How to select an outfitter

The right outfitter/guide can be the difference between a great hunt or a horrible memory. There are a number of steps that you can take to ensure the best experience possible.

  1. First of all you need to start at least several months in advance but it would be best to start a year or two before your expected travel.
  2. Understand your own abilities and know your goals; are you an experienced hunter wanting a trophy class animal, or a respectable animal with a great memory? Are you in the physical conditioning to complete the hunt? Tracking the animal may require days worth of walking in hilly/rocky terrain.
  3. Will you be hunting with a group or will you be the only hunter? Can the outfitter handle a group? Group pricing is generally discounted from an individual hunter.
  4. Research for an outfitter that fits your abilities and goals by searching online, attending Safari Club International events, hunting events, and asking for recommendations from other hunters.
  5. Verify the outfitter’s credentials, licensing and experience.
  6. Ask the outfitter for references, including phone numbers and email.
  7. Communicate with several of the final prospective outfitters. Ask them:
    1. What range of trophy can you expect?
    2. What is the guide/ client ratio?
    3. What services are included in the cost; care of the trophies, equipment, food?
    4. What do you need to bring? Guns, clothing, shoes, special equipment. Most guides provide a list of recommended equipment.
    5. Will they assist with travel arrangements and sight seeing excursions at the country of destination?
    6. What paperwork and/or fees need to be paid at country of destination?
    7. Get a sense of the guide’s personality. Most of the people in the business are good guys, but personalities differ. Talk enough with them to get a sense of how well you fit.
    8. Stay in touch until the hunt. As an outfitter, one of the things we enjoy most in the off season is talking with perspective clients about their upcoming “trip of a lifetime.”
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