"WHAT'S GOOD FOR THE GOOSE, IS IT NOT ALSO GOOD FOR THE GANDER...???"

Discussion in 'Introductions & Greets' started by PRO-DIP LIMPOPO, Dec 16, 2011.

  1. PRO-DIP LIMPOPO

    PRO-DIP LIMPOPO AH Member

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    Dear AH

    Hi, I'm Sandy. When I joined AH, I did not know I had to introduce myself and I deeply regret it. I went ahead and posted my "USEFUL TIPS TO ENSURE YOU GET WHAT YOU'VE PAID FOR", thinking I might actually help a few, first time Hunters... Wow, what a shock when I got bullied by a few guys that missed the point I was trying to make. I don't want to fight, and although I might get bullied again, I just have to make a few more suggestions to the First time Hunters as I can clearly see that there might be some sort of misunderstanding or misperception between the Hunters and Outfitters regarding the method of payment. Please remember the following:

    * Due to the bad economy worldwide, everybody is struggling, not just you...
    * Most Donations that you buy, was offered because the Outfitters "had to", not because they've "wanted to"...
    * To let you hunt, drive and live in Luxury, the Outfitters have to maintain their camps, vehicles, staff, FAMILY, advertising etc the WHOLE YEAR round to give you your ONE WEEK Trip of a lifetime...
    * If you know you don't have enough money with you to pay for the animals on your wishlist, don't shoot them OR discuss this openly with your Outfitter. Put the cards on the table before the hunt starts, because
    * If you know you're going to tell your Outfitter: "I'm sorry, I don't have enough cash with me, I will wire you when I get home.." please tell him BEFORE the hunt starts, and NOT AFTER 15 to 20 animals are already in the Saltroom...
    * If you're worried to carry too much cash with you, get Travellers Cheques or wire the money a few days before the hunt start, or make an arrangement with your bank BEFORE you leave the States to wait for your call to confirm the amount they should wire to SA while you are still in camp
    * Please note that most SA banks DON'T accept Personal Cheques any more from foreign clients, and that the Outfitter would not be able to bank it.

    IF ALL THE ABOVE IS TAKEN CARE OF, THE "DOMINO-EFFECT" WOULD NOT TAKE PLACE AND LESS OUTFITTERS WOULD HAVE TO TELL THEIR PH's, Trackers, Landlords, Taxidermies, Banks, Family that the money would be wired, it will come later.

    (This is specially not good for any back-to-back safari's in a busy season as the Outfitters, PH's or Taxidermists will need the money NOW to operate on the next hunt/shipment. You as the next hunter, might need the same concessions where the previous client has just shot a Giraffe, Tsessebe or Eland for example, but how will those landowners let you in if the previous hunt is not paid? Imagine what effect it might have on the next client that booked his 29" Nyala but am now not allowed to go in..? The Outffiter is starting to loose face with the Landlord, as well as his next client that had nothing to do with this issue... etc. etc.)

    Please think of these things when you plan your hunt and discuss the money issue openly with your Outfitter. I have seen many topics on AH, mostly enquiring or complaining about the Outfitters, PH's and Taxidermies, but if they have to keep up to a certain standard, shouldn't the Hunters do that as well? Times have changed, and everyone has to adapt to these changes, even the Hunters.

    "WHAT'S GOOD FOR THE GOOSE, IS IT NOT ALSO GOOD FOR THE GANDER...???"
     
  2. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    I hear what you are saying Sandy. The whole process of paying for the hunt is not a easy issue though, none of the banks or credit unions in my area of the woods would transfer money over the phone, heck they don't like to wire money period. I know because they second, I walk in the bank or credit union...they know me as the wire guy. Nobody wires money anymore.

    I just learned or over heard someone saying "Lori" on her handles things like that, and that makes me want to look into it the next time I go to Africa.

    Carrying cash through Africa...not on a high list of things I want to do.

    I would prefer to wire money ahead to the outfitter, for unexpected trophy fees...but my trust level is next to zero. Travels checks are a option...they are not cheap! Last time in Africa I wired money to my outfitter the second I got home!!! To his US bank account and it cost me a $15 transfer fee. But my word is my bond. And I pay my bills on time.
     
  3. gillettehunter

    gillettehunter AH Fanatic

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    My last trip to Africa was in May. We paid our bill using our credit cards. We knew ahead that was an option and had arranged with our credit card companies to do that. I liked that much better than taking cash and travelers checks. Best to make those type of arrangements ahead of time. Bruce
     
  4. RickB

    RickB AH Fanatic

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    In todays day and age, this is the way to go. I understand the costs of the outfitter having to process the card. But having to bring $10,000 in cash on a trip is not safe! You can do the travalers checks but that cost $$ as well. As a client using a credit card, you generally have a form of recourse if you use a credit card. The credit card company will generally back the purchaser if you have a problem. To me paying the outfitter after I have come home is not acceptable, unless the arrangement was made ahead of time. I feel credit cards are the safest and easiest way to go for eveyone.
     
  5. James.Grage

    James.Grage GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Sandy, long time no hear on here...welcome back?;)
    Very good topic...

    Most of the parties that I know that go on safari have a pre-paid balance before flying over sea's:).

    Enysse, Bruce & Rick B, have some good points, cash, wire of money, travelers checks & credit cards. We all do things differently.

    It is interesting that you bring up the money part as I have talked to some PH's who have been in your shoes. Here is an example of what one PH did. The daily rate was paid for for the 21 day safari with no trophy fees pre-paid. Day 1 the client shoots an impala for bait for a leopard. Day 2 the client shoots a zebra for lion bait. At the end of day 2 the PH has a discussion with the client on animal trophy fee payment (as this was a 21 day safari) and the client wants to shoot the full spectrum of game animals. The PH find out the client has no money with him and has not set up a payment schedule with the outfitter. The PH delivered the client into the nearest city to obtain funding before the safari continued. A loss of one hunting day for the client to secure funding. A second PH did basically the same however the client could not arrange payment and his safari was over and was left at a Motel to arrange his flight home.:(

    The Money part of the safari?
    While you are willing to take travelers checks other are not. It is always advisable to check before hand on how payment will be handled. Here are a couple of ideas... Have you thought about a pay-pail account to have payments made to you?... I have made payments to South Africa using Pay-Pail, very easy to do... A computer and internet service needs to be available for the party's to make the payments. Or have you thought about taking credit card's? know when I travel over sea's I call my CC provider letting them know what I will be using my card for and in what countries I will be possible using my card?

    My safari trips are planned out and a basic pool of money is in place and up front. PH services, trophies fees, air travel, tips, gifts, motel and meals. Dip & pack, shipping & taxidermist work are all in the total bill.

    The tangible areas are tips and trophies fees.
    Tips: An average amount is budget for (put together from talking to the outfitter and information from various web sites) and additional pool of money along to increase later if need be.

    Trophies fees: A priority list is in place prior to going and those moneys are in the outfitters account prior to leaving along with a splash fund for a few additional animals.

    Before a client puts 15 to 20 animals in the salt room the business end of the safari should have been covered. Translates into money received on hand and money to be collected. When you are upside down you should visit with your client about adding to the pool. On my last safari in September of 2011 I had my slush fund for trophies fees and I did take 3 additional animals than were initially were on my priority (shopping) list and we settled the account when I went over my pre-paid money's..

    What I see in your letter is that some clients shoot animals and do not have the money to pay for them. In the McDonald's restaurant when you order a meal you pay for it, if you want another meal you pay for it. They do not let you run up a hugh bill before saying something to the client.

    If you do not have a slush fund prior to hunting it should be pay as you go one animal at a time and when they are out of funds they are finished hunting. Take they them to the local schools or villages or maybe to the bank or airport to go home.
     
  6. Bobpuckett

    Bobpuckett GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Ok I have a question for prodip you stated that * Most Donations that you buy, was offered because the Outfitters "had to", not because they've "wanted to"... for what reason would an Outfitter "HAVE TO" give a donation is there a law or regulation that I never heard of?

    I agree the credit card is the way to go even if you have to pay a small fee to use it it beats losing all your money in travel and the fee would not be that much difference then paying for Travelers checks. The only thing I think you should have to carry cash for is tips.
     
  7. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    I would not care one bit, if the outfitters and taxidermist started a section: on hunters that didn't pay their trophy fees.

    You are right it screws the whole system up! There has to be a system that keeps things in check. The same logic explains why taxidermists want a firm down payment on a taxidermy or dip and ship order. Integrity is all we have...for the most part some days.
     
  8. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    As part of this community I would have no problem with attempting to help another member (industry or hunter) solve a problem or concern.
    Membership here is voluntary and spread far and wide around the world thus the only "hold" is reputation.

    If you have some tales please share them so we will all have an opportunity to learn.


    Sandy the Customers (Hunters) are individuals and Agents, Outfitters, PH's and Taxidermies, etc. are businesses.
    Completely different kettle of fish!

    In the hunting industry it is standard practice for thousands of dollars to be sent to someone you have never met before, repeatedly. Half way around the world where there is minimal potential for recovery, as you well know. In effect your money is gone when it leaves your hands. Hence, why word of mouth is so important.

    Nothing will stop your losses or mine from a failure in due diligence.

    The hunter and the businesses have to make proper arrangements before the credit (shooting, stuffing, shipping, transferring, etc.) or deposits start flowing for both parties sakes.


    I can not agree more James.


    Your warning and mine will not stop under funded parties from entering the business, not owning land or game animals, buildings etc. and hoping the cash flow will work out. It can not guarantee that a cheat will show up in hunting camouflage either.


    Overall a little more diligence might just reduce those "warning" threads and increase the "what a great time I had" threads.
     
  9. Frederik

    Frederik AH Enthusiast

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    Proper communication ahead of the hunt and a proper contract stating the payment procedures should solve a lot of these hassles ahead of time even before a deposit is sent. That way the client will know if he will be able to afford his wishlist or the hunt in itself.

    Both parties playing open cards from the start also helps.
     
  10. Ole Bally

    Ole Bally AH Enthusiast

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    I think he means at SCI, if you want a booth you are encouraged to 'donate' to grease the skids of your application a little!

    We used to bid / buy back the 'donation' at the show to resell it for proper value!
    The cost of doing business!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 19, 2011
  11. Bobpuckett

    Bobpuckett GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Thanks Ole Bally I have a little better picure now.

    And not meaning to be rued I forgot to welcome you back Pro-Dip, Welcome Back!
     
  12. Jaco Strauss

    Jaco Strauss AH Elite

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    Ole baly agree 100% SCI all about what they can get thats it agreed 100% I refer to it as a expensive bribe, and believe that we are hurting ourselves, as hunting companies with the amount of donations going around, if you where to pick up the auction list at SCI and do a quick count of donated hunts, then turn that into potential hunters, that would give you a very large amount of hunters that are lost of the so called floor!

    I would rather do donations in benefit of cancer or reach for a dream or support local conservation efforts than fill the already over flowing SCI coffers!:-(!

    On the payment side I have paypal set up and it works well (could be a good idea for other outfits) I love cc I have a mobile unit in my booth, for deposits whilst on show as well as a speedpoint in our office in town, it makes it so much easier.

    Payment options are a very important for our clients and should be sorted even before deposits are finalized, it common booking procedure from any outfitters side and should cause no confusion.



    Frederik 100% agreed contracts are the way to go, it should be the norm.

    My best always.
     
  13. safari gal

    safari gal SPONSOR AH Veteran

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    Hi Guys,

    Just to clarify that there is a "required" donation with application to SCI for booth space. This can be a specified cash amount per booth in addition to booth space cost or a donation of the equivalent value. The first year, you must make donation at 100% (nothing back to the donor to help recoup expenses). The second year, you can get a small percentage back in return. Also, if the donation sells below value and you have not met the dollar quota for your booth space/spaces then they can send you an invoice for the balance owed after convention.

    This information is available to the public and can be found on SCI's website under the Exhibitor section - all forms/rules are published online so it's no secret.

    The auction market is definitely flooded and it adversely reduces potential clients from purchasing a trip directly from the outfitters who have invested so much money, time and effort in being a part of the convention.

    A little insight from the exhibitor's point of view!
     
  14. Jaco Strauss

    Jaco Strauss AH Elite

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    Very true, apart from my membership fee, and to clarify, I am a member because our clients want to see this! They will not see one cent of my hard earned money! I operate above board and feel that DSC is by far a better show and floor to work on. It common knowledge that SCI poster companies have been caught multiple time on the wrong side of the law, in a confrontational meeting with Phasa a couple of years ago SCI ignored the request of Phasa to repremand/ban certain outfits.
    This was after these companies had been turned away by Phasa!!!'

    Anyone would like to guess SCI's reply to this request?

    I'll tell you they stated in as many words that SCI was nothing but a buisiness!!!........buisiness!!!!!! First for the hunter...... Blughhhhh!

    And yet when the so called ---- hit the fan they turn around and take the high ground, but this only happens after so many more of their members have been screwed in some way.....SIS!

    My best always.
     
  15. Ole Bally

    Ole Bally AH Enthusiast

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    Jaco, corruption didn't start in africa!! :)
    Whether they're right or wrong, SCI remains Americas biggest hunting show and if you wanna play, you gotta pay! If everything's done right, it is a fantastic medium to market yourself! But yes it is a business.... a very big one!
    Just buy your donation back and re sell it!
    Having said that, we much preferred a visit and referral system of getting new clients! Visit an old client at his home, ask him to invite all his hunting buddies around for a braai which you pay for and canvas for new clientele from there! More than 90% of our clients were referrals or returns.
    Did you know that the US was selling 14 Million deer tags a year in 1994? That's a potential client base of 14 million US clients for the safari industry!
     
  16. Jaco Strauss

    Jaco Strauss AH Elite

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    Ole Bally, correct, and for that exact reason I am a member not even shy to admit to that, I do only 3 shows and the rest is all networking with old clients, cocktail parties, power point presentation and so on, I just find the greed against my grain, but it can not be held against members, members should speak up though.
     
  17. CT Safaris

    CT Safaris AH Enthusiast

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    I understand how it could be more convenient for clients not to carry cash with them and rather wire money back to Africa after their return. But let's be serious folks SH*T happens and many things can go wrong between the time that someone steps onboard an aeroplane heading back home and the time he makes it to a bank to effect a wire transfer... Planes crash, cars crash and people get sick / lose their lives... Yes, no one wants to think along these lines but believe me it happens... I think the number of clients who come to Africa with the intention of shooting a bunch of animals and not paying for it afterwards (if any) are few and far between - it has not happened to me (thank goodness) although I have had a client leave for home with a PTP and due to circumstances beyond any of our control (he was killed in a car accident) he could not. Yet I remained responsible to landowners for some $10,000 in Trophy Fees - which I had to pay out of own pocket. Believe me as a young Outfitter trying to start a new business back in ?3 this was not a pleasant experience and a very expensive lesson at that.

    Remember - this was not a client who wanted to defraud me - it was a good client and he had every intention of making the payment - he simply couldn't and no matter what the contract between him and I stated it made no difference... he remained deceased and I remained out of pocket.

    Most - if not all - Outfitters have contracts signed with clients as this not only lays out the terms of agreement between both parties - it is also the law. But the fact is that a contract can never safeguard an Outfitter against financial losses under circumstances such as those described above.

    Sadly; some folks do not read their contracts before signing it...Some years ago (after the incident mentioned earlier) I hosted a group of 13 clients on a hunt and the hunting clients harvested average 5 animals each. Contracts had been signed with each one of them stating specifically that the balance of Daily Rates and Trophy Fees were payable on the last day of the safari in cash or travellers checks. When I handed out invoices on the last evening several of the clients (most of them in fact) told me that they did not have any cash on them and that they'd wire the funds after getting home... I can assure you - sending 13 clients back home who owes you tens of Thousands of $$$ with a PTP does nothing to ease your stress levels! Fortunately it turned out well as all made it home safe and honoured their promises did not do my ulcer any good during the waiting time though...

    I have to admit that I do not completely understand the difficulties some have alluded to as far as getting money to Africa is concerned or the difficulty understanding the risks on the Outfitter's part in terms of allowing a customer to return home with a PTP. As one poster stated you will not buy a meal at McDonalds and expect them to wait for payment... Or book an expensive cruise and tell the tour operator that you値l settle up after the trip... Why should this be different in the safari industry?

    Many of my clients have made arrangements with their banks before they came to Africa to expect a telephonic or email instruction to have funds wired on their last safari day without any problems. This is a possibility that works for both parties.

    PayPal is a payment option which I have used (and still use) for receiving funds. But regrettably this is not always the perfect solution. The problem is that whilst the services they offer are good it is essentially strictly an online service and should a problem arise when attempting to make the transfer (been there done that) there's no-one you can talk to telephonically to resolve the issue. PayPal also charges a fee to the receiving PayPal member for funds transferred (about 4% - even more if a credit card is used to fund the transaction).

    Credit cards could indeed be another option. BUT, South African credit card companies charge anything from 5 7.5% merchant commission. Considering the profit margin on trophies this is something most Outfitters who offer reasonably priced hunts cannot afford and this would normally have to be added to the invoice amount by the Outfitter. Folks; on a $10,000 hunt that is $750! You could have shot an extra animal or two for that money.

    I think the principle is that if a client has an agreement with an Outfitter to render certain services at specified fees it is the Outfitter's responsibility to render the services and the client's responsibility to pay for such services ideally directly after the hunt and before leaving camp? And there are ways of getting this accomplished.

    The point that Sandy was trying to get across was that one is put in a very difficult situation (as an Outfitter) if a client was made aware of payment requirements / terms upfront and in spite of this then surprises the Outfitter on the last day by telling him/her that he doesn't have money on him to pay for his hunt. I can relate to this from personal experience hence my opinion on the matter.
     
  18. Bobpuckett

    Bobpuckett GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Chris you've made some great point and I can understand how this would make it hard on an outfitter thats why I like to plan my hunts a year out this way I know what it is I want to hunt and have a package done for those animals everything is planned and paid up front this way there is no hardship for the outfitter or the hunter and the hunter either carry a little extra cash or use a credit card in the event that one animal shows that you can't live without rather than having to pay for lets say 9 or 10 animals at the end of the hunt.
     
  19. Jaco Strauss

    Jaco Strauss AH Elite

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    CT safaris agreed, situations do arise that are out of ones control. All we can do as you also correctly mentioned is to have our contracts in place and hope to do buisiness with people and fellow hunters as honest as we are.

    There is nothing else you can do, on the cc it is illeagal to add the comms to the total, I also use to do this and only was informed of this a couple of months ago, and strictly speaking if I am.... Like I am making this facility available I am responsible for my own bank costs, visa and master card take between 3,5 - 4 % comms Amex sucks and therefore i do no facilitate any amex payments they rock your world with almost 7% comms.

    It is pretty simple cc payment is a service that you offer like many of the other services you have, even when my client buys travelers cheques, he's going to have to pay a comm.

    I think potential clients should be aware of the methods of payment that I as an outfitter offer and thats the best you as an outfitter can do, if a hunter prefers not to do checks, cash or cc and prefers paypal or a transfer it can be done in my office on the day they leave.

    We as outfitters should always remember we are in the service industry, but we also do need to get paid for services rendered somewhere along the line, and thats the way it is, this is what I offer so pick one.

    Its like walking onto a car lot and buying a vehicle no different, you take it you pay it. In 13 years of full time hunting/outfitting I have never had a client try to shake the tree with payment, yes som unforseen costs/tops animals(trophies of opportunity) lol do pop up but there is always a plan to be made, thats just buisiness.
     
  20. James.Grage

    James.Grage GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Jaco

    From what you have indicated with the cost of doing business with other than cash or bank transfer...

    you probably should look at raising your cost by X% and offer a re-bait for cash or money transfer. And all other pay your posted price. many service industries do that in the states.
     

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