-mail) to booking agent and I, whereas booking agent then verified the charges and released the funds to the outfitter once I was back home. This was a most valuable service. No Travleres checks, no credit cards. booking agent handled it flawlewssly. The only cash I needed was for incidentals while traveling and tips for the PH and staff. This took all the stress and issues out of the equation.

    Here are some of the questions and answers that I asked the booking agent when I was booking the hunt:

    Would one normally pay the down payment from this fund? Is this the best way?
    This depends on what the Safari company wants to book your dates and secure your hunt. The "average" seems to be 50% but some take as little as $1,000 or so to hold dates.

    Does the money stay stateside until I release it to him? How does that work?
    It does with my company. Best to ask the agent directly how he handles it. Having it stateside is one of the main draws of using an agent. If something goes wrong, your money is on this side of the pond.

    I was thinking of building a reserve amount for anticipated trophy fees.
    Are these funds released to the outfitter prior to the hunt?

    They can be but are generally held until right before the hunt or after the conclusion and the total amount due is known.

    If extra funds in the account left-over (wishful thinking) are these funds returned to me?
    With me they are. It is your money so it belongs to you.

    What kind of bank fee's are associated with this type of transaction?
    Some outfitters charge the transfer fee (around $60) to transfer it to Africa. Others don't charge anything for the service and you are just "parking" your money into the trust account. It is a symbol of goodwill and commitment. It proves to the outfitter that you are serious and committed to coming over. He is then a lot more comfortable blocking off the dates and preparing for your safari.

    Is this the preferred way of handling payment to an outfitter?

    I think so because you still have control over the funds as it is in the United States and the agent is a phone call away.
    How I handle it might differ from him but I consider it the client's money up until the safari concludes.
    I don't transfer the funds until I get the "all clear" from the client that he is back stateside and the safari was what he paid for.
  14. Badger Matt

    Badger Matt AH Member

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    booking agent - thumbs up!

    I booked my hunt through a booking agent as well and was delighted with the service received. Payment mirrored what's described above and I carried a whole lot less cash. Too easy...and I'll contact him when I'm ready for my next hunt. I hope to see him in February in Vegas for the SCI convention.
  15. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    An agent is certainly one good method to use to arrange payment. As long as the agent trusted by your chosen outfitter.

    At the beginning of my Africa hunting career I felt like it added more to the list of people I'd have to check out.

    Now, I would be more comfortable using an agent. Certainly for more exotic locales.


    This whole business is built on trust.

    I managed to make and then maintain excellent relationships with every outfitter I have used.
    Knock on wood.
  16. Jaco Strauss

    Jaco Strauss SPONSOR AH Elite

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    Spot on Brickburn, I often send clients home and they either transfer funds into my and or RH's US accounts or into our foreign currency account in SA, or CC in SA

    This however changes a bit when hunting MOZ like we do, I usually request a slightly larger deposit, due to the fact that I need to arrange hunting cards, rifle imports and buy "tags" from Govt. Aslo do request guys to bring as much cash as possible, our problem with Cashiers and personal cheques is not the validity of the cheque itself but rather the time frame involved for the foreign based banks to release funds to our banks.

    We need to remember that even with a cashiers WAMU or BOA cheque that our banks can and will not release funds on behalf of another bank, it will be sent back to the US or Canada and turn around time can take up to 8 weeks in my experience. (this is my only issue with the cheque system cashier personal or traveller)

    It is not easy to move funds around internationally these days, that is so true, and I am not a big fan of pre paid safaris, as it makes clients uneasy... Especially new ones...

    Hence my Kansas city shuffle technique, having a hunter/client fly home and do a transfer post safari, that usually speeds up the trust factor on especially the second safari.. :)

    Touch wood we have not been burnt.

    My best always
  17. Cliffy

    Cliffy AH Elite

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    Jaco, can you explain why "Euro" travelers checks are treated different than USA ones?
    Is the long transfer time only associated with US funds?
  18. Jaco Strauss

    Jaco Strauss SPONSOR AH Elite

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    Cliffy any cheque I receive causes an issue at our banks with time delay, Euro or USD.

    Not sure what their reasoning in Nam is with regards to Euro,

    Just wanted to mention how tough it can be with cheques
    :)
    Personal cheques can take even longer than mentioned above... (My previous post)

    My best always
  19. Cliffy

    Cliffy AH Elite

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    Thanks Jaco.
    I'm going to revamp all my payment procedures from now on.
  20. thi9elsp

    thi9elsp GOLD SUPPORTER AH Member

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    My wife and I went on our first safari in 2011. We purchased Chifuti/Safari Classics donation at the DSC Convention. Using Safari Classic as the booking agent made everything easier for us. Any overages were provided as an invoice to us when we returned (trophy fees, dip/pack, shipping, etc.) and I immediately wired them the funds for payment to Chifuti.

    We brought along cash in money belts that looked like regular leather belts. This was sufficient cash for PH and Staff tips plus a little. The whole process worked out very well and took stress off us for our first safari. I'm in the planning stages for our next safari - probably 2015? Ann wants to see Victoria falls and I off course support her on that with a little 7 or 10 day hunt afterwards, right!?

    John

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