Guides and Porters
Once on the Mountain, your well equipped guides and porters, will rank second only to your mental determination, in terms of important factors contributing to a successful summit attempt. For the duration of your Kilimanjaro trek, your guide will be your advisor, he will lead you to the summit, and he will bring down safely again. It will be important that you work closely with him and take note of his advice.
Other Important Points
Qualified and experienced guides
Guides are compulsory for all routes on Kilimanjaro. All our treks up the mountain are lead by highly trained and qualified guides, registered with the Kilimanjaro National Parks Board. Each of our guides has been selected over years, based on experience, safety record and through feedback from previous clients. Over the years they made a major contribution to our proud success rate of 96%+ and have safely guided in excess of 14 000 successful Climbing Kilimanjaro clients to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro.
Support staff ratios
The average ratio of our support staff to climbers is 2 to 3 porters per hiker and two guides for a maximum of 4 hikers. This excellent staff to clients ratio, bolstered by our superior support equipment, will ensure your safety and enjoyment on the mountain.
Porters and cook
The porters do not only transport your gear and the supplies up and down the mountain. Arriving at every camp site long before you, they will have already erected your tent on your arrival. In the evening they will also boil drinking and washing water and the cook will prepare dinner of a quality that has surprised many previous clients.
Weight limits for porters
Remember that there is a weight limit of 15 kg (32 lbs) per climber, on the gear of each hiker to be portered. A soft duffel bag (barrel type) is preferred – a rucksack is not necessary as they prefer to porter the loads balanced on their heads and shoulders.
This is a “compulsory tradition” on every Kilimanjaro climb. We recommend giving a tip of between US $ 190 to US $ 250 per climber to the mountain crew at the end of the climb. The exact tipping amount depends on group size and how many days were spend on the mountain. We recommend giving the tip to the main guide who will then distribute the tip among the mountain crew. We recommend not paying any tips until you and all your gear have descended from the mountain.
The average recommended tip per group per day:
- Chief guide – US $ 20 per chief guide per day from the group
- Assistant Guide – US $ 12 per assistant guide per day from the group
- Cook – US $ 8 per cook per day from the group
- Porters – US $ 6 per porter per day from the group
It is recommended not to pay your porters any tips until you and all your gear have descended from the mountain.
More on becoming a guide on Kilimanjaro
Qualifying as a Kilimanjaro guide brings with it great prestige and respect within the local community. Bearing in mind that your guide would have been employed as a porter for at least 3 years after which he would have been trained and employed as an assistant guide for at least a further 2 years. Only then did he earn an opportunity to become a registered guide, provided that he was found suitable and competent. On average guides and porters will do three (5 – 6 day) summit expeditions per month. That equates to between 15 – 18 days per month on the mountain!
This is without a doubt an extraordinary achievement.